Benitez buoyant despite Swansea shock
LONDON (AFP) – Rafael Benitez insisted Chelsea had been unlucky after a 2-0 defeat in their League Cup semifinal first leg tie by Premier League rivals Swansea at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday.
Both Swansea goals in a backs-to-the-wall effort came as a result of two errors by Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic.
Interim Blues manager Benitez, brought in to replace sacked fans’ favourite Roberto di Matteo, endured fresh jeers from Chelsea supporters.
But the Spaniard insisted any hostility directed at him was beside the point.
“You (the media) analyse all these things because we lost,” he said. “But the way we played, the chances we created, is what we have to do.
“I think the team were doing really well, had a lot of chances and could have scored two or three in the first half, but made two mistakes and paid for them. That is the reality.
“The team are doing well. You can lose a game and then analyse it, but if you play this game 10 times maybe you will win nine of them.”
However, the former Liverpool manager added: “Swansea have a great advantage (in the tie), but if we go there and score one goal we can see what happens. The team is doing a lot of good things and hopefully we can carry on improving.”
Wednesday’s result was the second surprise English League Cup semi-final first leg scoreline in as many days, if not as great an upset as fourth-tier Bradford City’s 3-1 defeat of Premier League Aston Villa on Tuesday.