Chelsea coach Claudio Ranieri admitted he wept with the emotion of watching his side beat Arsenal l 2-1 on Tuesday to earn a place in the Champions League semi-finals.
Ranieri, whose job has been under threat since Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich bought the club, said: “To describe my joy is difficult…I was mad…30 seconds of delirium.”
Until last night, Chelsea had not beaten their London rivals in 17 matches, 14 of them under Ranieri.
“This victory can change something,” Ranieri said.
“We must believe in ourselves. It is history,” he added.
Chelsea will meet Monaco in the semi-finals after the principality side beat Real Madrid on away goals.
“It’s not good news because I know Real Madrid very well,” said Ranieri, who coached Madrid’s rivals Atletico as well as Valencia before moving to Chelsea in 2000.
“If Monaco won it is because Monaco have very good players, a good coach and a good fitness coach,” he said.
Ranieri also believes that Chelsea can now challenge Arsenal in the Premier League.
“We can win the Champions League now, why not? Everything is possible, “he said.
“I think this can transform the season and we want to catch Arsenal in the league.”
Meanwhile, Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger, who a week ago last week was looking at a treble of trophies, conceded that the defeat was a big setback after Saturday’s 1-0 loss to Manchester United in the FA Cup semi-final.
“Once you hit the wall it takes some time to recover,” he said.
“Chelsea are just on the way up, while we’re on the way down a little bit. We’ve crossed on the way,” the Frenchman said.
“The whole team looked tired. We now have to survive over the weekend. Football is cruel,” he added.