Chelsea need an anxiety cure, admits Villas-Boas

CHELSEA 0 vs LIVERPOOL 2

UNDER-FIRE Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas admits there’s no quick remedy to his side’s alarming slump which gathered unwanted momentum following last night’s Carling Cup defeat against Liverpool

Second half goals from Maxi Rodriguez and Martin Kelly inflicted on Chelsea a third defeat in their last four games at Stamford Bridge, a result which prompted their Portuguese manager to concede “I’m not a wizard”.

Already 12 points off the pace set by Premier League leaders Manchester City, Chelsea will crash out of the Champions League should they lose against Valencia next Tuesday.

“This standard won’t be enough – we need to up the tempo and play that game with the ultimate desire,” said Villas-Boas. “At the moment, at home we’ve just not been good enough. I think we need to get our fans behind us at home and we need to get the emotions right.

“I know, and you can feel, Stamford Bridge has become anxious about Chelsea playing at home, but we need their full support. That’s the only way you can build the atmosphere to take us through this period.”

Andy Carroll missed the best chance of the first half when his penalty was blocked by Ross Turnbull, but Liverpool took a deserved lead in the 58th minute when Maxi Rodriguez finished off a slick passing move. And the visitors moved to within 180 minutes of their first trip to Wembley since 1996 when Martin Kelly headed home Craig Bellamy’s free-kick five minutes later.

MATCH ANALYSIS

BY JAMES GOLDMAN

KEY MOMENT

Phil Dowd’s failure to spot the most blatant of trips by Sebastian Coates on David Luiz inside the penalty area was an astonishing error. Had Chelsea gone ahead from the penalty they should have received, it may have all been different.

DUGOUT VIEW

Unfortunately, Lucas has damaged his knee, we don’t know what the problem is. We’ll get it looked at and take it from there.

Liverpool manager, Kenny Dalglish

TALKING POINT

Defeat in the Carling Cup is unlikely to represent the straw that broke the camel’s back, but upcoming matches against Valencia, Manchester City and Spurs could be make or break for Andre Villas-Boas.