Nothing has gone right for the Premier League champions Chelsea since the season started back in August and the side look a stark contrast to the side that ran away with the title 12 months ago.
The dismal showing has included several fall-outs in the camp, the manager losing his job and first-team stars wanting to leave the club - all serving as warning signs for the future.
PROVE THE CREDENTIALS
Interim manager Guus Hiddink, however, has made it very clear to the current squad that each one of them are fighting for their future at Stamford Bridge ahead the arrival of Antonio Conte.
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Speaking to the press after suffering his first league loss during his second stint with the Blues, Hiddink was quoted by Goal.com saying: “It is a clean slate, everyone has to fight for his position with the new manager coming in of course.”
The incoming Italian boss will take charge of proceedings after finishing his commitments with the national side at Euro 2016 but he will already have one eye on the performances of the squad that he is about to inherit this summer.
MOTIVATION IS KEY
As well as Conte’s arrival, the Dutchman also insisted that players should be proud to represent the west London club and that alone should be enough motivation to perform at the top of their game.
He added: “There is that, but when you play at Chelsea, you must always be proud with internal motivation.
“If you play only with external motivation, worrying about material things or your position, you are slipping away. The intrinsic motivation is a condition that has to be there if you are to say a player is suitable for a big club.”
Hiddink has handed the fringe players the chance to prove themselves in recent weeks and despite finding success at Aston Villa, they were given a reality check by Swansea last weekend.
“I said after beating Villa we will see what the players can do in bigger games. This was a bigger game because of the importance to Swansea.”
With six games remaining in the term, the Blues face a daunting task of securing a European spot for 2016-17 and it is looking increasingly likely they will only be competing on a domestic front next season.
Chelsea currently lie in tenth position in the league with 44 points in 32 games, and their European football dream looks all but over after the defeat against Swansea on Saturday.
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