Chelsea manager Antonio Conte says he has earned the right to turn around the club's patchy run of form in the Premier League after last season's "miracle" title triumph.
A 3-0 away defeat at Roma in the Champions League on 31 October compounded Chelsea's misery, but Conte said he had explained to club owner Roman Abramovich that it would take time for the squad to gel after a summer of transfer upheaval.
"If we think I click my fingers and we are ready to fight, it's not simple. Last season happened. A miracle," the Italian was quoted as saying by Sky Sports.
"It was a miracle because we had the same players that the season before finished 10th.
"We must be ready to do something special," Conte added. "But we must be realistic and to understand that we are building. We are creating a foundation.
"It's important to have the patience and then to have the time to do this.
"I understand that it's not for all to have patience – I have not a lot of patience, honestly. But patience is a big quality."
Reports have suggested that Conte's relationship with the Chelsea board has soured amid dissatisfaction at the level of support he has received from the Blues hierarchy.
The Times reported last month that the 48-year-old had "seriously considered" leaving his job in the summer following disputes with Chelsea officials over transfers and the promotion of academy players.
The former Italy boss eventually signed an improved two-year contract at Stamford Bridge in July, but the deal did not extend the former Italy manager's commitment to the club.
"Honestly, I think I earned my time here with the win of last season," Conte said. "I don't like to ask for time, I like to tell the truth.
"The situation is very clear – my task is to work and to put all of myself for this club. Then, if it's enough? OK. If it's not enough? OK. The same. I will continue to live."