Fans were infuriated by the 2-0 home defeat by Swansea in the Capital One Cup last Wednesday and a poor performance in tonight's Barclays Premier League clash with Southampton will cause further unrest.
Fernando Torres' poor performance in the semi-final first leg was explained by a stomach bug, with Demba Ba's minor hamstring injury preventing the introduction of the £7million signing from Newcastle until the final 10 minutes.
Both strikers are available against the Saints and Benitez is likely to opt for Ba in a match that Chelsea must win if the opposition to his appointment as interim boss is not to gain further traction.
Benitez was criticised for using Torres and Ba's injuries as excuses for last week's cup setback, but the Spaniard said: "I was surprised the other day when I spoke about Fernando's problems with his stomach (and that) we couldn't play Demba Ba because he had a niggle.
"Afterwards it was said I was making excuses, but I wasn't making excuses.
"I am still being criticised for making the decision to play Fernando Torres instead of Demba Ba, who was a big risk if he got injured.
"If you know Demba Ba could be injured, it is my job as manager to make this decision.
"He scored two against Southampton (in the FA Cup) but couldn't play the next game against Swansea because of a niggle.
"If we can continue winning games, it's not a case of I can't win."
- Sports & Recreation
- Fernando Torres
- Demba Ba
- Barclays Premier League