'The only culprits are us' – Koulibaly puts blame on players for Chelsea slump

Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

Kalidou Koulibaly implored Chelsea players "to look each other in the eye" with the Blues players the only "culprits" for the increasing pressure on Graham Potter.

Head coach Potter became the first Blues manager since Jose Mourinho in 2015 to lose three consecutive Premier League matches following a 1-0 defeat at Newcastle United.

The tepid nature of the Chelsea showing offered more reason for concern after the Blues managed just seven touches in the opposition box, their lowest since January against Manchester City.

With Potter's side eight points adrift of the Premier League's top four, albeit with a game in hand over fourth-placed Tottenham, Koulibaly urged his team-mates to take responsibility for their recent form.

"It hurts, we came here to take three points,'' the Senegal international told Canal Plus.

''We knew that they were in a good moment, that they are putting on the intensity and that especially at home they have their audience behind them.

"Today, Chelsea are not in their place and the only culprits are us. So we must look each other in the eye and continue to work to put Chelsea in their place.''

The World Cup break could come at a good time for Chelsea as the Premier League pauses, with the Blues not in action again until a home clash with Bournemouth on December 27.

Koulibaly will head to the Middle East with Senegal, who are in Group A alongside hosts Qatar, Ecuador and the Netherlands, though he hopes Chelsea can atone for their mistakes after the break.

He added: ''The break comes at a good time for us, we need to recharge the batteries, think about something else and come back after the World Cup with a different mentality."