The new Chelsea interim manager Guus Hiddink was in the stands as his new side defeated Sunderland and eased fears of relegation with a 3-1 win at home. Stamford Bridge wasn’t the same as under Jose Mourinho and there was a lot of support for their former manager with many supporters cheering on and singing his name while booing certain players of the team.
Chelsea’s owner Roman Abramovich was also present as he watched his side win for the first time in four Premier League games, even though it was a poor Sunderland side that faced them. Chelsea moved up to 15th in the table but more importantly, it will be just how Guus takes charge of the team, the second time in his career, especially knowing that many players did have a role to play in the dismissal of their former manager.
Taking over from Mourinho would be no easy task but Hiddink needs to stamp his authority for the remaining part of the season. Here are a few things that Hiddink must do to ensure that his team respond and finish the season on a high.
- Let them play with freedom
Chelsea often looked a little tight this season and always have looked to be on rails when Mourinho was managing the club. Almost every player was given a proper role and defending was a job that everyone had to do, if they didn’t well they faced the wrath of the manager, like Eden Hazard a couple of years ago.
Hiddink is known for his ‘total-football’ management style and though he doesn’t follow it to an extent where the centre backs play as the forwards and vice versa, he still should provide the team with a degree of freedom and a chance to express themselves. The players do not have to be on chains and maybe playing with some freedom could give them the opportunity to show what they really can do.