Football

Hiddink warns Blues to have 'desire' or else...

Hiddink says players will be dropped if they show 'no desire

Guus Hiddink has warned Chelsea's players they will face the axe if they do not show "great desire" to reverse the club's miserable Premier League fortunes.

Chelsea's interim manager revealed he told his Blues squad to "look in the mirror" on Tuesday, as he plots their path forward from Jose Mourinho's sacking.

Hiddink has not ruled out helping Chelsea identify Mourinho's long-term successor, but refused to be drawn on whether Didier Drogba would join his backroom staff.

Mourinho left Stamford Bridge last week with Chelsea technical director Michael Emenalo citing a "palpable discord" with the players after nine defeats in 16 league matches.

"Yesterday, I spoke fully to the squad and, of course, we talked a bit about the past," said Hiddink yesterday. "Why I'm here, the reasons why we are down.

"But, on the other hand, I told them things happen in football and I want everyone to look in the mirror, not just for two seconds, but longer.

"And see what anyone can contribute from now on to raise us up. That was what I was emphasising, not to look back 
too much.

HYPER-CRITICAL

"We cannot ignore what has happened in the recent past, but I asked them and told them to look in the mirror and be hyper-critical and give the best for the team.

"They have to look forward. There must be a great desire to play, yes?

"If you don't have that desire, please knock on my door and we'll talk - we'll talk briefly."

The 69-year-old believes it is still possible for Chelsea to finish in the top four, but he is under no illusions about the task he faces.

"Mathematically, it is possible," said a relaxed Hiddink.

"If you can add up, then it is possible, but this league is very strong, which has been especially proven this year with all respect to the clubs at the top - Leicester City, Crystal Palace and Watford... it is amazing and refreshing.

"It means that all the teams can kill each other."

The former Holland boss does not expect to remain at the club far beyond the end of this season, as he reprises the caretaker role he first held in 2009.

The ex-Russia coach could help Chelsea chase Mourinho's successor, with the likes of Pep Guardiola, Diego Simeone and Antonio Conte in the frame.

"At other clubs in the past, I've been speaking from time to time with the board, but not in an official capacity," said Hiddink, hinting at helping Chelsea's board in their permanent manager search.

When asked if he would consider seeking the full-time job himself, Hiddink replied: "We spoke about until the end of the season.

"First, we said let's go to mid-May, and then let's see. I will see what will happen.

"As long as I feel desire, as long as I feel passion (to do the job). I must feel inside my heart that I'm passionate to work with the guys.

"You've got to have a feeling inside your stomach you want to work with the team.

"I shouldn't be here, halfway into the season. That means things are not going as well as foreseen."

- PA Sport.

CHELSEA (EPL)Guus HiddinkUncategoriseddesire