By Chelsea correspondent

John Terry has admitted that it had been a “tough few days” at Chelsea and that the players had let down sacked manager Jose Mourinho.

The Portugese was dismissed on Thursday in the wake of a catastrophic run of results that had left the club marooned one point above the relegation zone.

Chelsea take on Sunderland at Stamford Bridge on Saturday aiming to climb from their lowly position of 16th in the Premier League table.

Skipper Terry became the first Chelsea player to speak to the media since the sacking of the most successful and popular manager in the club’s history.

“It’s been a tough few days, obviously losing your manager,” Terry told Sky Sports on Saturday afternoon. “He loses his job but us players are responsible for that. Our performances and our position in the league isn’t good enough. We stand accountable for that and it’s down to us to start winning football matches.’

There has been an outpouring of anger from Chelsea supporters at losing a manager who had steered the club to three Premier League titles, the last of which was just seven months ago.

Asked if the fans would be behind the underperforming players against Sunderland, Terry replied: “I certainly hope so. It’s been difficult for them, so I understand the frustration – how much they love the manger. If we can pick up three points today hopefully that can get them back on our side.

Testing times: Terry admits it has been a tough time since Mourinho was sacked

Testing times: Terry admits it has been a tough time since Mourinho was sacked

“It’s difficult, of course, but we have a job at the same time so I think the manager (Mourinho) would want that today. The team and Steve Holland in charge today want to go and pick up three points. Enough talking from the players, I said that a few weeks ago.

“It’s us that’s responsible for our position, no-one is getting away from that fact. We’ll stand accountable and stand up and show what a great group of players we are and now start climbing the league table.”