Chelsea v Schalke: Onus on Blues warns Gary Cahill
Chelsea are looking to bounce back following defeat to Newcastle at the weekend
Wednesday 06 November 2013
Defender Gary Cahill hopes Chelsea heed the instructions of Jose Mourinho and take the initiative in Wednesday night's Champions League contest with Schalke.
The Blues are bidding to respond from Saturday's 2-0 loss at Newcastle and the defeat to Basle in the most recent Champions League home game to consolidate their place at the top of Group E.
"The onus will be on us, being at home, to be on the front foot," Cahill said.
"We're at Stamford Bridge and if we go out with the same attitude as in the away leg (a 3-0 win), I'm sure we'll be okay."
Mourinho was less than impressed with the display at Newcastle and even his half-time warning was not enough to rouse his troops from their first-half lethargy as a six-match winning run came to an abrupt and surprise end.
"The problem for me was just the attitude," Mourinho said.
"I expect my team to be much more than it was against Newcastle.
"I was frustrated because I want my team to be always active and proactive and not reactive and not waiting for things to happen.
"And I just simply didn't like (it). I want better from my team."
As an unused substitute at St James' Park, Cahill was largely absolved of blame of a result which shocked following wins against Schalke, Manchester City and Arsenal.
But he and his team-mates are after a response against Schalke, beaten 3-0 in Gelsenkirchen two weeks' ago.
The England centre-back added: "As players, you want to get straight back out there and put things right. It gives us the opportunity to do that."
Chelsea play at Stamford Bridge in the Champions League for the first time since Swiss side Basle inflicted the Blues' first home loss in the group stage of the tournament in 29 matches and nearly 10 years.
Since they have won 4-0 at Steaua Bucharest and 3-0 at Schalke, with two goals from Fernando Torres, who faces a scan on Wednesday to determine the extent of his leg injury suffered in training.
The Spain international will miss Saturday's match with West Brom, while left-back Ryan Bertrand, who withdrew from training on Tuesday, like Torres, is also absent for the Schalke contest.
Mourinho is wary of the Germans, despite the clear margin of victory in the first contest.
He added: "I don't know what they want from the group phase, if they are going to try everything to finish first or if they are going just to try to finish second and progress in the Champions League.
"I have to prepare my team for both situations. But, for sure, they are a difficult opponent and the result in Germany, 0-3, means nothing."
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