Chelsea manager Robert Di Matteo says he is not just keeping the seat warm for Pep Guardiola
Roberto Di Matteo has dismissed suggestions that he will be managing Chelsea this season in the shadow of Pep Guardiola and insisted that his future would be defined purely by results.
In his first press conference since being confirmed as Chelsea’s permanent manager, Di Matteo also made it clear that he would lead Chelsea in the same pragmatic manner that ultimately delivered both the Champions League and FA Cup to Stamford Bridge last season.
Roman Abramovich, the Chelsea owner, had regarded Guardiola as the ideal replacement for Andre Villas-Boas, the Portuguese manager now at Tottenham who he sacked in March, but the former Barcelona manager has made it clear that he wants to take a lengthy break from football.
Di Matteo was made interim manager following Villas-Boas’s departure but, even after winning the Champions League with victories against both Barcelona and Bayern Munich, his appointment on a two-year deal was not confirmed for more than three weeks.
“There has been speculation from day one and I have lived with it,” Di Matteo said. “I don’t feel any shadow above or behind me. I know the process sometimes takes a bit of time, it is an important decision for the club and I have no problems with it at all.
“I always said that I was going to accept and respect any decision. Pressure will always be there at this club and you’re judged on results. With Chelsea you’re always looking to compete and be in the frame to win something. That will be the key.”