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'Chelsea lack leaders' - John Obi Mikel highlights grey area in Maurizio Sarri's team

9:51 PM SGT 11/2/19
Chelsea Eden Hazard
The Italian gaffer succeeded Antonio Conte at the helm in August but his debut season has seen the Blues manage contrasting results in the league

Former Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel has lamented the lack of leadership in Maurizio Sarri's 'fantastic' squad.

The Blues' hopes of securing a place in the top four were dealt a huge blow on Sunday after succumbing to a 6-0 loss to Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium.

The defeat saw them drop to sixth in the Premier League with a point behind fourth-placed Manchester United, and has left Sarri worried about his side's inconsistency.

A week ago, Chelsea bounced back from a 4-0 loss to Bournemouth with a 5-0 win over Huddersfield Town at Stamford Bridge.

With comparison to the Blues 'old-guard', Mikel who won two top-flight titles with the Stamford Bridge outfit before his departure to China in 2017 does not see a leader in the current Chelsea set-up.

“When I watch them now, they’re fantastic players but I don’t see leaders. During our time, I could scream at Didier Drogba or Lampard," Mikel told Sun Sport.

“I was 24 or 25 years old but I could voice my opinion and it would be heard.

“Now when I watch them, there’s no one talking to each other, taking responsibility of being the leader. You need that edge and right now that’s what they’re lacking.”

The 31-year-old recalled his dressing room experience during his days at the club and how former captain and Aston Villa assistant coach John Terry often spur the team to victory with half-time pep talks.

“If we lost a game, we may not speak to each other for a day to show this was not good and tomorrow had to be better," he continued.

“We were just so hungry. Did we take it a bit too far? Sometimes, yes, we had to.

“There were people fighting, grabbing around the neck, JT smashing the table and drinks. If we were losing a game you did not want to be in the dressing room.

“There were countless times. If we were 1-0 down at half-time and had to win, he did it time in, time out.

“The manager would speak and then leave it to JT to carry on. He smashes the whole place up and then we go back out and get the win.

“What he said, we followed. What he did, we followed. We looked at him for a reaction and we followed.

“No matter what manager came in, you had to know the figurehead of the club was John Terry.”