Tony Pulis does not think it is fair to exclusively credit Guus Hiddink for the recent upturn in Chelsea's form. The West Brom boss – who takes his side to Stamford Bridge on 13 January – has insisted Chelsea's interim manager cannot take all of the praise for their improved results.
Hiddink, 69, replaced Premier League-winning manager Jose Mourinho at the west London club in December. But Pulis thinks pundits have been too quick to lavish praise on Hiddink, who has yet to lose a game.
"The fact is Mourinho won the league last season by a country mile. There might have been other reasons that things didn't go so well this year but to put Jose down is completely and utterly out of order," he said, according to Sky Sports.
The West Brom manager said pundits have been guilty of underestimating Mourinho's work at Stamford Bridge and the quality of the Chelsea squad, who cantered to the Premier League title last season.
"What you said was disrespectful to Mourinho and also the players that won the league last year because they played some great football last year, some fantastic football," he said.
"We're in for a tough game. It's Chelsea and they've some wonderful players and we'll have to be on it and at our best. That's the same with every top four or five club. If you go away and play against them, you have to have at least 10 of your players playing to their maximum to get a result."
Despite their woes this season, Chelsea have progressed to the fourth round of the FA Cup and the last 16 stage of the Champions League. In the league, however, Chelsea currently sit in 14th position in the table, just six points above the relegation zone.