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Benitez: I'll do my best until the last day

Chelsea interim manager Rafael Benitez was today preparing as usual for tomorrow's Premier League clash with West Brom, despite suggestions his spell would come to a premature end following his diatribe against his job title and the club's fans.

Benitez confirmed he would be leaving Chelsea in the summer as part of an impassioned monologue following the holders' 2-0 FA Cup win at Middlesbrough on Wednesday night.

The criticism sparked suggestions his tenure in caretaker charge could end early, but Benitez insists his relationship with Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich and the playing squad is strong.

"My relationship with the owner is really good," Benitez said.

"Every time I talk to Abramovich about football, I enjoy (it). I know that he wants to win. I'm here because he wants to win and I will try to do my best until the last day.

"The relationship is fine. I don't have any problem with anyone. I have conversations with Michael Emenalo, the technical director, every single day. He watches the training sessions, we talk about football and when I meet Roman Abramovich, we talk about football."

Reports of dressing room unrest, including a dispute with captain John Terry, have been played down and Benitez is adamant there are no major concerns.


"My relationship with the staff, the people at Cobham, is really good, fantastic," Benitez added.

"The players are fully behind our ideas, 100pc."

Chelsea insisted it was "business as usual" at their Surrey training base, where Benitez took training yesterday.

Benitez repeated his wish for the fans to support his team, although given his comments, the atmosphere and taunts towards the interim boss could be more toxic than usual tomorrow.

Fourth-placed Chelsea are in a battle to secure Champions League football next term.

The consequences of missing out could be serious for the club which conquered Europe last term and securing Champions League football is the overriding priority.