Mata denies players are causing rift at Chelsea
JUAN Mata insists Chelsea's players are fully behind Rafael Benitez's mini-revolution.
Blues play-maker Mata denied Benitez's status as 'interim' manager until the end of the season had fatally compromised his authority, despite the former Liverpool boss experiencing a nightmarish start to life at Stamford Bridge.
Benitez has not won any of his first three matches in charge, failing to quell a massive supporter revolt against his appointment and sparking speculation his days could already be numbered.
But no unrest has seeped into the playing squad, according to fellow Spaniard Mata, who is desperate to improve on a run of just two wins from 11 games in tonight's Champions League clash with Nordsjaelland.
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"We are trusting him because Rafa wants the best for the team," said Mata.
"If we want to win the Club World Cup, or the Premier League or the other competitions, we have to do better.
"Rafa is a very experienced manager and he's trying to help us. We're trying to help him."
Mata also insisted Chelsea's players had not been cowed by the jeers and abuse that have dogged Benitez's short reign.
"I'm not deaf, so we were aware," he said of the fan backlash.
"The supporters are free to do whatever they want. My job, our job, is to play well and to win. That's all I care about."
The 24-year-old added: "I always try to be focused on what I'm doing, nothing else."
Mata also declared there was no point Chelsea's players bemoaning owner Roman Abramovich's hiring-and-firing policy, which sees the Spain midfielder serving under his third manager in nine months.
"The players have to be professional and work no matter who the manager is of the team," he said.
"We have an owner. We have people who are working, trying to do their best for this club and, as a player, I just have to work with the manager we have now. Now it's Rafa."
Meanwhile, Chelsea have agreed terms to sign Fluminense full-back Wallace.
The Blues have long been linked with the £5m-rated 18-year-old.