Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Mourinho Is Facing Mutiny at Chelsea; Stars Angered by Criticism Players Singled out by Jose Boss Given Crude Nicknamemourinho Fighting to Stay in Control of Chelsea Squad

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Mourinho Is Facing Mutiny at Chelsea; Stars Angered by Criticism Players Singled out by Jose Boss Given Crude Nicknamemourinho Fighting to Stay in Control of Chelsea Squad

Article excerpt

Byline: James Olley Chief Football Correspondent EXCLUSIVE

JOSE MOURINHO is fighting to stay in control of the Chelsea dressing room with several players increasingly unhappy at his handling of the club.

Standard Sport understands a significant section of the first-team squad have become unsettled by Mourinho's public criticism of individuals in the team and among his backroom staff.

It is believed that one senior player at the club has a derogatory one-word nickname for Mourinho also used in secret by some of his most disaffected team-mates.

Mourinho's post-match rant on Sky television following the Blues' defeat to Southampton on October 3 was in part intended to instigate a public show of support from those above and below him at the club amid ongoing rumours of unrest -- he had previously complained about the "rats" leaking information about the turbulence behind the scenes.

The Blues' hierarchy responded by taking the unusual step of issuing a public vote of confidence after Mourinho raised the possibility -- without provocation -- that he could be sacked.

Then a handful of journalists were last week invited to Chelsea's training ground to conduct interviews with players happy to place on record their support of the Portuguese boss.

A number of players including Gary Cahill, Cesc Fabregas and Kurt Zouma spoke out during the international break in defence of their beleaguered manager.

However, privately the situation is thought to remain decidedly tense. Poor results have exacerbated concerns over Mourinho's treatment of the squad with certain individuals singled out for substandard performances while others have been retained in the starting line-up despite suffering their own dip in form.

Mourinho's ability to create a togetherness in teams has been a hallmark of his success but the ruthlessness with which he has treated certain players -- and former club doctor Eva Carneiro, who was popular among the squad -- has caused considerable unease. …

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