Chelsea captain John Terry insists he is totally behind manager Andre Villas-Boas and has denied reports of dressing room unrest at Stamford Bridge.
Villas-Boas, 34, arrived in west London this summer with a reputation as the best young manager in the world but he has already written off his team’s title chances after an erratic first half of the season left the Blues eight points off the top of the table having played at least one more game than each of their rivals.
There have been reports that the senior players at Chelsea have become unhappy with the manager’s tactics, and both Nicolas Anelka and Alex demanded transfers.
Rumours of acrimony between Terry and Villas-Boas were fuelled on Monday when the Blues skipper appeared reluctant to celebrate with Villas-Boas and the rest of the team following Ramires’ opener at Molineux, where they beat Wolves 2-1 to move into fourth position.
Terry denies he snubbed the chance to join in the show of unity, however, and insists he has no problem with his manager.
"I want to make it clear I’m 100% behind the manager," Terry told the London Evening Standard on Tuesday. "There are no problems behind the scenes
"The manager has made it clear the players who want to stay here will be here and the ones who don’t can move on. I have seen on the news today that people are saying I didn’t celebrate with the manager for the first goal against Wolves but I did.
"I ran over there and I was worried that Wolves were about to restart and take the kick-off and catch us on the break while we were celebrating. I had a quick celebration with him then after the game as well."
Terry thinks rumours of dressing room unrest have come as a result of the poor run of form which has seen Chelsea win just once in their last five Barclays Premier League games.
"From a results point of view we have been giving people an opportunity to write stuff. People tend to look at it a lot deeper than it is," he added.
"At the same time we need to be winning a lot more which I’m confident we will do. First and foremost, the club is a lot bigger than any of us and will come before any of us from now into the future.
"He has come in and changed a lot of things at the football club, not only on the football pitch but on the training ground as well.
"The one thing when he spoke to the players about Nico and Alex is that they had spoken to other clubs and going forward he said that he doesn’t want players involved in the first team who are out there speaking to other clubs because they weren’t thinking of Chelsea first and foremost.
"Roman [Abramovich] is fully behind him, the club as well, and he is making these changes, not for the short term but for the long term as well. He is going to be the man in charge and we all have to respect his decisions. He has been very up front with all of us so we can’t argue with what he’s done."