Gary Neville reveals wish for Chelsea players after “bottle jobs” comment

Liam Corless
Neville addressed his "bottle job" remark 24 hours on

Gary Neville told Chelsea’s players he doesn’t want his “bottle jobs” comment to stick as he addressed his already infamous comment in Sunday’s League Cup showpiece.

Neville’s description of Chelsea’s players as “billion-pound bottle jobs” has been a major talking point since the final.

The Manchester United legend made the remark on Sky Sports after Virgil van Dijk’s winning goal in the 118th-minute at Wembley.

Neville was back on co-commentary duty for Monday Night Football and was asked about the comment by anchor Dave Jones.

What Neville said on Monday Night Football

“If you hear my commentary during extra-time I was getting angrier with Chelsea from the first minute of extra-time to two minutes to go because I could smell the fear in Chelsea from the very first minute of extra-time,” Neville said.

“I got to half-time of extra-time and I said somehow Pochettino or those players have got to work out that if at the start of the season they told themselves they’ve got 15 minutes against a Liverpool team that have only got two players that would make their starting XI that they would snap their hand off. Grab this opportunity, don’t have regrets.

“Just from a playing point of view the idea of a team not seizing the day, seizing the moment… Chelsea shrunk and maybe ‘bottle’ is a very strong word but playing with fear, froze, whatever you want to call it that’s what we say yesterday.

“I don’t want that tag to stick with them because the reality is there are a lot of talented young players there. When Liverpool made those substitutions [and all the young players came on], I pulled my headphones off and said, ‘I don’t have a clue who’s playing here. I don’t know who they are.’

“This is football at the highest level where you’ve got to perform under scrutiny. I was in a position after the game where I thought ‘bottle’ is a harsh word and I only was referring to the last 30 minutes because I thought Chelsea did well in the first 90 mins.

“Pochettino said afterwards that he felt like his team were playing for penalties and it almost cemented the thought in my mind that they did freeze because why did they do what they did?”

About The Author

Liam has 10 years' experience in journalism, having previously operated as the Manchester Evening News' associate football editor, and as an editor for the Daily Mirror, the Daily Express and the Daily Star.