Chelsea scored twice in the opening 20 minutes, conceded twice before halftime and had a late victor through Marcos Alonso in a 3-2 victory over Arsenal at Stamford Bridge yesterday. 'But I'm happy here.
Sarri believes Hazard isn't yet ready for 90 minutes after his exertions with Belgium at the World Cup, but acknowledged his side will be a different prospect once his star man is up to speed.
"I think we did really very well in the first 25 minutes today", Sarri told reporters. Last season it was direct balls and for me to protect the ball in the air is not my best quality.
The 59-year-old Italian, a heavy smoker unable to satisfy his habit on the touchline due to the smoking ban, was grateful for Eden Hazard setting up Marcos Alonso's 81st-minute victor. "I am going to stop for just one or two years then I will start again".
Marcos Alonso popped up 10 minutes from time to secure all three points for Chelsea.
"But I'm still out of rhythm since I've just joined the squad, but I'm working well and I'm improving and that's what matters".
Hazard's Belgian team-mate Thibaut Courtois forced a move from Chelsea to Madrid earlier this month by refusing to return for pre-season training after helping his country finish third at the World Cup.
Towards the end of the first half, though, Sarri's side allowed Arsenal a route back into the game. We were unable to cover the lost balls and press like a team, so we were really in trouble, but I think the players were really very good because at 2-2 it was not easy with Arsenal. We started to work all together two weeks ago. In that 15 minutes we were not able to do this.
Loftus-Cheek will hope for positive talks with Chelsea this week and look to get some much-needed minute against Newcastle this weekend at St James' Park.