Gary Cahill was in no mood for excuses after Friday night’s defeat at the hands of Atletico Madrid in Monaco.

The defender could only watch as Falcao helped himself to a hat-trick at the Stade Louis II, firing a late consolation after Miranda had put the Spaniards four goals ahead, in one of the poorest Chelsea performances in recent memory.

‘We played below par. We fell to pieces,’ Cahill admitted. ‘We started the game sloppy and that went right through the game. If we’re honest with ourselves everyone was below par today and it was embarrassing at times.

‘We approach every game in the same way. We’ve started the season really well but there we were nowhere near the standards we set ourselves. It was a massive game and we let ourselves down and passed up a great opportunity. There are no excuses.’

There is now a fortnight without a game as international football takes centre stage and we reflect on a miserable night. Queens Park Rangers will be our next opponents at Loftus Road on September 15, and Roberto Di Matteo will be demanding improvements from his squad.

‘Obviously we will look to bounce back in the league as that was unacceptable. We hope it’s a freak display,’ Cahill said.

‘I don’t think that will have any effect on other games and hopefully it will be the low point of our season.’

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