The terms losing matches, defeat and disarray aren’t those that you would have associated with Chelsea back in September but today is another story. After the departure of Ray Wilkins Chelsea fell apart, it might have had nothing to do with the axe but to the assuming fan it looked that way. After winning just one of their last six games and falling down to fourth in the table who knows what will happen over the festive period.
The sacking of Ray Wilkins and the affect it has had on the team has not been spoken about much by the players but Florent Malouda spoke to Sky Sports about the ‘strange’ decision this week. He said: “Ray was close to the players and in training he was involved in the animation of the sessions. It was a big strain to see him leave like this and we were not prepared for that.
“I first heard what had happened in the afternoon when it was announced. It was a shock. What we need is stability and obviously the players cannot react to this decision. We can’t use it as an excuse and the fans do not want excuses for why we have not been winning but good performances to turn it around.”
Several of Chelsea’s star players have been absent of late, with injuries to John Terry and Frank Lampard and the suspension of Michael Essien, which too could have accounted for Chelsea’s fall in form. Without these players Chelsea seem to have lost their spark and the Premier League title seems to be falling from their grasp. In saying all this they’re all back now. Lampard has been missing since August and his return is bound to boost morale in camp. The midfielder has been speaking to The Daily Telegraph this week, and he believes Chelsea can still win the title.
Lampard said: “Injuries have been tough on us and some months tough on us. But with the spirit and ability we have got in our team if we play like that, I have confidence we can do it. It is very tough. We will have to fight on a few fronts. Man City are there now, Arsenal, Man United, as we know. Teams like Tottenham are pushing from behind. So we have to be at our best, but if we are at our best I think we can win it.”
With Chelsea’s slide in performance also comes rumours regarding manager Carlo Ancelotti. Italian newspaper Impero Romanista claimed that Ancelotti has been deemed a possible candidate to takeover as manager of Roma. Questioning Ancelotti’s commitment can only be detrimental to Chelsea’s season so the team need to look past the rumours and the reports and focus on performing on the pitch. With tough games against Manchester United and Arsenal ahead Chelsea will need to step up if they want to be counted in the title race.