Chelsea hosts Stoke with players still adjusting

AP, Thursday 8 Mar 2012

Chelsea starts the hard work of trying to claw its way back into the Premier League’s top four against Stoke on Saturday, with players still adjusting to the firing of coach Andre Villas-Boas

Chelsea's Players (Photo: AP)

Villas-Boas was fired a day after last weekend’s defeat at West Bromwich Albion left perennial Champions League qualifier Chelsea three points behind fourth-place Arsenal with just 11 games remaining.

Replacement Roberto Di Matteo led Chelsea to a midweek FA Cup win in his first match but winger Juan Mata says the players still need to refocus.

Mata says “I came here first for the club, but as well for (Villas-Boas) and he gave me a lot of confidence.”

Also Saturday, third-place Tottenham is at Everton. Leader Manchester City is at Swansea on Sunday.

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