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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Dec, 15, 2007

Grant seeks to carve out his own reputation

Chelsea boss Avram Grant refuses to look to Arsene Wenger for inspiration as he seeks to forge his own reputation in the Barclays Premier League. Grant will lock horns with Wenger - his friend for the past decade - when the Blues clash with Arsenal in a key Barclays Premier League match at the Emirates tomorrow. Victory would be the perfect way for Grant to celebrate his new four-year contract, signed on Thursday, that has ended speculation his appointment was only a stop-gap measure. A run of only one defeat in 17 matches since replacing Jose Mourinho in September has seen Grant's stock rise steadily and the Israeli wants to establish a lasting legacy at Stamford Bridge. But, while hoping to emulate the success Wenger has brought to Arsenal and make Chelsea a bigger club, he is determined to remain his own man. 'Arsene has done a great job in the last 11 years. But for me to say I want to be like this, I don't know,' he said. 'I want to be like Avram Grant. I want to do it my way. But yes, I want to build - if that's the right word. 'I want to make Chelsea bigger and bigger all the time. 'What makes a club bigger is a style that is specific for the club. 'I'm not talking about tactics because, in modern football, the players need to know more than one set of tactics. 'It's about how you move the ball, how you attack, how you defend and how you press. 'How you think about problems that come in the game. You are playing against teams that also want to win the game.' Grant may have no intention of copying Wenger's managerial style, but he insists Chelsea and Arsenal hold technical ability in similarly high regard. 'I believe very much in the technical. I believe at the end of the day you need spirit, character and without this you can't succeed,' he said. 'But the thing that wins the game is technique - if you know how to pass the ball how to make crosses. If you know how to make the right move in the right place. 'If you hold the ball and play technical football, it helps you to win more games and also it's good to watch.' One of theories behind Mourinho's exit suggested owner Roman Abramovich was growing tired of Chelsea's no-frills approach. When Grant took over, he promised his players would be given more freedom, but the power and efficiency that was the hallmark of Mourinho's team remains. Blues fans watching last Saturday's laboured 2-0 victory over Sunderland, or the frustrating goalless draw with Valencia in midweek, will have seen little evidence of the 'different way' Grant has spoken of. But the former Israel coach is growing frustrated at the attention Chelsea's style is attracting and insists there have been changes. 'I don't like that, after every game, I have to be the judge of my style of football. I need time,' he said. 'What's important is how you play, how you attack, how many players you use to attack. 'We don't play long ball, we try to play from the back and all the midfield. 'We did it in three months and I'm very happy. This style will help us to win games. 'The best defence is when you attack and when you hold the ball. 'Of course you need to know how to defend but, if you go one up, the best way to defend is to continue attacking and push the other team back. 'We want to follow the basic things that have built our style in the last few months but of course tactics are important in a game like this as well.

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