Benitez bemoans Saints defeat

Chelsea interim boss Rafael Benitez was left disappointed by his

team’s efforts as they lost 2-1 to Southampton.

First-half goals from Jay Rodriguez and Rickie Lambert either

side of John Terry’s header ensured it was Saints who claimed the

points and Benitez admitted the performance was not good enough as

they dropped to fourth.

“You have to be really disappointed when you do not win,” the

Spaniard told Sky Sports.

“In the first half we did not play with the intensity required.

In the second half we were much better and had more chances but the

decisions in the final third were wrong. At least we had

chances.

“We knew we were in a really good position and we’re still in a

good position but in the remaining games we must do something more

and win.

“We have to start thinking about the next game as we cannot

change the result now.”

That next game is an FA Cup quarter-final replay against

Manchester United on Monday and that fixture surely played its part

in Chelsea making seven changes for the game at St Mary’s.

Asked if he had been forced into resting the likes of Eden

Hazard, Benitez said: “You say it, we were forced to do it and we

did it.”

The travelling Chelsea supporters were again left frustrated by

the manager’s substitutions as Demba Ba was left on the bench

despite the team trailing.

Asked if he now considers dissenting voices a normal part of

life at the club, Benitez said: “I concentrate on the game. That is

it.”