The Nigerian midfielder John obi Mikel has come out in support of the manager Rafa Benitez by saying that the fans do not help the team by criticising the manager. The Chelsea fans have made it clear from the start that they did not welcome the appointment of the former Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez due to the history between him and the club. Benitez criticised the Chelsea fans on a number of occasions when he was the Liverpool manager. As a result, there has been a lot of support for the former manager Roberto di Matteo, while also equal criticism for the current man.

Chelsea were just four points behind leaders Manchester United when Benitez arrived at the club, but they are now almost 20 points behind the Red Devils. The Spaniard was once again subjected to criticism during the FA Cup match against Manchester United during the weekend. Chelsea were losing 2-0 after just 11 min on the clock. Benitez brought on the defensive midfielder John obi Mikel in place of Lampard, while Hazard replaced the winger Victor Moses. It was a decision that was met with chorus of disapproval from the Chelsea fans, but it later turned out to be the reason behind Chelsea’s impressive comeback in the second half.

“Sometimes it doesn’t help when the fans are not happy. When you give the ball away there is pressure. This is our job. Fans come to watch the football and we have a responsibility to pay them back and make sure we play well. Every game we try to do that, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. I have been here for seven years and they (the fans) are fantastic and have always supported us until the end,” said Mikel after the 2-2 draw with Manchester United that forced the tie into a replay.


The Chelsea manager Rafa Benitez has said that he is extremely happy with the character of the performance shown by the team to come back from being a goal down to win against Everton during the weekend. This fixture has always been the toughest for the club in recent seasons, as they were without a win at Goodison Park since April 2008. Things looked like going for the worse once again after they conceded a goal just 63 seconds into the match through Steven Pienaar. Chelsea’s passing and chance creation were also extremely poor during the first 20 min of the match.

However, two goals from the midfielder Frank Lampard in either half helped Chelsea win the match 2-1. This also helped them stay 11 points behind United in the table. Any dropped points in this match would have meant goodbye to the title, which is the reason for this victory being extremely significant according to Benitez. Lampard once again proved his worth to the Chelsea team by scoring two goals. His first goal was a header just before half-time, while his second goal came in a crucial time when Everton were looking to regain their lead. The 34-year-old Frank Lampard is out of contract at the end of the season.

“We’re not disappointed because we played really well and we’ve run the European champions really close. but we didn’t quite have enough in the end. We had played well enough to get a second goal but had been unfortunate, having shots back off the woodwork. I thought we were a bit unlucky. We tried to make what we had work the best we could today and for long periods I thought we did,” said the Everton manager David Moyes. The win moves Chelsea back into the third position ahead of Tottenham.