Chelsea head coach Maurizio Sarri was relieved to advance in the Europa League after a disappointing performance by his team as he fought a fever in Belarus.

Olivier Giroud's first Chelsea goal since May and a 794-minute season put BATE Borisov 1-0 up in four Group L games for the first time.

The Blues remained unbeaten in 17 competitive games this season and qualified for the last 32 with two games in play.

"I was in trouble," said Sarri.

"I had a fever, it was a very tough day for me, I do not know if I'm improving or if it's just the temperature."

Icy fog in Borisov contributed to an impressive display.

"The best situation is the result. We did not play very well, "added Sarri.

"It was not easy to play a good game here. There were all the conditions to play very badly for the cold, for the opponents, for the pitch and for everything. I think we could have done better.

"I did not like the first half. We only moved the ball horizontally and slowly. It was really difficult to be dangerous.

"Better in the first 20, 25 minutes in the second half. Then we did not do very well for the last 15 minutes. "

Conveniently beaten in London last month, BATE hit the frame three times, including deep in stoppage time, and Eden Hazard's services were longer than expected in Belarus.

When the game started in the 51st minute, Hazard was fouled and sent the resulting free kick past the far post.

Meanwhile, Hazard had been canceled, and Sarri gestured wildly in his technical field, apparently in the direction of the Belgian.

Oliver Giroud scored his first goal of the season (Sergei Grits / AP)

Moments later, Giroud struck Emerson Palmieri's cross past the near post.

Giroud told BT Sport: "It's true, I was hoping to score soon because I came from the World Cup too late and had little luck. You always have to work hard and keep the faith. "

Sarri added, "I'm happy for him. He is a very important player for us because he is a very, very useful player for the team.

"But I know very well that strikers want to score. And for his trust, I find it very important.

"But I do not want him to worry because he is very important and very useful to us."



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