Gullit: I was mistakenly sacked by Chelsea for 'partying in Amsterdam'

‘I was stabbed in the back!’ Former Chelsea boss Ruud Gullit claims he was sacked by the Blues for ‘partying in Amsterdam’ when he was actually caring for his sick mother

  • Ruud Gullit was surprisingly sacked by Chelsea in 1998 despite impressing
  • Gullit helped the Blues win their first major trophy in 26 years during his tenure
  • Dutchman then joined Newcastle United where he clashed with Alan Shearer
  • The falling out led to his St James’ Park departure after just a year in charge 

Former Chelsea boss Ruud Gullit has claimed he was sacked by Chelsea after they mistakenly thought he was partying too much in Amsterdam.

Gullit became a player-manager at Stamford Bridge in 1996 after a year in the Blues midfield having been chosen to replace England bound Glenn Hoddle. 

He became an instant success, winning the club their first trophy in 26 years with the FA Cup in 1997 and coupling it with a sixth place finish.

Ruud Gullit enjoyed a successful stint as player-manager at Chelsea between 1996 and 1998

Gullit won the club their first major trophy in 26 years by lifting the FA Cup at Wembley

The Blues were set to improve again the following campaign until he was surprisingly sacked despite them sitting second in the table.

Now the Dutchman has lifted the lid on the reasons behind his dismissal at Stamford Bridge, insisting the club thought he was partying when he was actually caring for his ill mother. 

‘I think I figured it out later on, the reason why I was sacked. I didn’t understand why at the time,’ Gullit told beIN SPORTS.

‘My Mum was sick, she had breast cancer. I went to Holland lot in order to just be there for her. If you see your Mum in a hospital, especially for cancer, it’s so sad and so down. It was an unbelievable experience to be there and I wanted her to get out as soon as possible because it’s depressing.’

But he was surprisingly sacked by chairman Ken Bates (centre) while the club were second in the Premier League table and in the hunt for silverware in Europe

The Dutchman claims he was mistakenly thought to be partying in Amsterdam when he was actually caring for his ill mother

‘So I spent a lot of time with her in Holland. They said I was sacked because I was in Amsterdam partying too much or whatever, it was not even that. I was astonished. Like really stabbed in the back in an unbelievable way.’

Upon his Blues departure in 1998, Gullit’s high reputation led to him replacing Kenny Dalglish at Newcastle United where his promise of ‘sexy football’ left Toon fans with high hopes he could replicate his success from his tenure in west London.

But Gullit only lasted a year in the hotseat at St James’ Park before he was sacked again, having fallen out bitterly with star striker Alan Shearer.  

The 58-year-old though stated he always wanted Shearer to be part of his plans but that he was never trusted by the striker after he replaced Dalglish. As well as Newcastle, the duo had previously worked together Blackburn where they lifted the Premier League title. 

After leaving Chelsea, Gullit was welcomed to St James’ Park to become Newcastle boss

But the Dutchman endured a miserable time in the North East, falling out with Alan Shearer

Gullit (left) and Shearer’s relationship deteriorated during their year of working together 

‘I had to apply a style of football that I was used to at Chelsea,’ he said. ‘I had to do the same kind of thing, so things at Newcastle had to change.

‘Alan was part of that because I needed him as well, I didn’t want him to leave. I didn’t want him to go out. But he was just protecting himself because he thought he was not a part of that plan, and it was not the case! The only thing is he did not want to believe it. I didn’t get anything from Alan Shearer that I wanted.’

‘I wanted him  to do more for the team because he was the leader that I needed. The only thing is I didn’t get the effort and I asked him about it and he said ‘I do everything that I can’. And I knew and he knew also, we both knew I can’t win this battle.’

‘Alan was convinced of the fact I wanted to get rid of him, and it was not true. I know that Bobby [Robson] later on did. He wanted to get rid of Shearer, OK? But he was the people’s choice. You cannot fight that. It’s impossible. You cannot fight it. He is their God.’

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