What a bizarre seen it was at Wembley Stadium yesterday during the final of the Carabao Cup. Manchester City ended up winning their second title in a row after defeating Chelsea on penalty kicks. However, the story at the end of the game was not that City is still alive to win four titles this season, but rather how Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri got showed up by keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga right before the penalty shootout. Kepa went down a few times during the game, but insisted that he was just buying time for his teammates after City was applying pressure. Seeing this, Sarri went to sub on Willy Caballero, however, Kepa refused to come off the field causing a long delay and some very awkward actions.
During the exchange, which saw David Luiz talking to Kepa, Sarri lost his temper on the sideline and even started walking off the bench towards the locker room before turning around and losing his mind a bit longer. Both Kepa and Sarri insist this was just a misunderstanding, but it shows a lack of respect for the manager that Chelsea fans, and the front office, cannot get out of their minds. Just one week ago Sarri was quoted that he wasn’t sure if he still had the backing of the dressing room and with some of his antics this season that should be of no surprise.
Sarri has continually criticized some of the best players on the team, mainly Eden Hazard, and back at the end of January he kept his team in the locker room, but did not allow his assistants to enter. Could his latest display cost Sarri his job before the season ends?
Barring a Europa League Championship, and even that may not be enough, I do not think there is anyway Sarri returns to London next season if he even makes it to the end of this season. If I was the Chelsea board I would fire Sarri after the Tottenham game, this Wednesday, so that they can get an interim manager for the rest of the season and potentially gear up for a championship run in the Europa League. In a season that started so bright for Sarri, and Chelsea, it is truly remarkable how quickly the floor has dropped out. Between the pending transfer ban, and the seeming lack of leadership throughout the club, this is going to be quite an end of season, and offseason, for the Blues.