Maurizio Sarri was almost left in awe of the quality of the Liverpool side that blew his team away at Anfield on Sunday evening, and the Italian coach admitted that his Chelsea team couldn't live with the threat of the Reds whirlwind performance.
Despite the Blues' fifth Premier League away defeat in their last seven outings, Sarri was adamant that his team showed the spirit and fight he was searching for in his team only a few months ago before going on to say he believes that his team is close to bridging the gap between the league leaders, and also the champions Manchester City.
Despite Liverpool's early second-half storm, Chelsea appeared dangerous in certain moments and even had enough chances to perhaps take something from Merseyside. However, it cannot be ignored how easily the visitors succame to the Reds imminent threat just minutes into the second period.
Within two minutes, the game was almost out of sight for Chelsea following two stunning goals from the rampant hosts just after the interval including a goal from the heavens from their former player Mohamed Salah.
When questioned on Chelsea's game plan in his post-match press conference, the Italian boss said: "We needed to pass the first 10 minutes with the same result."
"In the last 20-30 minutes, we could find a lot of spaces because they needed to win and so the target was to arrive in the last 20-30 minutes at 0-0.”
“We were a little bit low, but we defended very low at the beginning of the first half.
"Because as you know, Liverpool is very able to approach the first half and the second half in the first 10 minutes in a very strong way.
"So, it’s not easy to play against them in that moment."
"We are improving"
Despite the result handing Manchester United their own destiny in securing a desired top-four finish, Sarri believes his side are showing significant signs of progress to the team that consistently struggled to understand his system and coaching methods, only a couple of months ago.
"Two-three months ago we were not able to stay in this type of match", Sarri added.
"So, in my opinion, we are improving. Of course, it is very difficult because the level in England is really very high and to cover the gap especially against Liverpool and Manchester City is really difficult. But now we are really very close to the other teams.”
"Liverpool is one of the best teams in Europe in this moment."
"They play very well for 90 minutes. I feel we stayed in the match very well today.
"We were a little bit unlucky. The second goal, for the timing, was a little bit unlucky because in three minutes we had three-goal opportunities, two with Hazard, one with Higuaín and we hit the post for the 35th time this season. I am very happy with the performance because we stayed in the match until the end."
Sarri makes title call
The Chelsea boss even went on to make his own prediction on who will lift the title in May and insisted it could all come down to one pivotal moment of fortune - good or fatal - for either side.
“The title will probably depend on the ball hitting a post and going in, or staying out.
“It will be point by point and I am not sure who will win it, but I am sure at the end the difference will be one or two points, no more.”