The Blues defender admits Maurizio Sarri’s side have been letting their supporters down, with it now up to them to finish the season with a flourish
Cesar Azpilicueta concedes that Chelsea are giving their fans little to shout about, with boos from certain sections of the Blues support completely understandable.
Maurizio Sarri’s side remain in the hunt for a top-four finish and Europa League glory, but there is no wave of optimism sweeping through Stamford Bridge.
Instead, a cloud of frustration hangs over the west London club, with a dramatic 2-1 victory over Cardiff last time out doing little to improve the mood despite the end result.
Eden Hazard and N’Golo Kante were rested against the Bluebirds, with the former stepping off the bench in the second half, and questions continue to be asked of Sarri and his players.
Azpilicueta, as captain, admits the criticism is fair as those out on the field have failed to perform at the standard expected of them.
The Spaniard said of the terrace taunts: “I cannot complain about the fans.
“We have to give them something to enjoy on the pitch. With recent performances it is normal they are not happy. It’s up to us to turn this around.
“We have always had their support in the bad moments, and when things are going well, we all enjoy them together.
“We have a great chance starting Wednesday [against Brighton] at the Bridge to play a great game and create a great atmosphere.”
Chelsea have kept themselves in the hunt for Champions League qualification with a dogged display at Cardiff, sitting just a point off the pace, but are struggling for a spark.
That is particularly true on the road, where the Blues have won just two of their last six away games in the Premier League.
Azpilicueta added, with a 2-0 defeat at Everton prior to the international break followed by a narrow win in south Wales after it: “I think in the last couple of games, the performances have not been at our level. We didn’t create a lot of chances, we conceded goals in an easy way. I think there is a lot to improve.
“We are nearly at the end of the season so we must step up. Yesterday we showed great character because we normally don’t come back from bad results. Yesterday was the second time in the Premier League that we did so.
“We got the three points but we have to be critical and we know we have to do better.”
Chelsea will get the chance to build some momentum in back-to-back home dates with Brighton and West Ham, with a trip to title-chasing Liverpool then set to be sandwiched by the two legs of a Europa League quarter-final clash with Slavia Prague.
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