Soccer

Friday 25 July 2014

Benitez working hard to stop slide

Published 08/02/2013|15:46

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Rafael Benitez, right, was unable to shed further light on Frank Lampard's, left, future at Chelsea

Rafael Benitez insists Chelsea are working hard to end the poor run of form which has led to questions over whether the Spaniard will complete his spell as interim boss at Stamford Bridge.

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Chelsea have three wins from their last 10 matches and are without a victory in four ahead of Saturday's Premier League clash with Wigan, with their latest slip coming in a 3-2 defeat against Newcastle last weekend. The Blues would slip to fourth ahead of kick-off against Wigan if Tottenham beat Newcastle in Saturday's lunchtime match.

"We know the problems and we are working on the solutions," said Benitez, when asked if he expected to see out his short-term deal until the end of the season.

It is hard to tell whether owner Roman Abramovich is losing patience with Benitez, who replaced Roberto Di Matteo in November, but never in his 10-year tenure has the Russian had three managers in the same campaign.

"The main thing is that you can score two goals, and then you are 2-0 up at half-time, then you have to finish the games," Benitez added. "Against Newcastle we scored two goals, you cannot make these mistakes (to concede three). You have to make sure we control the game.

"We could have won all the games we didn't win. It's a question of sometimes doing the right things at the right moment, having a little bit of luck, being more clinical, not making mistakes in defence. The team is doing well in terms of the performance and we have to improve the results, especially the games we were winning."

Benitez will be without captain John Terry for the Wigan clash, and Benitez added: "John Terry has an inflammation with his knee. A set-back, but not serious. He will not be available for tomorrow."

David Luiz is fit again and Eden Hazard is available following his three-match ban following his controversial sending-off at Swansea, when clashed with a ball boy.

Ashley Cole won his 100th international cap on Wednesday as England beat Brazil 2-1, with Chelsea team-mate Frank Lampard scoring the decisive goal. Benitez was impressed with Lampard but unable to shed any fresh light on the midfielder's future.

Benitez said: "Frank is doing a great job for us, he's scoring goals, he's playing well, he's a good professional, he's very working hard. That's all I can say, because I am the coach."

Press Association

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