Chelsea finally won a match in the Premier League, beating Sunderland 3-1 on Saturday. In a rather interesting turn of events, most players actually played well, which is either highly annoying or entirely expected, depending on just how you view Mourinho's time and influence at Chelsea this season.
For Thibaut Courtois, who had both good and bad moments in the game -- an individual performance that summed up Chelsea's inconsistency this season -- the win was proof that there is quality in the team. The players just have to take some responsibility, too. He's hardly the first player to express opinions along these lines, but sacking the manager is just one those normal every day things in modern football.
"Obviously we don't play to lose but we are responsible as well, we have top players so we shouldn't be 15th in the league. We always wanted to play well but sometimes things turn out differently and obviously the board took a decision [to sack José Mourinho]."
"The first half [against Sunderland] was very good for us, we played really well. It was a good performance and we needed that. Obviously when a manager goes it's a difficult situation."
"We know as a group we have to do better but we've started well and hopefully we can win the next game. For all of us, there are times when we haven't been at our best but everybody was at a good level against Sunderland. You can see the quality is there."
"Everybody is sad about what happened because we haven't played well and won games, so we have to react and do better. Saturday's game was a bit better and obviously we won as well."
As far as the new boss Guus Hiddink goes, Courtois says the players are looking forward to working with him as they seek to start a winning streak. Next up will be 7th place (7th!) Watford, who just hammered Liverpool 3-0.
"He was here before, he did very well and I think he's a very good manager. Hopefully together we can climb back up the table and we're looking forward to starting working with him."
"We know we have to react, we've started well and have to move forward. Whatever has happened stays in the past and now we want to work hard with the new manager to get a good result against Watford."
"We saw last year that we have a lot of quality, we were champions because of that. I don't think a lot has changed since then. We, as a club and players, are used to being at the top of the table, so hopefully step by step we can climb back up and see where we finish at the end of the season."
-Thibaut Courtois; Source: Chelsea FC
Onwards and upwards.