Skip to main content

Chelsea are 'regaining their colour', says Blanc

Paris Saint-Germain coach Laurent Blanc was impressed by Chelsea's display in their Champions League encounter and says they are returning to their normal level.

Chelsea had disappointed in the defence of the Premier League title they won last season, sitting 12th in the table after 26 games and 20 points behind leaders Leicester City.

A lacklustre league campaign has subsequently increased the pressure on Guus Hiddink's side to succeed in the Champions League.

Although Chelsea suffered a 2-1 defeat to PSG in the first leg of their last-16 tie, Blanc saw enough to convince him the English side are close to returning to their best.

"This was a very good match from both teams. Chelsea was said to be in great trouble, they are regaining their colour," he told beIN Sports.

The coach was disappointed his team conceded an away goal – John Obi Mikel striking on the brink of half-time – but praised the atmosphere within the group.

Blanc singled out Marco Verratti's performance after overcoming a groin injury for his first start since January 13.

"My main regret is conceding the goal in the 45th minute. There was not long to go until half-time at 1-0, but we conceded a corner and the goal – it's the only regret I have," he said.

"The players are all celebrating, even those who have not played. The mood was incredible.

"Verratti was amazing. He did not even want to leave the pitch. He has no pain and is good for the future.

"We can expect a tough match at Stamford Bridge but I think the Chelsea players will say the same thing."