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Sports News of Thursday, 31 January 2019

Source: GHANAsoccernet.com

Maurizio Sarri explains reason for benching Hudson-Odoi against Bournemouth

Under-fire Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri has opened up on decision behind the omission of Hudson-Odoi in their humiliating defeat against AFC Bournemouth on Wednesday.

The Blues were trounced 4-0 by the Cherries at the Vitality Stadium on Wednesday, with Hudson-Odoi's conspicuous missing from the team's matchday squad.

Hudson-Odoi had a transfer request to join Bayern Munich rejected by the Blues on Monday - less than 24 hours after the second goal in Chelsea's 3-0 win over Sheffield Wednesday in the FA Cup.

Several media reports indicated that the 18-year-old was omitted from the matchday squad as punishment for wanting to leave the club, however the Italian gaffer said the talented teenager was left out to maintain balance.

"He was with us, he played three days ago. There was Willian [in the starting XI], so I had only one winger on the bench," Sarri said in his post-match press conference.

"We have four wingers, one had to be in the stands."

The four-goal defeat was only the second time Chelsea have ever been defeated by that margin in Premier League history - since a 5-1 loss against Liverpool in September 1996.

Chelsea will have an immediate opportunity to atone for the defeat with a home fixture against Premier League strugglers Huddersfield Town on