Benitez takes heart despite early Chelsea exit

  • Umno lawyer calls Karpal ‘one of the most ethical criminal lawyers’
    Umno lawyer calls Karpal ‘one of the most ethical criminal lawyers’

    Umno lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah had plenty of encounters in the courts with the late Karpal Singh but today, he paid tribute to the veteran lawyer who died in an accident yesterday. Shafee said Karpal was “one of the most ethical criminal lawyers” he used to appear with while acting as deputy public prosecutor or counsel for the... …

  • Gerakan calls Karpal elder statesman, Samy Vellu cries over news of death
    Gerakan calls Karpal elder statesman, Samy Vellu cries over news of death

    In an ultimate accolade, Gerakan, DAP’s political rival in Penang, today praised Karpal Singh as an elder statesman and a true Malaysian. State Gerakan deputy president Datuk Dr Cheah Soon Hai said Karpal was one of the few people in the country who had left a legacy. He said the former DAP chairman was a legend in both the political and... …

  • Abdullah pays tribute to Karpal’s life of service – Bernama
    Abdullah pays tribute to Karpal’s life of service – Bernama

    Former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said Karpal Singh, who died in a road accident yesterday, led a life of tireless commitment and service to the people.  “We are poorer for the loss of a great legal mind and a crusader for justice and human rights," he said as he extended condolences to the family of the former DAP chairman and... …

  • Underwater drone used in MH370 search diving to its extreme limits
    Underwater drone used in MH370 search diving to its extreme limits

    An underwater drone scouring the Indian Ocean floor for missing Malaysian flight MH370 has dived to its deepest ever level, putting its equipment at unprecedented risk, as hopes dwindled that it might soon turn up some sign of wreckage. The United States navy's Bluefin-21 and its "side scan" sonar has become the focal point of the search some... …

  • PAS to discuss Muslims’ use of ‘RIP’
    PAS to discuss Muslims’ use of ‘RIP’

    PAS will discuss whether it is appropriate for Muslims to use the phrase “Rest in Peace” (RIP), following the National Fatwa Council's reminder yesterday to Muslims not to use the expression on non-Muslims because the term had Christian connotations. PAS Research Centre director Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad said the party’s political bureau would... …

  • 100 protest against Obama visit in front of US embassy
    100 protest against Obama visit in front of US embassy

    About 100 activists today protested outside the US embassy in Kuala Lumpur against the coming visit by President Barack Obama, denouncing him as an enemy of Islam. The demonstration underscored the delicate nature of Obama's trip to Malaysia, which will make him the first sitting US president to visit in nearly half a century, a period marked... …

Chelsea interim coach Rafael Benitez did his best to focus on the positives after the holders went out of the Champions League at the group phase despite thrashing FC Nordsjaelland.

An empathic 6-1 success in west London on Wednesday saw Chelsea end their Group E campaign in style, but Juventus' 1-0 win at Shakhtar Donetsk meant the champions finished third in the group and slipped into the Europa League.

Since taking over from the sacked Roberto Di Matteo, Benitez has seen Chelsea fall 10 points off the pace in the Premier League, and they now hold the dubious distinction of being the first Champions League winners to tumble at the first hurdle the following season.

The bare facts paint a bleak picture of life at Stamford Bridge, but with the Club World Cup in Japan to look forward to next week, Benitez says there is no time to dwell on disappointment.

"I'm sure playing at the level we played at today (Wednesday), we can do whatever we want, but we have to start in the next game," he said.

"My approach is one game at a time. Everything I'm seeing from the players is good -- they are progressing, improving and adjusting to the little ideas we are trying to change."

After both sides had seen penalties saved, David Luiz gave Chelsea the lead from the penalty spot in the 38th minute before Fernando Torres doubled the hosts' advantage in first-half stoppage time.

Joshua John pulled a goal back within 30 seconds in the second half but further goals from Torres, Gary Cahill, Juan Mata and substitute Oscar gave Chelsea a one-sided victory.

Torres had scored only once in his previous 11 games and Benitez said his rediscovered scoring touch was a result of the chances created for him.

"Yesterday in training he was sharp and today he was fine, but the team helped because we were playing with intensity right until the end, even when we were 6-1 up," he said.

"If we can play at this level, I think he can score more goals."

Eden Hazard saw a penalty saved before Luiz netted the opener and when Benitez was asked why Torres was not afforded penalty-taking responsibilities, his response suggested the Spaniard does not possess a cool enough temperament.

"Sometimes you don't need strikers to take penalties," said Benitez.

"If you have other players who have more calmness or composure -- at Liverpool we had (Steven) Gerrard, here we have David and Hazard."

After the jubilation of May's maiden triumph in the Champions League, Chelsea's fans may view the Europa League as an unfitting competition for the European champions, but Benitez vowed to approach it seriously.

"The Europa League is not important if you don't win, but if you are in the semi-finals or the final, you want to win," he said.

"It's an important competition and we want to go as far as we can."

Benitez also believes Chelsea can prosper using a game-to-game approach because they have a deep enough squad to challenge on multiple fronts -- despite previously complaining that he does not have enough players at his disposal.

"The reason I'm using different players is because I want to use my squad," he said. "If you use all your players, you can keep your level until the end of the season."

Nordsjaelland coach Kasper Hjulmand admitted that his side had fallen to vastly superior opposition.

"It was a terrible feeling," he said.

"It was obvious for everyone we were outclassed. They were much better than we were, physically and with their strength, and at the tempo they played, we couldn't match it."

The Danish champions finished their debut campaign with a goal difference of -18 and when Hjulmand was asked what his side had taken from the experience, he replied: "A lot of beatings!"

Follow @YahooMalaysia on LINE for daily news updates.

Comments on Yahoo pages are subject to our link to Comments Guidelines. You are responsible for any content that you post. Yahoo is not responsible or liable in any way for comments posted by its users. Yahoo does not in any way endorse or support comments made by its users.

  • Langkawi BN MP pokes fun at Karpal Singh’s remains The Malaysian Insider
    Langkawi BN MP pokes fun at Karpal Singh’s remains

    As the nation mourns the passing of a great politician, BN MP Datuk Nawawi Ahmad insulted the late Karpal Singh by posting a picture of the veteran politician's blood-smeared face as he lay in his Toyota Alphard following a tragic accident this morning. Along with the Facebook picture was a newspaper cutting on Karpal being opposed to the... …

  • Told to ‘shut up’ on Twitter, Zul Noordin lashes back at Khairy The Malay Mail Online
    Told to ‘shut up’ on Twitter, Zul Noordin lashes back at Khairy

    KUALA LUMPUR, April 18 — A feud is breaking out between former Perkasa vice president Datuk Zulkifli Noordin and Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin on Twitter. Told unequivocally by the minister... …

  • Karpal makes last journey home to Penang The Malaysian Insider
    Karpal makes last journey home to Penang

    Amid tears of sorrow, a coffin bearing Karpal Singh's body was loaded onto a van for his final journey back to Penang today. The 73-year-old, popularly known as the "Tiger of Jelutong", died early this morning after the Toyota Alphard he was in collided with a five-tonne Mitsubishi Canter. Karpal's body had been brought to Raja Permaisuri... …