And the blame game begins.

You probably won’t be surprised to learn that the Mariah Carey camp believes her botched New Year’s Eve performance was blown up (sabotaged) just so it would get higher ratings.

According to TMZ, sources close to Carey say they made repeated complaints to execs at Dick Clark Productions that her earpieces (“Inner ears”) weren’t working.

The report says Mariah did an interview with Ryan Seacrest an hour before she took the stage in Times Square and she was having trouble.

“It’s hard for me to hear you,” she was heard telling Seacrest.

Mariah and her team went to the production trailer after the interview and once again told Dick Clark execs her inner ears weren’t working. The sources say they were told her inner ears would be on a different frequency when she hit the stage and there would be no problem.

Fast forward to 6 minutes before her performance. Mariah was in the holding tent for last minute makeup, and she was alarmed, telling the production team she could barely hear anything. Mariah sources say they were assured the tent muffled the sound, and it would be fine on stage.

At that point someone said her mic pack wasn’t working because the battery was dead, so they changed packs.

Mariah was suspicious and got on stage 4 minutes early to test things out, and she couldn’t hear anything in her inner ear. She and her team say they complained repeatedly, but nothing was done.

To make matters worse and even more suspicious, Mariah’s people say when she got on stage the prompter wasn’t working. The prompter has the lyrics when they appear in the song as well as stage cues.

Mariah ripped the inner earpiece out — out of frustration — and thought she had a fighting chance just listening to the music, but the crowd was so loud in Times Square she could hear nothing.

Short story — Mariah’s team believe there are too many coincidences and too many warnings … they say it was sabotage “so they could get Mariah drama.” We know Mariah’s people fired off an email to an Exec at Dick Clark Productions, saying, “This is sabotage.”

After reading all the foregoing, it’s plausible that Mariah’s team is on to something. However, in its response to the story and Mariah’s claims, Dick Clark Production sources tell TMZ … Mariah’s “sabotage” claim is “silly. ” They say SHE’s the one who decided not to do a sound check, and had a stand-in do it instead. They also point out that there were 8 monitors on stage amplifying sound, so even without an inner ear, Mariah should have been able to hear just fine.

They also add that Mariah changed her story … initially saying the track was wrong. But Dick Clark sources insist her camp provided the track list.

Something tells us that going forward, it may be a long time – if ever – before Mariah Carey and Dick Clark Productions work together again.

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