Premier League

Ivanovic - Meeting helped us

Blues defender believes frank exchanges will reap rewards

Branislav Ivanovic: Boosted confidence following Sunday's team meeting

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Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic admits their highly-publicised team meeting on Sunday has had a positive impact on the players.

Blues manager Andre Villas-Boas called a number of players into Stamford Bridge on their day off following their humiliating defeat at the hands of Everton which saw them fall to fifth in the Premier League.

Reports emerged that various players challenged Villas-Boas during the meeting and the manager revealed on Thursday that not all of the squad are backing him with his Chelsea 'project'.

However, Ivanovic believes that the frank discussions will provide a catalyst to turn the season around and emulate the success of 2010 when they won the double.

"We had a couple of very good things come out of last weekend," he told the club's official website. "We sorted out a lot of problems and we have worked very hard in training as well.

Confidence

"We are doing our best. It is a very hard period for us but we have to believe, we have to have trust in each other on the pitch and believe that better things will happen for us.

"It is very important to have communication between the manager and the players. For the players, it gives us confidence and we know what we're doing right and wrong. The meetings can help.

"That is why it is good that we have had a good rest and worked hard in training as well. We are ready for Birmingham and the rest of the season."

Chelsea are back in action on Saturday with a lunchtime kick-off against Championship title contenders Birmingham City with a place in the FA Cup quarter-final at stake and Ivanovic acknowledges the importance of the clash.

"We play at home and we have to win the game," he added.

"I think this is one of the most important moments for us where we can change the rest of the season."

What will be the outcome in the match Chelsea vs Birmingham?

  • Chelsea
  • Draw
  • Birmingham