Maurizio Sarri tells Ruben Loftus-Cheek to get used to Chelsea pressure

England international has yet to start Premier League game under Maurizio Sarri

DUBLIN, IRELAND - AUGUST 01: Ruben Loftus-Cheek of Chelsea during the Pre-season friendly International Champions Cup game between Arsenal and Chelsea at Aviva stadium on August 1, 2018 in Dublin, Ireland. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images) 1:06
Ruben Loftus-Cheek must step up to handle the pressure of being a Chelsea player, says Maurizio Sarri

Maurizio Sarri has told Ruben Loftus-Cheek to get used to the pressure of playing for a club like Chelsea.

Loftus-Cheek, a Chelsea player since the age of eight, has made just two Premier League appearances under Sarri following his World Cup campaign with England.

Both of those came from the bench, but Gareth Southgate kept faith with Loftus-Cheek and gave him a starting role in England's game against Switzerland last month.

Gareth Southgate and Ruben Loftus-Cheek during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group G match between Tunisia and England at Volgograd Arena on June 18, 2018 in Volgograd, Russia.
Image: Gareth Southgate (right) has kept faith with Loftus-Cheek

Loftus-Cheek began training with Chelsea's first team regularly during the 2014/15 season under Jose Mourinho but even for a young player widely regarded as their best academy product since John Terry, opportunities have remained hard to come by.

Sarri's stance has so far echoed that of his predecessors.

"The pressure is normal for a player of high level so he has to get used to the pressure," the Chelsea boss said ahead of their Europa League tie against FC Vidi on Thursday.

"It's normal for a high-level player to have pressure from the club, the newspapers, TV, the manager."

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Daniel Sturridge celebrates with team-mates after scoring the team's first goal during the English Premier League football match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge in London on September 29, 2018 2:53
Highlights from Chelsea's 1-1 draw with Liverpool in the Premier League.

Sarri reiterated that he plans to see every player in his squad between the first international break of the season and the second, in what he described as his "pre-season" following a summer in which many of his players were in Russia.

"Maybe tomorrow it is time to see Loftus I think," Sarri added.

"He was unlucky in the last three weeks after the match with the national team, he had a problem but in the last five, six days he's been better so I think he's able to play tomorrow."

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Sarri plans to make "six, seven or eight" changes to the side that drew against Liverpool in the league last weekend.

But the Italian, yet to win a major trophy as a manager, maintains he wants to be in the Europa League until the end, despite admitting the club's priority is securing a place in the Champions League.

"I am here to win, I want to win something," he said. "I hope to be able to do it."

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