Chelsea’s problems this season stem from the fact they are missing John Terry, according to Blues legend Dennis Wise.
Wise, a hugely popular figure among Chelsea fans, believes Gary Cahill has been unable to fill the void since Terry left the club last year.
And the former England midfielder has also criticised David Luiz for his performance in this week’s 4-1 hammering at Watford.
Speaking on Sky Sports News, Wise said: “He (Terry) was the leader of that group and I don’t think at the moment they have someone like that that has replaced him and is in there who can sort these problems out.
“You always have to have certain personnel within that group who can dig people out. That has to come within the players – not always the manager.
“I don’t think they’ve got enough of that within the side. John was the last one who really would nail people and tell them as it is.
“I’d look at Cahill and I’d like to think he would be a leader. But at the moment, with his performances, he’s been struggling as well.
“Sometimes, when your performances (are poor), you start to concentrate on yourself.
“I don’t think they’ve actually got someone who can start digging people out and start putting it together.”
Luiz was recalled to the side for the defeat at Vicarage Road, where Chelsea capitulated late on and always looked vulnerable at the back.
“They were all over the place and David Luiz decided to start going everywhere,” said Wise.
“It was down to Cesar Azpilicueta and Gary Cahill to say: ‘Oi, pack it in. Come alongside us.’ Those are the two you’d look at.
“I get the feeling they’re very nice and quiet people. You sometimes need personnel in the middle who are not always liked, unfortunately, and have to say what needs to be said.
“I did it. John did it for many years. You do have arguments inside that dressing room and you do say what needs to be said.
“He (Luiz) went off on one for some reason and he caused the whole back three problems at times.
“That’s where you need someone to really have a go and pull them inside.”