If you’d asked 100 football fans before the start of the season who the best manager in world football was, at least half of them would have answered with the words ‘Jose Mourinho’.
The 52-year-old hasn’t suddenly become a bad coach overnight, although it’s probably fair to say he’s made things more difficult for himself over recent months. There are a number of Chelsea players who are letting their manager down - badly.
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As Mourinho said himself earlier this month, he’s clearly the best manager for Chelsea Football Club. Nobody will be able to do a better job than him and Roman Abramovich should give the former Inter Milan and Real Madrid head coach more time to turn the situation around.
But unless the following six players snap out of their current rut and start earning their money, it’s hard to see Mourinho surviving until Christmas.
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Arguably the Premier League’s best right-back over the past three or four seasons, Branislav Ivanovic has been a total liability this term.
Chelsea’s vice-captain has looked more like 41 than 31 and his rapid decline has left many at the Bridge scratching their heads.
If Abramovich ordered Ivanovic to follow Mourinho out of Chelsea, he could have few complaints.
Oscar was once tipped to become one of the world’s best playmakers, but he’s nowhere close to that level.
The 24-year-old has only been handed a handful of Premier League appearances by Mourinho this term because when he’s on the pitch he often flatters to deceive.
It’s time for Chelsea to look for a replacement.
Forget the recent backlash, Eden Hazard is world-class - he’s just not showed it this season.
The Belgium international was outstanding last term and was expected to take his performances up another level this season, but that simply hasn’t happened.
Has the Eva Carneiro incident affected him? Hazard was the player, remember, who was treated by the doctor in that season-opener against Swansea City.
Something’s up with Hazard - one goal and three assists from 10 matches is a poor return for a player of his calibre - but Chelsea fans shouldn’t doubt his quality.
Nemanja Matic’s performances have been, quite frankly, terrible at times this season.
What happened to the midfield monster who dominated for Chelsea throughout the 2014-15 campaign?
His red card against West Ham on Saturday summed up his season so far: embarrassing.
Last season, Cesc Fabregas scored three goals and provided 19 assists in the Premier League alone.
From 10 matches this season, the Spaniard has failed to hit the back of the net and has registered just one assist. Not good enough - at all.
Like Hazard, Chelsea fans shouldn’t doubt Cesc’s quality - he’s a class act. But he’s another star name letting his manager down.
When he’s not injured or suspended, Diego Costa is trying his best to fight opponents on the pitch.
This was always the risk when Chelsea signed the Brazil-born Spain international from Atletico Madrid, but little was said last season after he scored 20 Premier League goals.
Now, though, it’s become a major issue. Costa has scored two Premier League goals so far this season.
The 27-year-old must focus on scoring goals, but whether he’s capable of controlling his temper is doubtful.
Chelsea should seriously consider signing a replacement in 2016 if he fails to change his ways.
Chelsea fans: which players do you believe are letting Jose Mourinho down? Have your say by leaving a comment in the box below!
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