New Chelsea manager Rafael Benitez has been greeted at Stamford Bridge with more than just a little animosity. Since his arrival the fans have made their thoughts known all too well that he has to earn their respect. However, after the club’s 3-1 loss to West Ham United on Saturday Dec. 1 at Upton Park he already doubts his future at Stamford Bridge.
It has already been made abundantly clear that Benitez on has a contract until the end of the current season, but at the rate his side are shipping points out the door he could be out much quicker. In his 10 days in charge the club have taken two points out of a possible nine and now are facing a must win match in the UEFA Champions League on the back of three terrible performances.
Speaking to the press after the Blues loss this weekend the manager attempted to seem cool and calm but after hearing chants from the crowd of “you don’t know what you’re doing,” “You are not welcome here,” and “You’re getting sacked in the morning,” he was far from confident in his current tenure was looking great:
I would say that it depends on the things that we can do on the pitch. So, if we improve on the pitch, it will be easier for everyone.
No, I am not 100 per cent. We didn’t win today – that is the main thing.
It could be in terms of, it’s a top side, it’s in the middle of the season and obviously the results were not the best, so we will try improving things and it will take some times maybe. We will see.
Whatever the case, Benitez attempted to pass off some of the blame to the lack of several key players being injured and potentially players lacking the correct attitude:
We have some of them. But, obviously, we have also players who are injured who will come back and they will give another character or something different.
The kind of players that we have, sometimes they have to be in possession.
And when you are not in possession, physically, you have to cope and manage with players who are quite strong and we didn’t do it well.
Before the post-match press conferences were over, West Ham manager Sam Allardyce put the current state of Chelsea affairs in the perfect perspective:
You can’t do it if the fans aren’t behind you.
But the only way you can get the fans behind you is to win. If you’re winning, the fans will always, always be behind you.
The message is clear that Benitez has a lot of work to do; luckily for him he has an immediate chance to make a difference as the Blues are facing elimination from the Champions League on Wednesday Dec. 5, 2012 when FC Nordsjaelland comes to Stamford Bridge. The Blues have to win to have any chance, and will hope that Shakhtar Donestsk can defeat defending Italian champions Juventus at the Donbass Arena in order to seal the deal.
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