Nigerian John Obi Mikel unfazed by pre-season setbacks

By IndepthAfrica
In Soccer
Jul 29th, 2012
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John Obi Mikel of Chelsea arrives ahead of the Champions League final soccer match between Bayern Munich and Chelsea at the Munich airport, May 18, 2012. REUTERS/Lars Baron/UEFA/Pool (GERMANY – Tags: SPORT SOCCER)

John Obi Mikel insists Chelsea are moving in the right direction despite losing their second consecutive game on their USA pre-season tour.

The Champions League winners lost 1-0 against AC Milan in Miami on Saturday after going down 3-2 against the MLS All-Star team earlier in the week.

Despite the setbacks, midfielder Mikel, who has seen his place in the side come under threat following the arrivals of Eden Hazard and Oscar, is not concerned.

“I feel good, I think it was a good game for us,” the 25-year-old told Chelsea’s official website.

“It was not the result we would have wanted but there are positives we can take and try to build on it.

“We didn’t create many chances, but there were opportunities and maybe we were just one pass or one run short, so we are getting closer to how we want to be, and if we can keep doing what we are doing we will start to open teams up and improve our play.

“It is still pre-season and we have time to work on a few things before we get to the competitive games.”

The match with the Italian giants was the Blues’ final game of their USA tour, and they now return to London with an eye on the upcoming Premier League season.

And although Mikel says the experience of playing in America is exciting, he admits the squad are ready to return to the UK.

“I think we are all keen to get back home now but it has been a great experience playing in America and meeting so many amazing fans,” he said.

“Now we have to get back and build on what we have done on the tour and we will be in a good place on August 12 for the Community Shield.”

Chelsea’s season kicks off against Manchester City in the Community Shield on August 12

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