CAHILL: PUTTING THINGS RIGHT
Gary Cahill joined Jose Mourinho for this afternoon's media conference ahead of the game against Schalke tomorrow night. The defender spoke of the squad's determination to react positively to Saturday's defeat at Newcastle, in much the same manner as they did after consecutive losses to Everton and Basel in September.
The 27-year-old was an unused substitute at St James' Park but started the three games prior to that, including the 3-0 victory in Gelsenkirchen against tomorrow night's opponents. He is well-placed, therefore, to offer his thoughts on the threat posed by Schalke, a side that have lost just once in their past 12 European away games.
'I think we're expecting a similar game to the one in Germany,' Cahill said. 'We were very organised out there, and we limited them to long-distance efforts. We caught them on the counter attack a few times but nevertheless they did have a lot of possession and they have some great players.
'The onus will be on us tomorrow to be on the front foot because we are playing at home. If we can go out there with the same attitude as we had in the away game then I'm sure we will be okay.'
A defeat in our first Champions League game of the campaign, at home to Basel, left us with work to do, but two consecutive victories on the road see us top Group E by virtue of our better head-to-head record with Schalke. Cahill sees a great opportunity to strengthen that spot tomorrow night.
'We had a disappointing start in the first game (against Basel), and we don't want to feel the same feeling again. It made it more difficult for us because we had to go and get wins away from home,' Cahill noted. 'We did that thankfully and we've put ourselves in a great position in the group now and we want to keep that going forward.
'I don't know if maybe 11 or 12 points might be enough (to qualify from the group), but if we get a positive result tomorrow we will certainly be one step to closer to that.'
The central defender finished by stressing how desperate the players and management staff are to put Saturday's setback - our first in six weeks - behind them as we go in search of another winning run.
'You're going to be angry and disappointed when you lose games. The manager is no different to the players and we all feel the same way because we're all in it together,' Cahill said.
'Unfortunately we had a poor result but before that we had three great results against three massive teams. The best thing as players is to get straight back out there and put things right. We have the opportunity to show a positive reaction tomorrow and I'm sure we'll do it.'