Gianfranco Zola says he is ‘ready’ for the ‘big challenge’ awaiting him back at Chelsea.
Zola recently returned to Chelsea as Maurizio Sarri’s assistant after a hugely-successful seven-year spell at Stamford Bridge as a player, winning four major honours.
“Well, we’re talking about a long, long time ago and, of course, the club is not the same but it seems to me as though the club is certainly going in the right direction,” the former Italy attacker told the club’s official website. “It’s certainly a much bigger club than it was when I was here, and I’m pleased about that because it means the whole place is improving. We’re here, myself and Maurizio, to help the club improve and keep growing. “Preseason? It’s the base of everything and it’s always been, from my point of view, rated as the most important part of the season.
“The World Cup? It’s a problem for us and many other teams so we have to make the best of it.
“The players are really going into the new regime with a lot of attention, a lot of enthusiasm and this is very encouraging.
“Coaching? It was never my intention. When I stopped playing I didn’t know whether I was good enough to do it, and I didn’t know whether I wanted to do it, but then when I stayed a little bit out of it I realised how much I missed it and therefore went back into it. “My legends appearance in May? I would have loved to have stayed on the pitch a bit longer but the bond with the fans is still very strong.
“I realise it’s a big challenge for me personally; I feel this, I know this and I’m ready. As I said when I came many years ago as a player, I don’t know what the outcome is going to be but I will have the same attitude, to work hard and do the best I can for the cause.”