Terry and Benitez deny Chelsea bust-up rumours

The Blues captain insists that reports of a rift are "complete rubbish" after marking his return to the starting XI with the fourth goal in an FA Cup win over Brentford
Chelsea captain John Terry and interim boss Rafa Benitez have denied rumours that they have fallen out with each other.

The Blues manager told reporters on Thursday that the centre-back was no longer a guaranteed starter at the club but reports on Sunday had suggested that a rift had developed between the pair.

"It's complete rubbish," Terry told ITV after Sunday's 4-0 win against Brentford in their FA Cup fourth-round replay.

"There's stories today in the papers but it's complete lazy journalism. The manager knows me and knows I want to play but I've been out for three or four months but the other two [Branislav Ivanovic and Gary Cahill] have been doing well so there's a lot of competition in the side and we'll all fight for it.

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"There's no complaints from me."

Benitez echoed his captain's words, declaring: "I'm really surprised because I didn't read the press, they told me.

"It's rubbish, clearly you can see he is on the pitch and he is training and is working with the rest of the team. So it's in the end it's something you have to decide but it's okay."

Of the match itself, in which he scored the fourth and final goal, Terry opined: "First half, they made it very difficult, with two banks of four sat very deep. But when the first goal came, it was sure to come, the second and third.

"I've got a good scoring record in the FA Cup so it's good to get on the scoresheet. It's just good to be back playing - every player wants to play.

"We've had a couple of wins and, in three competitions, we'll keep plugging away. We've got another tough game on [Thursday against Sparta Prague] which we'll put ourselves through and we'll keep trying to progress in every competition."