Mourinho unsure if Chelsea have turned corner

Date published: Friday 23rd October 2015 5:50

Chelsea: Celebrate goal against Aston Villa last weekend

Jose Mourinho admits he does not know whether Chelsea’s poor start to the season is behind them going into Saturday’s trip to West Ham.

The Premier League champions sit 12th in the table after nine games, having belatedly recorded a third win by beating Aston Villa last Saturday.

That was followed by a goalless Champions League draw at Dynamo Kiev, but Mourinho is uncertain if Chelsea are now climbing from their lowest point of the season.

“I don’t know. I just know that the team was always together, the players were always together,” Mourinho added.

“The players were man enough to assume responsibility and to say even publicly some of them that they were feeling responsibilities in their individual poor start.

“Statistics are very clear for us. As an example, we conceded six goals as a consequence of isolated individual mistakes.

“But the team was always together. We’ve got two important results, three points in the Premier League after two matches without a victory and against a direct rival for qualification in the Champions League (Dynamo) we got a point away and the chance in 15 days to play against them.

“The mood improves with results and people are happy.”

Eden Hazard, Chelsea’s leading performer last term, was dropped against Villa but returned to the starting XI in Ukraine.

Mourinho declined to say if the Belgium playmaker would start at Upton Park but merely spoke about his contribution at Dynamo after demanding an improved work ethic.

“I don’t know (if Hazard will start),” said Mourinho, who has the same squad as he had for Tuesday’s game, so Pedro and Loic Remy remain out.

“He played the last match and played for 90 minutes and he was part of the compact team that kept that clean sheet.

“I’m happy with his contribution against Dynamo and that’s it.”

West Ham have made a fine start to sit fourth under Slaven Bilic, a manager Mourinho admires.

“As a coach, I like (him) a lot,” Mourinho added.

“Since the Croatian national team period to Besiktas and now to West Ham, I have a very good image, idea, about him.

“As a person, I don’t know him very well, but I have the feeling that we could be friends.”

Despite the troubled start to the season, Mourinho insists Chelsea are “not afraid to lose”.

“Premier League is 38 matches, lots of points. You lose today, you try to win tomorrow,” he added.

“At this moment in the Premier League we are not afraid to lose matches. We are going to play normal.”

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