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Hiddink Better Than Mourinho – Mikel

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Chelsea midfielder John Mikel Obi has attributed the recent improvement within the team to the arrival of new manager, Guus Hiddink.

Hiddink was appointed as interim manager at Stamford Bridge in December after the dismissal of Jose Mourinho.

Mikel made just nine appearances for Chelsea this season prior to Mourinho’s departure but has emerged as a key figure under Hiddink, starting five of the Dutchman’s six Premier League matches in charge.

Speaking to BBC’s Match of the Day, the 28-year old said: “Yes, the mood is better, I think that’s what [Hiddink] has brought into the football club.

“He’s so calm and so relaxed, just the way he communicates with the players, and maybe that’s what the players felt they didn’t get from the previous manager [Mourinho].

“Sometimes with players, not just because they’re not playing, you need to communicate with them, speak to them, and don’t just ignore them because players like to be communicated to.”

Chelsea extended their unbeaten run under the Dutchman to eight matches on Sunday with a 5-1 rout of MK Dons in the FA Cup fourth round.

The Blues will host rivals, Manchester City in the fifth round of the FA Cup.