BATE Borisov 0-1 Chelsea: Giroud header sends Chelsea through

Maurizio Sarri insists Eden Hazard would have stayed in England if he wasn't fully fit

Maurizio Sarri insists Eden Hazard would have stayed in England if he wasn't fully fit

Belgium global Hazard has established himself as one of the Premier League and Europe's top players since joining Chelsea from French side Lille in 2012.

Sarri's first impressions were not quite so glowing.

Maurizio Sarri made seven changes to his starting lineup, but the Premier League side started well at the Borisov Arena without being able to create a clear-cut opportunity.

The Blues could hoist themselves to the top of the Premier League table on Sunday if they can better Liverpool FC's result against Fulham ahead of the Manchester derby later on Sunday evening.

However, the Blues were creating very little in the final third, with only a miscued Olivier Giroud volley from a floated Ross Barkley pass coming anywhere near to breaking the deadlock.

The 27-year-old missed three matches with a back injury and on Thursday night made his first start since the October 20 draw with Manchester United.

Sarri is now level on 11 unbeaten matches with former Nottingham Forest manager Frank Clark, who achieved that feat way back in 1994/95, however he's on the cusp of bagging the outright record.

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Former Chelsea midfielder Michael Ballack has been discussing what he thinks the Blues will have to do to keep their star attacker Eden Hazard at Stamford Bridge. "I want to choose for another way, not for this kind of thinking".

Despite the knock, Richarlison played on for the full 90 minutes at Goodison Park and scored goals either side of the break in the win.

Barkley expects those Everton supporters to make their feelings known when he comes face to face with them in west London, but although he admits it will be a "strange" experience he is determined not to be intimidated.

"I wasn't sure it worked because they are so similar".

N'Golo Kante is also likely to feature, having been a late call-up to the trip to deputise for Cesc Fabregas, who called in sick.

After Giroud's goal, Ihar Stasevich shot against the post after Ruben Loftus-Cheek had given the ball away.

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