Chelsea need win to get back on track says Florent Malouda

 

Florent Malouda has insisted the solution to Chelsea's current woes is simple: victories, starting in tonight's Champions League clash at Bayer Leverkusen.

The Blues have made their worst start to a season since Roman Abramovich bought the club, amid a host of on and off-field setbacks that have piled the pressure on the club.

But three points in this evening's Champions League Group E encounter at the BayArena would send Chelsea into the knockout stages and help lift the gloom at Stamford Bridge.

Malouda refused to go into detail about precisely what has gone wrong this season but the winger was in no doubt what was needed to turn things around.

"We have a great opportunity by winning this game to finish first in our group," he said.

"I think, actually, that's what we need more than comments or explanations or analysis on what's been going wrong.

"We all have inside a feeling about what's been going wrong, and we need to correct it. This is a perfect opportunity to do that.

"Winning will get us back on track and back in a dynamic positive circle."

Manager Andre Villas-Boas, who Malouda insisted was not to blame for the current slump, added: "The next game is against Leverkusen and it's another opportunity for us to get things back on track.

"Two draws will get us through, but that's not what we're looking for.

"We try to take the initiative in every game, and it won't be different here."

There was more bad news for Villas-Boas last night when he was fined £12,000 and warned as to his future conduct by the Football Association over his verbal attack on referee Chris Foy after Chelsea's west London derby defeat at QPR.

Villas-Boas was found guilty of improper conduct by an independent regulatory commission for the comments made after the Blues' controversial 1-0 Barclays Premier League defeat at Loftus Road on October 23.

The Chelsea manager has requested written reasons for the guilty verdict and fine before deciding whether to appeal.

Leverkusen boss Robin Dutt backed Villas-Boas to turn the Blues' season around but was determined to exploit their current fragility tonight.

"We know that Chelsea really aren't doing that well at the moment," he said.

"They've dropped points recently.

"That doesn't make them any worse - we have respect for their players - but they're under certain pressure, too."

No-one would enjoy piling on the misery for Chelsea more than Michael Ballack, who was jettisoned by the club 18 months ago.

The Leverkusen midfielder has been wearing a protective mask this month after breaking his nose but has shrugged off the injury in typical fashion.

Dutt said: "The way he's played in the last few matches and months, he's incredibly important. There's no question about that.

"In our team, there is hardly anyone who has played in the Champions League.

"For most players, it's new territory. It's good to have an experienced player in form."

PA

News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Joel Edgerton, John Turturro and Christian Bale in Exodus: Gods and Kings
film Ridley Scott reveals truth behind casting decisions of Exodus
News
people
Sport
footballArsenal 2 Borussia Dortmund 0: And they can still top the group
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
An unseen image of Kurt Cobain at home featured in the film 'Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck'
filmThe singers widow and former bandmates have approved project
News
Andy Murray with his girlfriend of nine years, Kim Sears who he has got engaged to
peopleWimbledon champion announces engagement to girlfriend Kim Sears
Arts and Entertainment
Jake Quickenden and Edwina Currie are joining the I'm A Celebrity...Get Me Out Of Here! camp
tv
Arts and Entertainment
George Mpanga has been shortlisted for the Critics’ Choice prize
music
News
Albert Camus (left) and Jean-Paul Sartre fell out in 1952 and did not speak again before Camus’s death
people
Arts and Entertainment
Roisin, James and Sanjay in the boardroom
tvReview: This week's failing project manager had to go
News
Ed Miliband visiting the Holocaust museum in Jerusalem. The Labour leader has spoken more openly of his heritage recently
newsAttacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But are the barbs more sinister?
Arts and Entertainment
'Felfie' (2014) by Alison Jackson
photographyNew exhibition shows how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
News
i100
Life and Style
Fright night: the board game dates back to at least 1890
life
Environment
The vaquita is being killed by fishermen trying to catch the totoaba fish, which is prized in China
environmentJust 97 of the 'world's cutest' sea mammals remain
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game
There's a Good Girl exhibition: How female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising

In pictures: There's a Good Girl exhibition

The new exhibition reveals how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover - from advent calendars to doll's houses

UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover

It worked with cupcakes, doughnuts and macarons so no wonder someone decided to revamp the humble biscuit
Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

It's no surprise that the building game born in Sweden in 2009 and now played by millions, has imitators keen to construct their own mega money-spinner
The King's School is way ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology

Staying connected: The King's School

The school in Cambridgeshire is ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology. Richard Garner discovers how teachers and pupils stay connected
Christmas 2014: 23 best women's perfumes

Festively fragrant: the best women's perfumes

Give a loved one a luxe fragrance this year or treat yourself to a sensual pick-me-up
Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition

Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund

The Ox celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition
Billy Joe Saunders vs Chris Eubank Jnr: When two worlds collide

When two worlds collide

Traveller Billy Joe Saunders did not have a pampered public-school upbringing - unlike Saturday’s opponent Chris Eubank Jnr
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?