Former Reading midfielder, Steve Sidwell, has claimed at least three senior Chelsea players cried when Jose Mourinho was sacked in 2007.
According to Sidwell, several members of the squad were “crying on the floor” when they heard the news.
Mourinho won the Blues’ first league title in 50 years during his first spell at Stamford Bridge, but he left after a breakdown in his relationship with club owner, Roman Abramovich.
Sidwell was signed by Mourinho just months before his departure.
“I never felt that tension or thought he was in trouble,” he told the Athletic.
“There were a few games before, you could see things in the press and it really bubbled up. But you didn’t feel it on the inside.
“The players were all united, no one was turning against him, he hadn’t lost the dressing room.
“The day he went, I was driving my wife to the airport and the news came on the radio. I just thought, “Sh*t, he’s gone. What’s going to happen?”
“We were then all called into a meeting at Cobham.
“It was awkward when Jose came to say his goodbyes. You could have heard a pin drop. It felt like someone had died.
“When you see strong characters like Didier Drogba, Frank Lampard and John Terry either crying on the floor or certainly welling up… I got upset as well. It was really weird.
“I called him later in the day to thank him for bringing me to Chelsea and to express regret that we didn’t work together for longer.”