Sport Soccer

Friday 19 January 2018

Chelsea’s Villas-Boas calls for supporters’ help after third defeat

Duncan Bech

Andre Villas-Boas admits Stamford Bridge has become "anxious" after Chelsea were dumped out of the Carling Cup with a 2-0 defeat by Liverpool.

The pressure on Villas-Boas intensified as goals from Maxi Rodriguez and Martin Kelly subjected the Blues to their third home defeat in four games.

It was a feeble and toothless display from Chelsea, who face critical fixtures at Stamford Bridge against Valencia and Manchester City over the next two weeks.

Villas-Boas insists the club need the support of their fans like never before.

"Away from home we've been more solid statistically and as a team. At home we just haven't been good enough," he said.

"We need to get our fans behind us and get the emotion right. You can feel Stamford Bridge has become anxious.

"We therefore need support. We need atmosphere to get us past this period.

"We have two big games at home where we need our fans behind us and I'm sure they'll do exactly that."

Fernando Torres was anonymous against former club Liverpool, but Villas-Boas is backing the £50million Spain striker to come good, despite warning him he is likely to lose his place against Newcastle.

"It will come with confidence and time. We believe in him and will continue to pursue his individual form," he said.

"Our task as technical staff is to get the best out of players and if we don't do that then we have failed.

"It takes time and Fernando faces a tough time. He must compete because at the moment Didier Drogba is showing good signs."

Kenny Dalglish praised Craig Bellamy after the Wales forward inspired Liverpool's victory.

Bellamy returned to action little more than 48 hours after being withdrawn from the squad for Sunday's clash with Manchester City on compassionate grounds.

The 32-year-old was mourning the loss of friend Gary Speed and stood with his head bowed during the minute's applause held at Stamford Bridge tonight in remembrance of the Wales manager.

In the second half Bellamy came alive, setting up the goals for Rodriguez and Kelly as Chelsea were swept aside.

"Craig is a fantastic footballer who had a hugely disappointing day on Sunday. He regarded Gary Speed as a mentor," said Dalglish.

"It was great for the wee man, making the first goal. For the second he took the free kick. He told Martin to leave it, it was going in!"

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