Ahead of tomorrow’s ‘Final Whistle on Hate’ charity match against the MLS side New England Revolution in Boston, César Azpilicueta, Marcos Alonso and former Blue Michael Mancienne met with the media.
Here is what they had to say…
On how the match was formed and the importance of the game –
“It’s a big event for everybody, fighting antisemitism and all forms of discrimination. Chelsea is very active in all kinds of campaigns and we are very proud of what the club is doing.
It’s been a busy few weeks trying to get into the final of the Europa League and the last Premier League games to qualify for the Champions League.
We are pleased to be in America, first time in Boston and a game we are all looking forward to playing because it’s a big event to fight against anti-Semitism and all kinds of discrimination.”
“We have the power to be an example for society. It’s good to be here, and preparation for the European final. It’s a pleasure for us to play.
We are focused on the final, but this is a good thing to do. Players have the power to be an example for society and it is good preparation for the Europa League final.
It’s a pleasure to be here to play against one of the bet teams in the MLS.”
Michael Mancienne (six appearances for Chelsea between 2006-2011) on his experience in dealing with and seeing discrimantion first hand in football –
“I haven’t faced much discrimination much in my career, but I have witnessed it happen to other players.
To have Chelsea, one of the biggest clubs in the world stand up to this is important. We have a platform as professional athletes to take a stand against anti-Semitism and racism.
You’ve seen it in England with Raheem Sterling and it’s something we need to kick out.”
On how competitive the game will be and if the young Chelsea players are excited to play tomorrow –
“We are excited to see Reece [James] and Trevor [Chalobah] back from their loan spells and Connor [Gallagher] who was named player of the year in the academy, Marc [Guehi] was on the bench in the last Premier League game.
We are facing an opponent who is active in their league.”
“It’s a massive game. One of the biggest teams in the world are here and it’s a great cause.
There’s no real pressure on the result so it’s a chance to go out there and play freely while testing yourself against some of the best players in the world.”
And that’s the end of the Press Conference.
Chelsea face the Revolution tomorrow as part of the award-winning ‘Say No To Antisemitism’ campaign.
The ‘Final Whistle of Hate’ charity match will kick-off at 8:10pm local time (1:10 am Thursday morning in the UK) and will be played at the Gillette Stadium in Boston, Massachusetts, home of the Revolution and the current NFL champions New England Patriots.
Chelsea fans in the USA will be able to watch the game on Fox Sports 1.
Fans across over the world can watch the game live for free on The 5th Stand app, the club’s official website and the club’s official Facebook page.