Willian? Don't ask me about his contract, fires Sarri

Result: Willian strengthens Chelsea's grip on fourth place

Willian has since starred for the Blues against Newcastle United where he scored a sublime curling goal which proved to be the victor and speaking after the game, Sarri reiterated the importance of the winger.

The Brazilian forward, linked with a move to Barcelona before the transfer window closes, curled the ball past Martin Dubravka shortly before the hour to move his side six points in front of fifth-placed Arsenal.

"Jorginho was in trouble and on the bench there wasn't a player for that position".

The former Napoli manager responded similarly to talk Willian potential exit in an interview with Sky Sports, claiming: "You know very well that Willian is a very important player". It depends on the club decision.

Willian's first Premier League goal since October gave Chelsea a vital three points in the top-four race after Ciaran Clark's header cancelled out an early opener from Pedro Rodriguez in a lively first half, but frustration gripped Stamford Bridge as the home side laboured for long spells.

Sarri's wing options have been bolstered by the return to fitness of both Willian and Pedro from muscle injuries, but uncertainty surrounding Callum Hudson-Odoi's future makes Willian's availability all the more important.

On his decisive goal and the win over Newcastle, Willian added: "I think it's always hard in the Premier League". After the goal, I think we thought now it's easy, but it wasn't.

Once again, Sarri stubbornly stuck to his experiment with Eden Hazard as Chelsea's central striker despite the Belgian star's dislike of the tactic. "For us, in this moment, he is a fundamental player". We need to improve in the mental reaction because after the first goal something happened. So we need Pedro. "In my opinion, Willian has to stay with us".

With Chelsea fans beginning to lose patience at their team's latest spluttering home display, Willian lifted the mood in the nick of time with his superb second-half curler.

Newcastle find themselves in the relegation zone as a result of wins for Southampton and Burnley and another winter of discontent is brewing for the Magpies. "We stopped playing and then we had problems". "In the last five matches for us it really was very hard to score", he said.

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