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Hiddink wanted more time

Preparation not ideal, says Chelsea boss

Last Updated: 24/02/09 7:27pm

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Hiddink: No excuses

Hiddink: No excuses

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Guus Hiddink has revealed he would have liked more time before being thrown in the deep-end at Chelsea, but says he won't be offering any excuses if success is not immediate.

The Dutchman took charge of his first game less than a fortnight after former manager Luiz Felipe Scolari was sacked and faces the first-leg of a Champions League clash with Juventus on Wednesday.

But Hiddink says he will not offer the lack of preparation as an excuse should Chelsea fail to progress to the last eight.

"I should have two, three or four weeks to observe the team and everything, and then I'd start working," he said.

"But there's no time. That's not an aspect of top-level sport, to offer excuses. It has to be done in the moment against Villa and what we have now, home and away, against Juventus.


"Every manager would like four, five or six weeks to implement a lot of things. But I have to do that in a reduced time, a pressured time. But we have to do it.

"I'd like to underline, we must not give ourselves an excuse because, if we do, there's a tendency that we go a little bit less and that's not good in the boys' minds."

Hiddink, who has tasted European glory with PSV Eindhoven in 1988, admitted he is excited to be returning to the Champions League.

"You are among the elite clubs if you're still in the Champions League after the winter. That's where a club like this needs to be. It's a very exciting competition for all of us," he added.

"Being in charge for the first time is special. We had a good first game at Villa, so that takes away a little bit of the first excitement.

"But being in this competition with this home crowd, I think everyone can expect a lot from the team in the way of energy and passion."


Wednesday night will mark the return of former Chelsea manager Claudio Ranieri to Stamford Bridge and Hiddink is well aware of the threat posed by the Juventus boss.

"He's a gentleman coach. He's very intelligent," the 62-year-old said.

"Modest is maybe not the word, but he knows how to cope with the press and the pressure in this particular job. I respect him very much.

"He has several abilities. When he was working here, he made a team that was very competitive for the Premier League.

"Secondly, recently, he's very good at organising his team. His teams show themselves to have enormous tactical discipline. It's very difficult to play those teams that he is managing."

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