Hiddink in at Chelsea

Kalou: Players must get behind Hiddink

February 12, 2009

Chelsea forward Salomon Kalou insists the club's under-performing players must help to ease the workload on new boss Guus Hiddink.

The Stamford Bridge club have turned to the 62-year-old Dutchman, who will also continue as Russia coach, following the sacking of Luiz Felipe Scolari.

Hiddink will combine both roles until the end of the season, something he has done in the past with Australia and PSV Eindhoven.

The new man faces a massive job in turning the Blues' season around, particularly given his international responsibilities, and Kalou believes it is about time his team-mates began to pull their weight themselves.

"He has proved a lot with each club and national team," Kalou said.

"Chelsea think he is the right man and as a player, I am looking forward to working under him and I will do my best for the team and for him.

"We know he can do it because he did it before, and as a player you have to make the job easy for him."

Hiddink is in Turkey with the Russia national side and is likely to fly to England on Thursday, before linking up with his new charges for the first time tomorrow.

That may come too soon for the experienced Dutch coach to take his place in the dug-out for the Blues' FA Cup fifth-round clash at Watford on Saturday, in which case Ray Wilkins would take charge.

Hiddink would nevertheless be expected to take his place in the stands for that match, before starting work with the players in preparation for the February 21 meeting with Aston Villa.

Kalou insists there is no reason why the under-fire Blues cannot go on to find success this season in the FA Cup, Premier League or Champions League.

"I still believe that we can do that and we have the players and side to do it," he said.

"We have to get back to positive thinking and try to win games. If you win the confidence comes back and we have to do it as a team.

"We have a new opportunity to do that now. It starts on Saturday and we have to win."

Scolari departed amid rumours he had lost the support of several players, but Kalou claimed he always retained his full support.

"It was a big surprise, no-one was expecting it," he said of the Brazilian's sacking.

"I can't speak for everybody but from my point of view I enjoyed working under Scolari and I learned a lot.

"It's football and sometimes these decisions are made, but I hope Mr Scolari has a good opportunity to work at another big club. I wish him all the best."