By Chelsea correspondent Tony Hughes

Guus Hiddink has claimed that Chelsea’s lowly Premier League place is “frightening” for everyone associated with the club.

The interim Stamford Bridge manager takes over with the Blues 15th in the table with nearly half of the season gone and 11 points adrift of fourth-placed Tottenham.

Chelsea have lost nine of their 17 Premier League matches and were only one point above the relegation zone before Hiddink was appointed manager on Saturday afternoon.

Speaking to the media on Wednesday afternoon for the first time since in his second spell at the helm, Hiddink said: “It’s not easy to fix. Sometimes you relax too much after winning a title.But the situation is they were down one point off the relegation zone. Being in this position is frightening for everyone.

“I shouldn’t be here – it means things are not going well. But anyhow, I’m glad to be back. I am here, that’s the reality of the situation and I’m glad to be here.”

Hiddink, who watched from the stands as Chelsea beat Sunderland 3-1 at Stamford Bridge last Saturday, has revealed that he had a meeting with the underperforming players on Tuesday.

Roman Abramovich visited the Chelsea players at the training ground on Friday

Roman empire: Abramovich addressed the Chelsea squad before Hiddink was appointed

“Yesterday I talked fully to the squad. I told them, ‘things happen in football’ and I want them to look in the mirror, not just two seconds but longer, and see how they can contribute on the way up.

“I told them as professionals to look in the mirror and be ultra-critical.”

Asked if they have stomach for the fight, Hiddink said: “There must be desire to play. If you don’t have it, knock on my door and we’ll talk. Briefly.”