Chelsea captain John Terry insists he is fully behind manager Andre Villas-Boas and has rejected reports of unrest behind the scenes at Stamford Bridge.And the rumors are beginning to fly.
Villas-Boas arrived from Europa League winners Porto this summer with a reputation as one of the brightest young managers in the game but a turbulent start to his Chelsea reign has seen him already write off his chances of winning the Premier League title.
There have been reports that the senior players at Chelsea have become unhappy with the manager's tactics, and both Nicolas Anelka and Alex demanded transfers.If you go by body language, I'd have to say that Villas-Boas has lost the confidence of Chelsea's elder statesmen. But that's just the thing: These are Chelsea's elder statesmen. I'm not sure how many good years, if any, Terry, Lampard, Drogba, et alia, have left between them. And, anytime you begin to limit the appearances of your aging superstars, feathers are going to get ruffled.
Rumours of acrimony between Terry and Villas-Boas were fuelled when Terry appeared reluctant to celebrate with Villas-Boas and the rest of the team following Ramires' opener at Molineux, where they beat Wolves 2-1 to move into fourth position.
My feeling, ultimately, is that AVB will survive. He knew coming into this situation that Chelsea need to go immediately into a rebuilding mode, something he no doubt communicated to Abramovich before he agreed to take the job. The writing was on the wall midway through the past season (though I am still a bit miffed at the canning of Ancelotti).
Nope, AVB will win this one, if there is indeed something to be won. Guus Hiddink would no doubt breathe some life into a squad that has floundered in recent weeks. He might even inspire them to take a run at the title, something that isn't entirely out of the question now that City and United each dropped three points over the long weekend. But is Hiddink the guy you want if you're going to completely reshape the squad into something that can compete with Barca? I don't think so.
Terry's days in a blue jersey could be coming to an unceremonious end this year. He's looked slow, and has been out of position on a number of occasions.
I don't think you're going to win this one, John.