Roman Abramovich went silent for four days and then sacked me. I had chance to make Chelsea the best team in the world

Photo: Paul Gilham/Getty Images

Former Chelsea manager Avram Grant has revealed former Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich did not speak to him for four days after Chelsea lost the 2008 Champions League final to Manchester United.

Grant, 67, was brought to Stamford Bridge as director of football in July 2007 but was then made Chelsea manager after Jose Mourinho was sacked two months later.

Under Grant, Chelsea finished second behind Manchester United, coming up short by just two points. The Blues also lost to Manchester United in the Champions League final in 2008 on penalties.

John Terry had the chance to win the Champions League from the spot, but slipped and fired his effort off the post.

Speaking on “Fever Pitch: The Battle for the Premier League” – which is exclusively available on Paramount+ – about the 2007/08 season, he said: “We came second place (in the league), but I remember I think in my first or second (press conference), I said that my target is to be first time in Champions League final.

“Now we had the opportunity to be the best in the world.

“I remember that we received the [Manchester United] team and there was [Wayne] Rooney and [Cristiano] Ronaldo and [Carlos] Tevez. Then he changed the team so the first 15 minutes, which was a little bit confusing.

“After 20 minutes we did internal change and then we dominated the game completely.

“We played really much better than them. I think even Alex [Ferguson] knows that. But then we come to penalties.

“Oh, it was unfortunate, because John Terry was really, I think, maybe his best season. He played so good in this season.”

He continued: “[Roman] Abramovich didn’t call me [after the final]. Three, four days we didn’t speak. And then he called me to his house and he said, We need to prepare the season, the next season.

“So I say, Okay. And he said to me, you are continuing the job as director of football. So, okay. And I didn’t agree to be director of football, and I left.

“I felt upset because I felt that we are so close to be the best in the world. We were so close. But he’s the boss. He’s my friend. We need to respect that.

“I didn’t agree with this, but I will always remember also that he gave me the chance.”

After leaving Chelsea, Grant went on to manage the likes of Portsmouth, West Ham, Partizan Belgrade and Ghana.

He is now the head coach of the Zambia national team.

4 Comments on "Roman Abramovich went silent for four days and then sacked me. I had chance to make Chelsea the best team in the world"

  1. I blamed the Chelsea fc management for bringing back Frank Lampard, some one that taken Everton to relegation, to again giving him chances to manage Chelsea to the end of the season. This is a great mistake

  2. The UK government is the cause of Chelsea Downfall

    • Saviour Abraham | May 6, 2023 at 7:34 am |

      Chelsea problem is that they don’t have a heat Man as a player, every other players in Chelsea are just an average players. My advice to Chelsea is no matter what let them get Victor osiemhen and also try to convince mane to come, added Christopher nkunku on the ground already, with these 3 dreadful men on the front lines, you will see the rest average players heat up form tremendously and become a monsters in their various positions, if not Chelsea will still remains an average team season, and a good coach is also needed and a no nonsense one for that matter, one who will not be comfortable having 11 players standing inside the pitch as others and your outcome losing week in and week out… Please this is hurable.

  3. James Misadzi | May 6, 2023 at 10:18 pm |

    The owners must get coaches that master tactician who can blend the players for winning ways

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