According to the Evening Standard, Gary Cahill told Antonio Conte that the Chelsea players needed a break after shocking defeats.
When Chelsea lost 3-0 at Stamford Bridge against Bournemouth, many though it was nothing but a blip, but when they traveled to Vicarage Road and lost 4-1 to Watford the game after, it was clear that something was wrong.
Cahill, the Chelsea captain, saw the problems and he knew that something needed changing at Chelsea before the players start dropping their heads and before Conte loses the dressing room, which Cahill has seen before with Jose Mourinho in 2015/16.
I mentioned the idea of taking more days off to the coach. I just felt that there were a lot of bad feelings around the place. It was important for everyone mentally to get away. Sometimes it’s unhealthy to be in the same environment all of the time, especially when there is a lot of negativity around for whatever reason.
He added with
This was the first time I could remember this season that we had a free week in between games. I thought it was a great opportunity to mentally freshen our minds up and physically freshen the bodies up. Everyone knows we do a lot of physical training on top of the games we are playing.
So to take ourselves away from the surroundings, for partners to be with their family and kids, gave us that distraction so that we could come back and refocus on the job.
Cahill’s proposal seemed to have worked in the short term, after beating West Brom 3-0 on Monday night, but we’ll have to wait and see to see the long term affects.