‘The Happy One’ is no more after Chelsea goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer revealed that Jose Mourinho has lost the smile on his face since Chelsea’s recent inconsistent form.
Mourinho proclaimed he was a changed man when he returned to Stanford Bridge in the summer, claiming he was more relaxed that his previous spell in charge. However, following the Champions League defeat to Basle on Tuesday night – although the result was enough to send them into the last 16 – and the fortunate 2-2 draw with West Brom, combined with the 2-0 loss at Newcastle, it seems Mourinho has returned to his darker days.
Schwarzer, who joined the Blues on a free transfer in July from Fulham to provide back-up for Peter Cech, has told the Evening Standard that the manager’s demeanour has changed.
He said: “The expectations are very high here and that starts first and foremost with the manager.
“He demands a certain level of performance and consistency and when we’re not achieving that obviously you’re going to know about it. He’s not going to be walking around with a smile on his face and that’s understandable.”
Despite their struggles, Chelsea face Southampton on Sunday sitting just four points behind League leaders Arsenal in the table.
Since last lifting the trophy in 2010, Chelsea have tended to reach this stage of the campaign trailing by a much larger margin and defender Branislav Ivanovic believes it’s a reason to remain positive.
He added: “We have learned from the last couple of years that we need to try to be at our top level every game. I think the season will be like the last two — very long for us. There will be a lot of difficult games and moments but we have to stay strong.”
Ramires has helped the club finish second, sixth and third since joining from Benfica in 2010 and knows how tough it will be to take the title.
The midfielder said: “We have the skills to win the Premier League but we have to prove it on the pitch.”