Former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand believes Chelsea’s lack of leadership and composure is proving detrimental.
Chelsea crashed to a 2-1 defeat at Porto in Group G of the Champions League on Tuesday as their season went from bad to worse.
Defending Premier League champions Chelsea have only won two of their opening seven domestic matches to languish in 14th position this season – eight points adrift of leaders Manchester United.
And Ferdinand slammed the current crop of Chelsea players following Tuesday’s loss in Porto, telling BT Sport: “There was no composure, no real leadership out there.
“You look back on past Mourinho and Chelsea sides. You had [Didier] Drogba [now at Montreal Impact], [John] Terry and [Frank] Lampard [now at New York City] who other players could look to, and they would turn around and say, Listen I’ve been here before, don’t worry, follow me, we’ll be all right and get through this and weather the storm.’
“I didn’t see that tonight. I didn’t see players who would stand up and be counted in that way. I think they have a lot of work now to get out this group.”
Chelsea captain John Terry was benched at the Estadio do Dragao, having also been a substitute in a 2-2 draw with Newcastle United, and against Arsenal the week before.
Reigning Premier League Player of the Year Eden Hazard was also among the subs as Mourinho was haunted by his former club in Portugal.
Ferdinand added: “John Terry has been an integral part of this Chelsea side for over 12 years. It’s not just one person who can change this team. There is an intensity that I just don’t see in this Chelsea team.
“It’s been part of their make-up for many years and to win big games abroad you have to come into them with the right frame of mind.
“Seeing Hazard and Terry on the bench is destabilising for this squad. They are looking around for inspiration and are not seeing it from anyone at the moment.
“There’s a lack of confidence and communication and they are going to have to really tighten up to pick up this season.”