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Reaction to Scolari sacking

Luis Felipe Scolari
Scolari is a World Cup winner but could not succeed at Chelsea
Chelsea manager Luiz Felipe Scolari has been sacked as Chelsea manager after little more than seven months at the Stamford Bridge helm.

Chelsea have slipped seven points behind Premier League leaders Manchester United, but are still in the last 16 of both the Champions League and the FA Cup.

So have Chelsea been too hasty, or was it time to say goodbye to the former Portugal and Brazil coach?

MANCHESTER UNITED MANAGER SIR ALEX FERGUSON

"I am really surprised. It is a shock so soon - he only took the job seven months ago. He is a man of great experience; he took Brazil to World Cup winners - and was the obvious choice to replace Avram Grant," he told MUTV.

"It is a sign of the times. There is absolutely no patience in the world now. There was great expectation at Chelsea that they were going to do well this year - and it is only this last month they have had a bad spell. The judgment really is only on the last month."

BBC SPORTS EDITOR MIHIR BOSE

"Roman Abramovich has put in a lot of money and what he wants is to be number one and to win trophies.

"He also wants the manager to bring him the affection of the fans and he wants to see good football. At the end of the day, as the Russian owner saw it, Scolari was not fulfilling on any of those objectives and that is why he had to go."

FORMER CHELSEA MANAGER GLENN HODDLE

"I think any manager nowadays needs a bit more time than Scolari's had - so yes, I'm surprised," he said in an interview with Chelsea TV.

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Phil McNulty

"But obviously the standards Chelsea are looking for are right up there and anyone that takes a job like Chelsea knows those pressure are there.

"With how much money you've got and how much talent you've got, it's a pressure job. That pressure has probably built up in the last month and it looks like that's the reason."

FORMER BRAZIL CAPTAIN DUNGA

"It's difficult, a question of time. There is no doubt he will find a new job. He won titles with Palmeiras and national teams. There is no doubt about his quality.

"Every job has its difficulties and pressure. Football is under scrutiny all the time and the coach has to get to know the players to get the best out of them.

"There's no doubt about his skills, he's a world champion and so you cannot doubt that.

"European football and Brazilian football trainers have not enough time to train and to get to know each other, so it's difficult."

FORMER CHELSEA PLAYER PAT NEVIN

"His popularity has been plummeting the past few weeks. The question is, who is going to be able to do it with a squad that is clearly not strong enough.

"They've had a few changes over the past year or two. Since Jose Mourinho left it's not really been settled.

"This is a club that a year ago was one of the biggest in the world and quite clearly it seems to have gone downhill quite quickly. I hope for Chelsea's sake, they don't have a knee-jerk reaction and dive for the first name that comes into their mind, the first big name that becomes available.

"They need to give it an awful lot of thought and maybe consider someone that isn't the biggest name in the world."

FORMER CHELSEA MANAGER JOHN HOLLINS

"In the last four or five games the supporters have been becoming more and more tense.

"They have been on the edge of their seats even in matches against the likes of Hull and Stoke, and Scolari was becoming increasingly tense, with Chelsea fans demanding their team wins matches.

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"It's not like international management where you choose a team every one or two months and can choose from players across the country. The Premier League is not leisurely and I don't think he felt comfortable week-in, week-out picking teams and talking to people.

"They might have done it just in time to resurrect their season; the last five or six games there needed to be a change and we hadn't seen it. If you are going to do something, it was best to do it now."

FORMER CHELSEA STRIKER KERRY DIXON

"I've spoken to a lot of Chelsea fans and I, like them, believe it is the right decision.

"I think the football we have seen in the last two months has been dire. I think Chelsea have slid out of the race for the Premier League title and the way Scolari was going they weren't going to get back into it.

"Jose Mourinho raised the bar at Chelsea. He won six trophies in three years there.

"You look at Avram Grant and Phil Scolari but the Chelsea fans feasted on Mourinho and what he brought to the club.

"The hierarchy didn't like it, they dispensed with him but he has set the mark for every manager who comes to Chelsea."

FORMER CAPTAIN RON HARRIS

"It hasn't come as a surprise because I don't think they have been setting the Premier League alight. They started off ever so well, but I don't think they have been playing particularly well for the last couple of months.

"Chelsea have got three important games coming up. They've got Watford in the FA Cup, then Aston Villa and then they play Juventus and, with the way the results have been recently, I couldn't personally see them winning any of those games.

"So I think the board have decided to act because they are in a situation at the moment where they are fourth in the table where we're dropping points during what could be a crucial period for the football club."

FORMER CHELSEA PLAYER CLIVE WALKER

"Results count. When you are at one of the big teams and spend money, then trophies are expected and the team are currently going through a really bad patch.

"It's going to be a tough job because they aren't playing well despite the talent in the squad.

"They also have an ageing squad and I'm not sure that with the credit crunch and everything whether there is any money there to spend."

CHELSEA SUPPORTERS GROUP SPOKESPERSON DAVID JOHNSON

"Inevitable is the word that sums it up. He had been going backwards this season. He's a nice enough guy but just couldn't cut it.

"We need someone in there to buck the players up because one or two of them haven't been putting it in for the club."

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see also
Chelsea warned off Zola & Clarke
09 Feb 09 |  West Ham
Wilkins defends Scolari tactics
07 Feb 09 |  Premier League
Chelsea 'must give Scolari time'
13 Jan 09 |  Chelsea
Scolari named as Chelsea manager
11 Jun 08 |  Chelsea


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