Football

Kenyon applauds Scolari popularity

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Luiz Felipe Scolari has brought a feelgood factor to Chelsea that was missing under Jose Mourinho, according to the club's chief executive Peter Kenyon.

Kenyon believes the stature of the former World Cup winner has rubbed off not only on his players but also on neutral fans.

"He's got a very good people manner about him," said Kenyon. "He's an experienced coach who engaged with the team and club - and the media - very quickly."

He added: "It's created a better, less negative environment. It's always better to have people, internally and externally, supporting you.

"It's immeasurable in terms of Chelsea's image. People don't like to be hated. We are all human beings and Felipe has clearly engaged with a broader neutral football fan. He is bringing something different to English football."

Meanwhile, Chelsea have made it clear they will make a concerted effort to boost their production of home-grown players in order to avoid getting sucked in by the credit crunch, and potential new rules that would prohibit the cross-border transfer of under-18 players.

Kenyon revealed the Blues would only buy key players in the January transfer window if the club's injury crisis was not sustainable at the time.

"We need to invest continually but not at the levels we used to," Kenyon said. "We are not stopping transfers or anything drastic of that nature but we want to develop our own talent.

"I'm not sure there are major players available in January, that's the reality. "What is the point in bringing players in - and Felipe is completely on board with this - if the only ones available are not good enough to improve what we've got?

"January is the wrong time to bring players in for the long term. Anything we do will be against the backdrop of a need to, rather than a desire to, like we reacted by bringing in Mineiro after Michael Essien's injury."

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Topics:
Football
Chelsea
Premier League
Michael Essien

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