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Sarri’s debut season hinged on Europa League win – Hasselbaink

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Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink believes Maurizio Sarri’s debut season will be dependent on Europa League success.

Sarri is still not popular among Chelsea fans since taking charge at Stamford Bridge due to his footballing philosophy but guided Chelsea to a first European final since their 2013 Europa League win.

Having secured Champions League football via the League route, former Chelsea forward Hasselbaink feels the manager’s debut season will be termed a success if they beat Arsenal in Baku on May 29.

LONDON, ENGLAND – FEBRUARY 24: Maurizio Sarri, Manager of Chelsea gives his team instructions during half-time of extra-time during the Carabao Cup Final between Chelsea and Manchester City at Wembley Stadium on February 24, 2019, in London, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

“At the start of the season a Champions League place was the aim and [Sarri] has got that in finishing in third,” said Hasselbaink via Sky.

“They had the League Cup final – that they lost to Man City on penalties – and the FA Cup, where they [reached the fifth round].

“If they win the Europa League final it’s been a successful season for Chelsea.”

When asked about Chelsea’s transfer ban and Eden Hazard’s possible departure to Real Madrid, the former Dutch international highlighted on continuity.

But Hasselbaink insists Chelsea need to kick on and said: “It’s a start.

“From where they came from it’s a big improvement. Now they need to improve again for next year. They need to be title contenders.”