Mikel: 99% of Chelsea players want Hiddink to stay

The midfielder appears to have aimed another dig at Jose Mourinho, saying the Dutchman has improved the atmosphere at Stamford Bridge and created a more relaxed environment
Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel says 99% of the club's players want Guus Hiddink to become their permanent manager.

The Dutchman was appointed caretaker boss in December following the dismissal of Jose Mourinho but, despite overseeing a turnaround in form, insists he will retire in the summer.

It is the second time Hiddink has taken temporary charge of the Blues, having won the FA Cup in 2009 during his first spell as interim boss.

Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone and Italy boss Antonio Conte have been strongly linked with Chelsea, but Mikel says the current incumbent is the right man for the job.

He said: "It is the choice of the owner, the club and the board. They will have to decide.
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"But if you speak to the players, 98 or 99 per cent of them want him to stay so I mean, we are very happy, we are performing well and let’s hope this continues.

"It depends on the board and it depends on Guus if he wants to continue. He has said that he is here until the end of the season but you never know, he might change his mind.

"If the club want to appoint him fair enough. His record speaks for itself."

Mikel recently appeared to aim a dig in the direction of Mourinho after revealing there was a breakdown in communication with the Portuguese.

And the Nigeria international again appeared to target his former boss as he endorsed Hiddink's credentials.

"The players feel more relaxed, people know what their jobs are and people are getting on with their jobs in a more relaxed way. And in a way which means they can perform very well. He [Hiddink] doesn’t get into people’s business."