Gary Cahill says victory over Cottagers is essential after Basel reverse.
Gary Cahill says Fulham ‘must’ beat Fulham in their next match after slumping to a second consecutive defeat in their Champions League opener against FC Basel.
The Blues host their West London neighbours next Saturday evening and go into the match on the back of successive defeats after reverses against Everton and the Swiss.
Jose Mourinho’s side have also failed to score in consecutive Premier League matches and the Portuguese’s much heralded return to Stamford Bridge is already threatening to turn sour.
England centre half Cahill was beaten to ball for Basel’s winner on Wednesday and the 27-year-old is desperate to make amends against the Cottagers.
“We need to win our next game now, as simple as that,” Cahill said. “The manager will stress that. We’ve got the squad to do it, we need to go on now and get back to winning ways on Saturday.”
The 2-1 defeat by the Swiss champions was only the sixth home loss in Chelsea’s long European history and Cahill said: “It’s not a disaster but it’s not ideal. A club like this wants to win the majority of games it plays. That’s the expectation. It’s a blow but it’s not the be all and end all.”
“It’s a big shock really,” Cahill added. “We gave them a bit too much room all over the pitch but first half, we looked like we were in control of the game.
“In the second half we didn’t quite step it up that level and we paid the price for it. We played against them twice last year and they’re a very good side. The onus was on us to step it up and we didn’t quite do that. At this sort of level we get punished and we’re obviously disappointed.
“We were in control at 1-0 up, we knew we could go up a level. I’m repeating myself but we didn’t do that and that’s what cost us the game.”
Cahill admitted Chelsea’s defensive performance would come under scrutiny.
“You can always do better, you can always analyse goals and have a look, definitely,” he said. “The back four, goalkeepers, individuals. We’ll have a look at that.”