Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri feels the Europa League could become a worry later in the season.
The Blues started their campaign with a 1-0 win at PAOK Salonika in Greece on Thursday evening, a game in which Sarri fielded a much-changed line-up.
Willian’s early goal from Ross Barkley’s pass was the match-winning moment for Chelsea, ensuring they’ve now got six wins from six games this season under their new manager.
It was Chelsea’s first Europa League game since winning the competition in 2013 and they’ll face long journeys later in the group to face BATE Borisov of Belarus, who won 2-0 at Hungarian side Vidi in their matchday one clash.
Sarri and his team face West Ham on Sunday before back-to-back games Liverpool in four days – in the Carabao Cup then the Premier League.
The Italian admits that English football’s hectic schedule is far from ideal and he is already setting a target of getting Europa League progression sealed very quickly.
“For an English team the Europa League is a very difficult competition,” said Sarri.
“In Italy, if I play in Greece on Thursday I can ask to play on Monday night, but I have to play again in 63 hours. I don’t know in the future.
“It is not a big problem now because we have played only six matches but in the future it may be a problem. I hope to qualify before the last one or two matches of the group stage.”
Chelsea are 1.57 to win at West Ham on Sunday. The Hammers are 5.50 while the draw is 4.20.