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The whole of Premier League and football world were shocked when Chelsea moved from champions of England in 2014 to fight a relegation battle the following season.

Jose Mourinho was eventually sacked while Chelsea were still languishing in 16th position and this led to the appointment of Guus Hiddink who guided Chelsea to 10th position.

Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has urged the rest of the team to become leaders now that the likes of John Terry and Branislav Ivanovic have left the club.

He said: “We lost somebody important last year with Ivanovic and this summer with John Terry.

“So everybody has to step up. Especially the players with the most experience.

“We have a team with a lot of guys that have won a lot, like Cesc Fabregas, Pedro, David Luiz, even Gary [Cahill], who has won a lot already. He is captain.”

Courtois is part of the Chelsea senior players’ committee with Gary Cahill the captain and vice-captain Cesar Azpilicueta.

He added: “Obviously Gary and Azpi are the two captains now. I think some players look to me now. I am part of the players’ committee as well. So for some things they will look to me.

“For some things they will look to the captain. But obviously, me, I have to show my responsibilities on the pitch and off the pitch. I think everybody will put their piece in and hope that as a team we have a great year again.”

The last two Premier League champions didn’t do well enough to defend their crown and Courtois doesn’t want a repeat of that.

About the Author

Chelsea is more than just a football club to me; it's a passion I share, and my affinity with the Chelsea badge is one that will last forever. As far as watching my favourite team is concerned, I'd rather miss a meal than miss a Chelsea game.