The Blues’ technical director has admitted there was “palpable discord between manager and players” at Stamford Bridge and acknowledged the team is in real trouble
Chelsea technical director Michael Emenalo says the decision to part ways with Jose Mourinho was made to “protect the interests of the club” and admitted the coach’s relationship with individual players had broken down.
The Portuguese coach left Stamford Bridge on Thursday after a disastrous start to the season that has left the Blues just one point above the relegation places with 16 league games played.
Addressing the decision to remove Mourinho, Emenalo admitted there was “palpable discord” between players and manager but acknowledged it was difficult to dismiss a man who won a Premier League title seven months ago.
“While there is a huge sentiment for the individual who had done so much for the club, the fact of the matter remains that Chelsea are in trouble, the results are not good, there is palpable discord between manager and players and it is time to act,” he told Chelsea TV.
“The owner is forced to make what was a very tough decision for the good of the club. Make no mistake about it, Chelsea, one of the biggest clubs in the world, is one point above relegation from the Premier League and that’s not good enough.
“This is essentially the same group of players who won the league and the League Cup last season. They did it in style, by showing commitment and by sweating blood.
“They played to instruction, they adhered to everything the manager asked them to do.
“They [the players] have a responsibility to go out and prove everybody wrong and show a certain level of commitment to the decision that has been made tonight to try to get the club up the league [table]. That’s what they need to do.”
Emenalo says the club is working hard on finding a replacement for Mourinho, with Sunderland set to visit Stamford Bridge on Saturday.
“You are not a big club if you don’t have big plans for situations like this,” he added. “We are a big club with quality coaches embedded throughout the club and I can tell you we will be OK for Saturday.
“We will have competent people come out and help with the preparation for the game on Saturday.
“The club is working vigorously and actively to make sure the situation with regards to a managerial appointment is taken care of as soon as possible.”