Under-fire Chelsea manager Graham Potter played down boos from the travelling Blues fanbase after his side suffered a chastening 4-0 FA Cup defeat at Manchester City on Sunday.
Chelsea supporters chanted the name of Potter’s predecessor Thomas Tuchel during the drubbing and booed their team off at half time and full time.
“We can’t do anything but do our jobs better and work harder,” said the former Brighton boss. “We understand the supporters’ frustration but our job is to do our job. There are always other opinions, criticism and negativity, but that’s part of the challenge.”
Chelsea mustered just one shot on target as they slipped to a sixth defeat in their last nine matches – form which Potter conceded was unsustainable.
“The results in a small space of time aren’t positive,” he said. “You can make excuses and look for reasons, or you can say that it isn’t good enough and both of those answers are correct. Clearly we’re suffering and it’s not nice, but it’s where we are at the moment.”
City raced into a three-goal lead before the break through Riyad Mahrez’s free kick, a Julian Alvarez penalty and a fine team goal finished by Phil Foden.
Mahrez completed the scoring with another spot-kick five minutes from time to set up a potential fourth round tie against Premier League title rivals Arsenal, who face Oxford United on Monday.
Chelsea lacked cohesion without several first-team players available but still looked worryingly passive against opponents who also rested key figures including Erling Haaland.
Potter insisted last week he retained the support of chairman Todd Boehly, who lured him from Brighton soon after leading a takeover of the club last summer.
City manager Pep Guardiola called for Chelsea to break from the hire-and-fire culture of the Roman Abramovich era and be patient with the English coach.
“I would say to Todd Boehly: give him time. I know at big clubs results are important but give him time,” said Guardiola.
“What he did at Brighton was outstanding. At Barcelona, I didn’t need two seasons because I had Messi.”