Chelsea news: Superstitious manager Maurizio Sarri won’t touch the ball during games, reveals Jorginho

Chelsea news: Superstitious manager Maurizio Sarri won’t touch the ball during games, reveals Jorginho

January 26, 2022

MAURIZIO SARRI is a well-known creature of habit but Chelsea midfielder Jorginho has revealed yet another stunning superstition which the Italian abides by.

Already known for painting his players' studs black, avoiding black cats and using a lucky parking space, Sarri has ANOTHER tradition which he employs to avoid cursing his team.

It's been revealed that while most managers return errant balls which run beyond the touchline, the 59-year-old refuses to touch the match-ball during games.

And Jorginho, who worked under Sarri for three years at Napoli before following him to Stamford Bridge in the summer, says the coach will never deviate, even if his team are losing and need the ball back quickly.

The Brazilian said: “It’s really easy to understand him you know. The way he seems – that’s how he is.

"He has no secrets. He’s a simple guy. He has his beliefs, his superstitions. Everyone does.

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Jorginho has become used to Sarri's superstitious ways.Credit: Getty Images – Getty

“For example, he won’t touch the match ball ever.

"Even if we’re losing, the ball goes out and we need to get the ball back in play as fast as possible, he won’t go near it. No way – he won’t touch it."

Another habit which has dominated Sarri's spell in the Premier League has been his attempts to combat his smoking cravings by inserting a filter in his mouth during games.

Smoking is banned in stadiums meaning he is unable to light up while on the touchline.

It is also understood Sarri is so superstitious, he asked for his unveiling as Chelsea manager to be delayed by 24 hours so it did not fall on Friday 13 July.

Other superstitions adopted by Sarri include drinking espresso at designated intervals, swapping training pitches during winning runs and feeding his players margarita pizza after matches.

While quirky, Sarri's habits appear to have made the difference for Chelsea who are second in the Premier League just two points behind league leaders Manchester City.

Victory over Crystal Palace took the Blues above Liverpool and extended Sarri's unbeaten record at the beginning of his tenure to 11 games, equalling a 24-year Premier League record set by Frank Clark at Nottingham Forest.

Chelsea could even go top of the table if they beat Everton and extend Sarri's run next Sunday, a game which takes place just hours before the Manchester derby between City and Manchester United.

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