Rafa Benitez in dressing room tirade with Chelsea players

Rafa Benitez launched a furious attack on his Chelsea players, claiming they have no leaders, no confidence and no character.

The Blues boss turned on his side after Saturday’s 3-1 defeat at West Ham — and is now ready to rush back the injured John Terry and Frank Lampard.

Benitez, who was again booed by Blues fans, said: “Normally when you lose, you are not happy — but I was angry. We did not manage their physical game, the long balls, the second balls, the corners.

“We gave them too many options to play their game and we could not be comfortable in possession.

“That is when you have to show character and quality — and we did NOT do that. “Character and leadership is always necessary in a team.

“Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea team had a lot of character but it is a different time now.”

The European champions face two vital games this week — against Danish minnows Nordsjaelland in the Champions League and then struggling Sunderland in the Premier League on Saturday.

They must beat the Danes — and hope Juventus lose — to make the last 16 of the Champions League.

Both knee injury victim Terry and Lamps, who has a calf problem, could return to face the Black Cats, with Benitez admitting he is desperate for their leadership qualities.

He said: “Terry will train part of the session on Monday so, hopefully, will be close, although with the knee you never know. Frank will train on Monday as well. Sunderland? We will see.

“I will talk with them and then the doctor afterwards. “Normally I wouldn’t play them if it was not necessary but a lot of players can play with problems. It depends on the risk.

“But character and leadership are necessary in a team.”

Rafa admitted that confidence is low throughout the team. He said: “We have young players in their first year in the Premier League.

“They have talent and quality but you still have to show that on the pitch. “If you cannot cope with the physical demands of the game, you cannot show your quality so we have to give them confidence.

“I’ve not had too much time in training every day but we will try to adjust things.

“They are experienced players, they’ve won the Champions League and a lot of trophies but they have to show that character. “And they need confidence to do that.

“Some players might show character but if one or two are not at that level, the whole team suffers. “That is what happened in the second half at West Ham.”