Despite their surprise home defeat to FC Basle on Wednesday evening, Jose Mourinho is confident Chelsea will make progress in the UEFA Champions League.
The Swiss side came from a goal behind to stun the Blues 2-1, ending their 29-match unbeaten home in Champions League group stages. With Schalke and Steaua Bucharest making up the remainder of Group E, Mourinho’s side, the winners of the competition in 2012, were widely expected to qualify with some ease.
And despite their surprise setback, the Portuguese coach remains confident his players will recover to reach the last 16, with a trip to Romania next on the agenda. In regards to the lost three points in their opening match, he feels they will recover these during the coming matches, even if it means exacting revenge on Murat Yakin’s team.
“The objective of finishing in the top two in the group phase and to go to the next stage of the Champions League is an objective that is not lost, far from it,” he said. “It’s an objective we’re going to fight for and it’s an objective that I believe very, very much that we’re going to achieve. We lost three points that we must get somewhere.
“We must get them, (from) Basle, or Schalke, or Bucharest, or all of them, or some of them. Normally you have to win the matches at home and get a few points away. Now we must win six points at home, Schalke and Steaua, but we have also to win points away. Probably we have to go to win at Basle to compensate for the defeat.”
In the other game in the group, Schalke made light work of beating Steaua 3-0 at home. The Germans, along with Chelsea, are favourites to qualify to the knockout stages, and much could depend on the two meetings between these sides, which take place on 22 October and then the return in London a fortnight later (6 November).