It's easy to overreact. Chelsea have just one win in seven and what was once a decently promising end of season with a possible FA Cup run and Top 6 challenge has devolved into a series of listless, useless, gutless performances. We haven't won a game at Stamford Bridge in two months.
The size of the rebuilding job facing Chelsea and incoming manager Antonio Conte has never looked bigger. Seeing Abramovich clutching his phone and staring vacantly into space in the waning minutes of today's embarrassment at home against Manchester City, it's easy to envision him burning it all down to start again.
That of course is not a realistic option or sentiment. The magnitude of the task ahead may be great, but we must not panic.
"Reasonable work, but they must not panic. They must analyse the situation and take measurement."
A measured response, then, though surely a few major changes, a couple key signings at least are required at this point. Just the promise of a new season and new management doesn't quite seem enough to snap this bunch back to life. The gap exposed between Chelsea and not even close to title-winning Manchester City today might even be visible from space.
"It was a difficult game against a well-organised and skillful team It's not for nothing that they are at the top of Europe now. We sometimes had dominance in the game, but they were sharp and skilful on the counter-attack. We got caught. We were naive how we defended."
"We always want to win, but they have a class team and they are eager to go into at least fourth position in the Champions League."
-Guus Hiddink; source: Get West London
Hiddink talked about professional pride ahead of this match, but there was very little of that in evidence today. Five more games to go.