Frank Lampard reminded his critics of Chelsea's Premier League credentials following their 3-1 defeat by Manchester City on Sunday.
Ilkay Gundogan, Phil Foden and Kevin De Bruyne fired City into a 3-0 lead in just 35 minutes, with Callum Hudson-Odoi bagging a late consolation for the hosts.
But the pressure is now on Lampard, who faced questions over his future in the aftermath of this latest defeat for the struggling Londoners.
Chelsea have now suffered four defeats in their last six league matches – but Lampard believes his team can bounce back.
He told Sky Sports: "We have character – we have 16 games unbeaten.
"A month ago people are asking where is this going to go, when are you signing a new contract and now they're saying the opposite.
"I'll be the first to look at myself today but I know where we're at and I know what it takes to churn out the level that City were at today.
"It's normal that we take knocks but now is a test."
The Blues boss also admitted to feeling the "heat" in the wake of Sunday's 3-1 Premier League loss to Manchester City in west London.
"I was real after we beat Leeds (3-1 on December 5) saying that we're not title contenders, and I'm real now saying it takes time," Lampard said.
"Any build or rebuild takes pain; pain behind the scenes and pain on the pitch occasionally.
"This is a difficult period and I understand the reasons why. Today the first half showed me the reasons why and we have to keep fighting and I'm the first one who has to keep fighting.
"I'll always feel heat: I felt heat when we were on our good run, because I know that round the corner can be a negative.
"Maybe (N'Golo) Kante you can take out, but when you look around the team, there's a lot of youth, a lot of new players that are trying to come in and settle."
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