Chelsea 3-5 Arsenal – Jim is No Longer Around to Fix It

A brief look at a quiet week

Amidst the fallout of the Battle of Loftus Road, credit must go to those who turned up at Stamford Bridge on Thursday to vote on the club’s proposal to purchase the freehold of the ground with a view to, well, possibly moving but not too far away until after 2020, when the world outside West London may well be their lobster.

Our intrepid band of #saynocpo voters negotiated their way through the club’s own PR onslaught, from cringeworthy Buck and Gourlay interviews to sickly “It’s what Matthew (Harding) would have wanted” articles, caught the last / early train back from Liverpool, avoided the inevitable pitchfork and torch wielding “Burn the racist!” chanting angry mob to arrive at the grand hall and put an ‘X’ firmly in Roman’s box.

Part of me suspects a shrewder operator like Kenyon might have wrapped this particular matter up by now, but Roman’s band of Keystone Cops didn’t cover themselves in glory in their attempts to persuade the folk who threw down £100 notes in the club’s hour of need to say ‘yes’. It would seem that the general consensus is that most will agree if the club are a little more forthcoming about their plans, but expect this one to run on for a little while yet.

Oh yes, and that cautionary tale in not selling your soul for a nice shiny new ground was due at the Bridge at some relatively ungodly hour on Saturday. Despite TfL’s best efforts, I made it to the ground with time for a pint of weak and gassy Singha to spare. Bruce and Ron certainly couldn’t run a piss-up in that particular brewery. Oliver Reed would have struggled, in fact.

The game

I am about as likely to commit any kind of detailed memory of this afternoon’s fiasco to a hard drive as I am to repeatedly slam my scrotum in a car door. It wasn’t quite Kanu, Winterburn or Silvinho but the general misery is magnified to the power of loads by the nagging, painful knowledge that this Arsenal outfit doesn’t have a fraction of the balls, gumption or backs-to-the-wall-and-fuck-you fight as the sides that used to regularly arrive at the Bridge and find new and amusing ways of humiliating us before Mourinho pitched up and made Wenger his bitch. To put things in some kind of Graham Taylor-ese, to those days I do not wish to return.

The good

  • We scored three goals.
  • We finished the game with eleven men on the pitch (not so as you’d notice, mind).
  • Andre Marriner couldn’t be accused of not letting the game flow.
  • Entertaining for the neutral, I suppose.
  • There really is never a dull moment supporting this team.

The bad

  • The defence. Stunk like a tramp’s arse and was about as unpleasant to look at. See elsewhere for further comment.
  • Watching us trying to retain possession in the second half was like watching a drunk trying to grapple with a bar of soap.
  • When the opposition keeper openly admits he was lucky to stay on the pitch, you have to ask where the referee left his cards. Perhaps Chris Foy needed another set to replace his worn out pair?
  • We conceded five at home in the league for the first time since 1989 (Liverpool, in case you were wondering).
  • We have already conceded more goals in the league than we did in the whole of the 2004-5 season.
  • Jim is no longer around to fix it.

An additional statistic for the sheer hell of it

Robin van Persie has scored twenty-eight goals in his last twenty-seven Premier League games. He cost less than three million pounds. Fernando Torres has scored – oh, forget it.

Player ratings in the style of Michael Fish and Roger Melly

A few early bright spells, with the odd dark cloud appearing, but there really is no storm on the way. Good evening, and… bollocks.

Man of the Match

Probably that van Persie bloke. Mata if we’re picking someone in blue.

A message to you, Andre

Look, we like you. We really want you to stay and succeed for many reasons, mainly for the fact that if you don’t we may as well give up and let Roman pick the team. We’re very happy that you harbour a philosophy of attacking football. But frankly, your defensive philosophy is utter cuntery personified and is going to cost you very dearly if you don’t wise up pretty quickly. Even at this early stage, the competition are generally knocking in goals for fun whilst we’re conceding them at a rate of knots and have an erratic strike force that is either suspended or looking less likely to score than a man wandering into a singles night with a “Syphilitic and Loving It” T-shirt on.

Final thoughts

A game you could possibly distil into the easy soundbite that one side had a finisher and the other didn’t, if you couldn’t find any more words to describe the mish-mash of errors, pratfalls, poor passing, shoddy officiating, amateur finishing and general bleeeurgh nature of the game. Neither side could defend for toffee and are unlikely to be troubling the silverware end of the season on the basis of today’s outing.

The turf under AVB’s feet at Stamford Bridge may be a little safer today, but as any former Chelsea manager will tell him, pools of highly dangerous quicksand litter the surrounding area and far more experienced men with nice, shiny trophies under their belts have fallen foul of them. Tread carefully, Andre, tread carefully.

The press reports

The Sunday Telegraph, Duncan White: “Villas-Boas is trying to change the football philosophy of his team – and on this evidence it is clearly going to come at a cost. After the 3-1 defeat to Manchester United at Old Trafford, many critics described the Portuguese as naïve. That is a little patronising but he is certainly prepared to take risks as he tries to fast-track this team towards a stylish, high-tempo, front-foot approach. And those risks did not pay off.”

The Observer, Amy Lawrence : “For a man whose obsession with attacking football knows no bounds, it was a strange sight to see Arsène Wenger urging his players to put the brakes on when a red mass swarmed towards Petr Cech’s goal. The Arsenal manager did his best Basil Fawlty impression as his team’s instinctive way of protecting a 4-3 lead was to bomb forward in a buccaneering search for more.”

The Independent on Sunday, Rory Smith: “Wojciech Szczesny should have been dismissed – “I don’t know why I stayed on the pitch,” he tweeted – for felling Cole, and even Mata’s Exocet could not save the hosts. Terry slipped, Arsenal soared. First Van Persie beat Cech with skill and, in injury time, power. With his team-mates, the 28-year-old danced with his exultant fans, the scars of Old Trafford beginning to fade. Perhaps that will provide Terry with some solace. Perhaps not.”

The Official Chelsea FC Website: “When John Terry restored Chelsea’s lead just before half-time, Frank Lampard having opened the scoring early on, the second half looked full of promise, but a sloppy display after the interval resulted in the first home defeat under Andre Villas-Boas. Arsenal went into the lead with two goals shortly after the restart but Juan Mata then made it all to play for by scoring the goal of the game with 10 minutes remaining. However Robin van Persie registered a hat-trick with the final two goals, the first following Chelsea mistakes. It was great entertainment for any neutral as both teams played an open match, but Chelsea will not wish to be so vulnerable at the back again this season.”

The goals

14′ Lampard 1-0; 36′ van Persie 1-1; 45′ Terry 2-1; 49′ Andre Santos 2-2; 55′ Walcott 2-3; 80′ Mata 3-3; 85′ van Persie 3-4; 90′ van Persie 3-5

There are 96 comments

Add yours
  1. Cunningplan

    Very accurate and witty report JD, the ideal medicine after todays trauma. And to make matters worse all the other teams we would have wanted to lose today, bloody won.

    “So howz about that then”, in the immortal words of Jim’ll jinx it.

  2. Anonymous

    Hear hear.

    I’m not sure how much we should read into this game beyond what we knew already: both teams have bags of talent, neither will be troubling the engravers much this season. Either team could have won, and a 7-7 draw wouldn’t have looked too outlandish either.

    I’m seeing a lot of “Cesc who?” nonsense rattling around the interthingy from Arseistas. Honestly. Fair enough to get a bit excited about the result, but that’s the most lightweight Arsenal team I’ve seen pitch up at the Bridge for a good long while.

    As for us … Well, at least it’s not the one-paced turgidity we saw in the first two home games. The mood on the stairwells of the East Upper after the game was interesting. Usually after our thankfully rare home defeats I see people purple-faced and throb-veined with frustration, humiliation and rage (usually shouting to no one in particular about Mikel being a f***ing useless c**t) but today there general vibe was head-shaking incredulousness of the “you’ve got to be joking” variety.

    Only Studge would go under the category of desperately poor. Nando lumbered around optimistically without much effect as usual but wasn’t quite as hopeless as his linemate. Big Pete might have done better, perhaps, but without replays I can’t say one way or the other. Otherwise everyone looked pretty decent to me: but with Bosingwa and Cashley half way up the pitch for most of the game we were easily overloaded at the back — nobody has to be playing badly to give up a goal in that situation.

    JT will be the story of course. I had a feeling he was tempting fate by giving the Arse lot the stare after he scored.

    It was nicer when no one was talking about us. You couldn’t help be reminded of those days when dear old Frank Sinclair came out for the half time promenade. (Props to the away fans for their “He was there when you were shit” chant.)

  3. Talktoace

    their goalie should obviously have been sent off with 40 minutes left and the sciore at 2-2 . . . . I’m not sure how but I fear we would still have worked hard to lose this match even with a decent ref!

  4. Ryan

    Excellent comments. Villas-Boas needs to be extremely careful. I would never assume to be telling such an obviously intelligent and talented manager how to do his job, but I’m going to anyway. (n.b I make these comments in the full knowledge that he obviously knows considerably more about the subject than me and most others- that’s why he is doing the job and not somebody else). Refusing to acknowledge our defensive frailties after today’s game is bad news. You will not win anything, ever defending as we are at the moment. This is not about abandoning philosophies or footballing values. It’s about learning from your mistakes. Changing, learning and improving. So far it hasn’t happened but it needs to. No lessons seem to have been learned from the game at Old Trafford. Just saying “We created enough chances to win the game.” cannot excuse shipping a hatful of goals in a big game. Ok we lost 5-3 but if we’d taken all of our chances and Arsenal all of theirs it could’ve been 7-7. So we could’ve got a draw. And we’d only be 8 points behind Man.City. After 10 games. Excellent.
    I really hope Villas-Boas can get things right but it’ll mean his “philosophy” will need to be flexible. And the squad still needs world class improvements. Bosingwa, Mikel, Kalou, Malouda, Essien, Drogba and Ferreira are the ones that spring immediately to mind.

    Up the Chels!

  5. Anonymous

    The defence isn’t going to change any time soon. We won’t be keeping a clean sheet for a long time.

    How we can appear more Keystone cops than an Arsenal side who originated the saying is anyone’s guess. We’re simply a fucking joke in defence. Why not give Romeu a go? If he can run the show in the CL against Genk and against Everton, play him in the league.

    It’s just not that difficult to see, AVB.

  6. WorkingClassPost

    No excuses, but we looked tired,  at 1-0 and even 2-1 I would’ve taken the draw.

    How many games can you play with 10 before it saps that extra something that’s needed to win at this level? 

    A sure sign of fatigue is those long, straight, over-hit ‘passes’ that we resorted to second half. With most of the team knackered, and the rest rather rusty, it was no surprise that we under-performed, and I’m just hoping this is the last shit show we put on for a while.

    Although it may have worked against us, also thought the ref did OK.

    Like the way AVB has the team playing, but, and without going into details, there are still a few selections/substitutions that I’m unconvinced by.

  7. Harry

    AVB need
    to know assessment of his score card is based on measure of success against 4
    teams. Arsenal, Manu Utd, Liverpool, and Man City. One more loss like the game against
    Arsenal or Man Utd, Avb should go.

    As for
    Chelsea board, after engineering departure of Mourinho, The board has failed to
    justify their actions for Chelsea team deterioration, despite some heavy
    investments. The board is on notice too.

    supporters will not tolerate Mediocrity on the pitch or in the board room.

  8. Anonymous

    Super stuff m’lud. I’m not sure I agree on the defensive philosophy comment though. I think this is what Roman wants. he wants to model us into a Barcelona type of team, and he has hired one of the brightest young coaches to see that through. I thought AVB’s post match interview was great and spot damn on. Either the current players will adapt to his ideas or they won’t in which case they’ll be replaced. But AVB has the sense to not throw the baby out with the bathwater, and therefore experienced players have been kept in the squad but clearly they have been given the message that NONE of them are immediate choices. If the players aren’t happy with that and can’t be arsed to perform when called upon then fuck ’em, they can go. This is why I like Anelka so much. Not even bench worthy today but will we hear a peep from him? I doubt it very much. On that point I think we missed him today, a calm influence up front who may not be scoring goals but knows how to set them up for Torres – a much better option than Malouda in my book. I’d sell Malouda in the summer, along with Drogba and Kalou, all worthy of thanks but not the types to fit into our new Dutch/Spanish open type of football. 

    As for AVB’s comments, he was right but omitted the key point about goal number 4 being a result of a shit pass from the increasingly disinterested and lumbering Malouda and JT’s slip was just unfortunate. We water the pitch and the players don’t stud up? Only themselves to blame for being fucking thick then. The 5th goal came as a result of trying to get ourselves a 4th so whilst not inevitable, when you throw everything into attack as we were then you’ll always be vulnerable at the back aginst a fluid fast team like Arsenal. . As for the other 3…..well Cech could and should have had the Santos goal, a shit piece of goalkeeping from someone who was so imperious the other night. I’d argue the Walcott goal was keystone cop defending and equally sloppy goalkeeping again. The Arsenal 1st goal was a case of 3rd time lucky having already ghosted past us twice before only to find RVP without his normal killer instinct and Gervinho flummoxed by the sudden appearance of an open goal. 

    I heard criticisms of Sturridge, and whilst a bit off his recent best, he was still a handful and chased back superbly at one point to stave off an Arsenal threat in our box. Torres drifted to the wings too much today and we suffered by pushing the ball into the box only for Torres to be MIA. Ramires was a bright spark but tired quickly, hardly surprising the amount of running the boy does. Frank became increasingly frustrated and Mikel was overwhelmed by Arsenal numbers. A shame for someone who has sparkled for me this season. Ashley Cole was caught out of position too many times and Bosingwa had his worst game for us this season which is also a shame because he’s been pretty darn good until now. A liability Luiz maybe but we were crying out for some marauding bonkers football today, after all who’d have noticed a madman amongst the madness on display? And Arsenal would have been worried by him because of his pace and ability to run at players. Mikel off, yes, but Luiz on for me. 

    Mata was superb and his goal deserved better than a JT slip and a Bosingwa give away for goals 4 and 5. Following the twitterverse as I do, there’s a hell of a lot of shit being spoken about AVB and naivety etc. I enjoyed todays defeat more than any of the abject displays in defeats under Ancelotti last season. And the defeatism and pessimism amongst a lot of fans is incredible  – I had the misfortune to have some of the most ill knowledgeable fuckwits ever behind me today, calling AVB a ginger cunt, wondering why Drogba wasn’t playing (yeah they were that real) and wondering why Ray Wilkins hadn’t been seen around SB or Cobham lately (yes they really said that) . As the game went on they were already talking about how we should go for Mourinho again next year. Fuckwittery is a hard art to master, but these blokes had PHD’s in it. 

    My view is much simpler. Last week I was aggrieved at the undoubted injustice we had suffered. This week I take the defeat on the chin because Arsenal were simply better everywhere today. They won every loose ball, they chased us down, they made less errors, they fought the tackles more and they are masters of time wasting when winning. We looked tired, confused and overwhelmed. 

    United lost 6-1 at home last week but they’ll bounce back and indeed have already to some extent. Arsenal lost 8-2 to United and have now won 7 from 8. They bounced back. City have yet to blip, but they will because that bubble will burst soon. We will have to beat Blackburn, who really are shit and then exact some revenge on Liverpool when they visit. 

    • Cunningplan

      To pick up on a couple of your points Tony.

      Anelka didn’t make the bench, because it appears he failed a late fitness test, he was being put through his paces about an hour before kick off, but agree about him not complaining.

      With regard Arsenal first to the tackles, and winning loose balls, and I’m not using this as an excuse but, I think the recent ammount of bookings and red cards held a bit more fear for our lot for obvious reasons, plus the recent exertions from playing with less than eleven.

      I still think we deserved at least a draw, but appreciate your view on things. 🙂

      • Anonymous

        Morning CP – yes it occurred to me the fear factor might play a part when you see how we’ve been treated recently. Certainly for the Walcott goal no-one dared put a foot in and to be honest I can’t blame them. I didn’t know Anelka had failed a fitness test so thanks for that. That’s a shame because although the goals have dried up he has a quality about him that Malouda has lost. It may be desire and an easy confidence because he has decided his future whereas Malouda seems slow, indecisive and maybe even apathetic.  He may NOT be any of those but it appears that way to me and it seems many others. 

        I still think a draw would have flattered us, purely based on the quality of those chances Arsenal spurned in the first half, but hey ho….lets take this on the chin and turn attention to Genk and Blackburn.

  9. Anonymous

    I agree with Grocerjack, I thought Sturridge was better than Torres who seriously played piss poor today. He literally wants to be spoon fed the damn ball and barely made any concerted attempts to break away or out muscle any of the Arsenal defenders for anything.

    The goals themselves, while  95% horrid defending 5% bad luck, spoke volumes of the shit we have become since Mourinho’s or  was it Steve Clarke’s departure. It has worsened every season since and someone seriously has to pick up the slack.

    The first one might have been avoided had Lampard attempted a tackle. The second shows us why Bosingwa  is and always will be a shitty defender. Why was he next to Branners eludes me. The third you could see how scared the entire squad was off the booking and in all fairness to the recent spate of red cards and the fact the Walcott has been a diving little shit.

    But the forth is where, for pretty little ffs, someone please tell me how Kalou gets more hate then at times the shittiest and most sullen bratty player that is Malouda. His backpass, one of the many committed today by our brilliant defenders, was by far the dumbest and poorest decisions a senior player could make. I sincerely would love to see him sold this summer.

    Simple deduction from today’s performance was that we were terrified
    today of getting carded, exceptions being Branners and Mikel. They
    atleast put their foot in when it mattered.

    Lastly Lukaku as a sub seriously, I would have left Sturridge  and taken of our 50 million birdie, and maybe as Grocerjack suggested swapped Mikel with Luiz or Romeu. Mikel while you can’t fault him today is not the type of player Arsenal fear in the midfield.

    Still hats of to Van Persie, oh how I hate him when he does this to us.

  10. Marco

    Didn’t see the match but the Kaiser’s report captures perfectly the mood of disbelief and moral outrage amongst supporters.

    Chelsea FC do not concede 5 goals at Stamford Bridge end of. That’s not the sort of club we are any more and AVB and the players should hang their heads in shame.

    Thanks to LTB and the Grocer for more detail on how the whole sorry shambles unfolded. I get the impression that AVB needs to turn the hairdryer on to certain players and leave them out of his plans unless they show some esprit de corps. Boring fuckwits like ‘Harry’ will be squealing for the manager to go but AVB does need to start learning fast before Wenger, Dalglish and Fergie turn him into their mascot.

  11. Anonymous

    It was frustrating that two players that were showing signs of improvement, namely Torres and Boswinga, decided to revert to last season’s pitiful displays.  Sturridge took a lot of stick and I’ve been heavily critical of him in the past, but I thought there were a lot of positives.  He made lots of space for himself, took on and beat defenders and got in some great positions.  Sure his final ball and shots were poor but at least he was putting his head above the parapet.

    After Mata scored the momentum swung to us.  I haven’t seen the highlights, because I can’t bear to do so post defeat, but from where I was sitting, gate 7 West Lower, I was in perfect line to see that Malouda shot us in the feet, rather than passing to JT’s feet.

    Clearly with two successive defeats there’s plenty of angst amongst fans but we shouldn’t get too despondent.  We should have faith that the CPO will soon take control of team selection and ultimately decide the future of AVB.

    I was a little disappointed at half time to see Frank Sinclair perform the customary walk of honour. I was expecting a parade of CPO shareholders to whom I could offer my applause and undying gratitude. 

  12. Anonymous

    Another real test of the BlueBayou Zen approach to watching football.

    Hostage to fortune moments numbers 1 & 2:

    The morning papers cheerily confirm that Chelsea have a 100% home record while Arsenal have yet to register an away league win this season.

    The match day programme helpfully points out Arsenal have now won 7 of their last 8 games in all competitions after their dodgy start, while comparing our announced team with goalscorers in EPL games v Arsenal at the Bridge I see we have no one in the squad who has ever scored against them [only Drogba, Essien and Alex of current players had if you’re interested].

    The Keystone Cops game that ensued left me bemused, convinced by the standard of non-defending all round that there had been a bodge-up somewhere and an amateur game from the nearest public park had switched venues.

    Or perhaps it was a subtle comment on the CPO vote to remind all fans what watching Chelsea was really like in the 80s/early 90s – half-time appearance of Frank Sinclair deepens this suspicion.

    I recommend you secure a copy of one of Scott Cheshire’s invaluable books of our stats up to 1991, as I suspect we may be breaking quite  a few of those pre-EPL records in the weeks to come.

    As JD’s fine stab at writing anything coherent about events points out, we last conceded 5 at home in 1989. We managed to lose 2-5 in consecutive home games v. Wimbledon and then Liverpool.

    And of course our next home game is against…. Liverpool! I am mildy encouraged that they look so mediocre I suspect they would need us to be reduced to 8 men to produce a score like that. Still if we get Phil The Fusspot or a similar ref that might well be arranged 😉

  13. PeteW

    A few quick points:

    Barcelona do not play like that!

    Why is Alex being treated so badly when the other three CBs are allowed to make mistake after mistake?

    How much did we pay for Torres?

    How much?

    Did he even have a shot?

    In a home game with eight goals?

    When are we allowed to criticise Sturridge’s shit decision making (a la Kalou)?

    Why do our midfield not track back or close down? 

    Why are our CBs so far apart all the time?

    Can we have the old Drogba back?

    Shouldn’t a manager play to his players strengths rather than set them up in a way that seems guaranteed to lose?

    We’ve conceded eight goals in our only two games against decent teams and neither have played well – that worries me and I don’t think we should stick our heads in the sand and pretend it will go away.

    • Cunningplan

      I think you’ll find Pete that I mentioned Sturridge’s poor finishing and decision making when he got into some very good positions, he had a poor game by his recent standards.
      I still maintain the results are freakish, Utd v Arse, Utd v City, I know Utd beat Arse and us, but they also shipped a ridiculous ammount of goals as well. I think we should be judged after the City game, if they do us for anything more than three, then we will have problems.

      I’d be more worried as an Arseanl fan, because without Van Persie they’ll struggle for goals, and I bet City’s forward line are relishing having a go at Arsenal’s defence.

  14. Anonymous

    Barcelona do not play like that! Or maybe they do except they have better players

    Why is Alex being treated so badly when the other three CBs are allowed to make mistake after mistake?Is he being treated badly? Are all non main squad players in the league being mis-treated?

    How much did we pay for Torres? £50m

    How much? Still £50m

    Did he even have a shot? No – he was disappointing

    In a home game with eight goals? is that a question?

    When are we allowed to criticise Sturridge’s shit decision making (a la Kalou)? Does it have to be tit for tat.  The majority agree that Kalou is hopeless and unlikely to ever improve. With Sturridge there’s the hope he might improve

    Why do our midfield not track back or close down? Pass – I don’t have evidence of whether they do or don’t

    Why are our CBs so far apart all the time? Pass – I don’t have evidence of whether they are or aren’t

    Can we have the old Drogba back?  No – he’s in the Autumn of his career.

    Shouldn’t a manager play to his players strengths rather than set them up in a way that seems guaranteed to lose?  Only if we want to play the same forever. Transition may take some time and be painful.  Think of it as if you’re performing some restructuring of your house.  It may get dusty, you’ll need to wash in the kitchen sink and live on takeaways for a while.

    We’ve conceded eight goals in our only two games against decent teams and neither have played well – that worries me and I don’t think we should stick our heads in the sand and pretend it will go away. Is it time to take our heads out the sand and sack AVB?

  15. Benjami

    I disagree with the Sturridge bashing, I missed the game at SB and was
    only half able to watch the match on TV (thankfully) but the bits I saw
    he was beating Santos at RB and getting into some good positions. OK he
    has a lot of work to do and must knuckle down, but he has the right
    attitude and a good season could see him cement a place in the England
    first team.

    He could be a great player for us next season! (Note to AVB: he is only
    allowed to use his right foot in training for the next few weeks!)

    Two things worried me in this game:

    1. Torres, I thought he was poor and offered very little. As others have
    said above, Torres goals since we bought him compared with RVP in 2011
    is hilarious. Imagine how those additional goals at the end of last
    season and so far this season would have changed things…

    It can feel like we are playing with 10 men sometimes.

    2. Defence and Petr Cech. Arsenal 5 goals on target and 5 goals. He was
    beaten at his near post twice which I find inexcusable, block that off
    and if he beats you at the far post then you have to accept it.

    I don’t blame the high line for our poor performances it is the players
    themselves. I wonder if we will be looking for a CB this Christmas, and
    who it could possible be. We need a new Carvalho, for the moment the
    only defence I can see is Cole, Terry, Alex and Ivan in the big games.

    Bos and Luiz in the games when we expect to win and can afford to be a bit more open.

    For me Malouda and Kalou out at Xmas and Hazard in (but only if we get
    him cheap somehow). That would allow us Hazard Torres Sturridge upfront
    which should be very creative on its own, with both “wingers” able to
    beat men and open up space with their pace for Torres.

    That would leave Mata behind to orchestrate our passing game and leave
    two spots for midfielders to destroy play and dominate our midfield.

    AVB has the characteristics I like in a manager and seems to learn from
    his mistakes. As long as we finish n the top 4 he can stay as long as he

    Also we should leave Stamford Bridge, it is too small for us to match
    the gate revenues of the other teams. However we must keep the naming
    rights of the next stadium in my opinion and I would love to see us
    offer cheaper tickets and be more family orientated than the teams
    around us. That is where I want to see RA’s money going!

    And into improving our facilities both in terms of training, the local area, and scouting network. Stakeholders yo!

    • Anonymous

      Agree that we need the next Carvalho.  Great defender but could also attack.  Luiz is a great attacking back but can’t defend reliably.

      Then again Carvalho’s speed compimented Terry’s lack of.  Depending on how we replace Terry will affect the choice of the other centre back.

      • Nick

        What Luiz needs to work on apart from the basics of defending is the dark arts of defending, which Carvalho was so good at. If Luiz can be a bit slyer, more cunning with his pushes/pulls/trips etc he might yet turn out to be the next Carvalho. Fingers crossed.

  16. Anonymous

    Probably the only question that matters is the one a few wise heads have alluded to above: Is this what Roman wants to see?

    My hunch: yes, it is.

    Think back to some unpleasant home defeats of recent memory: Sunderland and Liverpool last season. In both of those games we looked utterly bereft, tired, sluggish, like we’d lost from the moment the kickoff occurred.

    Without wishing to bleat about bad luck or whatever, it’s unarguable that yesterday we could perfectly easily have won. (Or lost by a couple more.) From the south end of the East Upper where I sit, I’m more or less right behind the line of those two shots from the left of the area that Mata had in the final minutes: either could easily have gone in. The number of chances we made in the first 15 minutes yesterday would have accounted for about three games’-worth in our slump of last season. (And yes Gervinho shouldn’t have missed an open goal, and yes Lukaku got away with a block before Mata’s goal … I’m not saying the result was unfair.)

    The point is that we played fast and loose and made a lot of chances. Take away the result and it was bloody good fun.

    I think that’s what Roman’s after. If he keeps investing and remains willing to back AVB through a couple of loopy seasons, there’s no reason not to think that something pretty impressive could eventually come out of this.

    Maybe it’s just me, but losing those two games in a row doesn’t feel anything like dropping points did in the latter half of last season. The momentum’s different, the context’s different.

    • Anonymous

      I suspect you’re right and this is the style of play Roman wants from his team.

      The big question is what will he do if we drop enough points to threaten that precious CL qualification place he seems to care about so much too – and has Ron Gourlay whinging about being hampered in his efforts to build the brand world-wide?

  17. PeteW

    I like a lot about Sturridge – just as I like a lot about other squad players – but he has looked badly outclassed against the better opposition. 

    of course Alex is being treated badly! He’s gone from first choice to fourth and can’t get a start no matter how badly the three in front of him perform (Ivan was as bad yesterday as Luiz the week before). I thought AVB was refreshing in that he treated everybody equally? Doesn’t look like it here. We miss Alex badly.

    Transition is all well and good, but we shouldn’t be committing defensive suicide while doing so and I can’t help feel that if AVB continues to set up the way he does, we’re going to concede many many more needless and silly goals. This is a tight league, and we can’t afford to concede with a great player like DD on the wane and Torres patently not good enough to take his place.

    The football we played yesterday wasn’t entertaining, it was bad and while I admire AVB, he needs to start learning fast.

  18. Machchan

    Yes, defensive frailties cost us yet again.  I fully support AVB’s philosophy; I don’t however believe this philosophy includes leaving gaping holes in defence like we are doing.  Cant understand why Bosingwa trotted across to the middle leaving acres of space for Santos to waltz into for their second.  Walcott’s goal came thanks to amateurish stand-and-stare defending from highly paid professionals.  Terry could be excused his slip, if we are generous.  A bit of calmness instead of panic-stations might have saved him the embarrassment, if  we are to judge less generously.

    We should be less worried about the attack not clicking – we will continue to score plenty of goals this season.  AVB, for all his public defending of our defence, is surely using the hair-dryer behind closed doors.  I would humbly suggest that he reconsider his defensive choices – give Ivan a run at RB over Bosingwa; give Alex and Luiz more opportunities at CB (yes, of course they have also been error prone but they were solid against Everton last week); and give Cole a bit of a break by giving the boy Bertrand more time at LB (wasn’t he fantastic against Everton, nullifying Drenthe’s considerable challenge and creating opportunities at the other end too?!)

  19. Anonymous

    So I caved in and watched MOTD.

    Cech looked really suspect to me, more than I’ve seen in a while. Sturridge seemed to do fine, other than being selfish in good positions.

    Watching Spurs tear QPR apart makes me smile. QPR deserve it. But it scares me that they’re making it look so easy. Will easily rival us for a top 4 finish.

  20. Der_Kaiser

    Cheers for all the comments folks. Simple fact is virtually every team lauded for it’s attacking play is built on a solid defence, good possession and (mostly) squeezing and pressing the available space when you don’t have the ball. Yesterday we were utterly incapable of managing any of those.

    When Guardiola took over at Barcelona he said that they were horrible without the ball and set about sorting that element of their play out; they are now pretty much the best pressing team there is – win the ball from them and 2-3 of them are hunting you before you can get a pass away. We’re the opposite of that – we were OK in the first half but dreadful in possession and without it in the second. Given the Opta stat floating around last week that Arsenal were caught in possession more than any other PL / CL team, you would have thought AVB would have seized upon that and made good use but it appears that it was ignored.

    We know that some of the squad aren’t suited to that style of play, so we need to give AVB the time to sort things personnel wise, but he has to acknowledge that there are limitations with some of the current crop. I like the guy, but lauding him as some kind of tactical genius at this stage is way too premature; some of yesterday’s defending was Scolari-esque which shouldn’t pass without comment.

    Would love to have seen a 28 year old Carvalho in this side – would be absolutely ideal for AVB’s set up.

  21. Anonymous

    I disagree with the ‘we were bad’ sentiment. It was entertaining. Bloody entertaining. At half time an d 2-1 up we were bouncing in the bar (no thanks to Singha junk beer). At times we looked good going forward. We had pace that was entirely missing from the Ancelotti style we played last season.  It’s just we made big mistakes at the back from experienced players who should know better. We had our tail tweaked that’s all. And I don’t know where this shipping goals thing is from. Before yesterday we had one of the top 3 defensive records in the league. It was bad day at the office. A blip. A one off.  And if good players don’t perform as expected there’s little anyone can do.Fergie couldn’t do much when Rooney went off the boil. Wenger couldn’t prevent Thierry Henry’s decline. We might just be seeing the end of some of the players careers. I think our evolving style will require new personnel and after 4 months it seems a bit harsh to be raising the prospect of AVB being sacked. The things I’ve seen said about him and some of the team on Twitter have been perverse to say the least. 

    Alex has been treated badly unless of course he’s been told exactly why he’s not playing face to face, in which case that’s very fair. We just don’t know. Ditto Kalou. How do we know AVB hasn’t said face to face that they can go? Unfairness would be keeping them in the dark. But not playing them is a choice, a hard nosed managerial choice. Like not picking Lampard or Drogba. If AVB is not choosing them so as to show who’s boss then he has my backing rather than the much loved Ancelotti who was of course liked by the players, because he was weak and seemed to pick them picked them on influence and seniority rather than form. It’s a worry when Cech makes errors like he did for the Santos goal, when  JT forgets his studs on a pitch we insist on soaking before and during the game (can someone tell me why?), when Malouda saunters around the pitch and makes horrible passes as he did to JT. What we might be seeing is the slow death of JM’s squad. I’ll be sorry to see some go. Anelka (yes Grants choice I know) but it’s his choice will be a loss, Kalou (for me) less so, DD I wish could stay as a mentor for the younger players and Malouda is a fraction of the player we saw under Guus and Carlo in his first year. But anything beats our Wimbledon like hoof the ball to Drogba shit we’ve seen last year and under other coaches. Meireles looks a great buy, Luiz can and will be our Carvalho, Ramires and Sturridge have speed and fight. Torres was looking great pre-red card, has a poor game and everyone says he’s shit again! Ivan was a beast vs Everton and yesterday was a bit leggy so maybe he was a bit tired? Let’s not forget some of the team had a long game versus Everton and have played in depleted teams recently due to shit ref decisions.I thought Romans trigger finger was fast but it doesn’t compare to the fans trigger fingers and minds it seems.   

    • Ryan

      Fair point. AVB stated that we had one of the best defences in the league prior to yesterday… But we have played Stoke, West Brom, Norwich, Sunderland, Swansea, Bolton, Everton and QPR. Not too testing. In the two more difficult games we have played we’ve conceded 8 goals. And it could’ve been more. We have conceded goals when we have been in control against weaker opposition. It worries me. It makes me think we’re liable to concede too easily, especially against quality opposition and in tight situations. Maybe we haven’t conceded a “hatful” of goals. Yet. But can you honestly say you’re looking forward to playing City? What odds do you think we’d be to keep a clean sheet?
      I’m not trying to say AVB doesn’t know what he’s doing or that he should be sacked or even that his footballing philosophy is wrong per-se. It just isn’t working at the moment. We’ll get away with it against teams lacking class or ambition in attack but against world class teams and players we look poor defensively. And will inevitably be shipping the proverbial hatful. Lessons have to be learnt.

      • Anonymous

        Then its the defenders who need to get in the game. Not sure AVB can be held responsible for Malouda’s hospital pass and JTs ridiculous fall. Goal 5 was not inevitable but likely when you’re trying to retrieve a game. Had we not committed so many forward to try and get to 4-4 I’m sure many fans would have moaned like fuck about that as well. AVB might like the high line but Walcotts goal was nothing to do with a high line, it was purely down to amateurish shit defending by experienced players who should know better. Actually lets look at each Arsenal goal

        1.) Fuck all to do with high line defending. Ivan and JT caught stone cold static and Gervinho allowed to run in. Shit defending but fuck all to do with tactics. 
        2.) Yep high line defending to blame here and a right back MIA, plus a goalkeeper who should have done better
        3.) Amateurish and embarassing defending allowed Walcott to dance through 4 players and make Ashley Cole look a mug. Cech might have done more to narrow angle. 
        4.) Shit ball from Malouda, comedy slip from JT which is criminal when RVP is stalking you
        5.) 4 vs 2 because we were pushing for last gasp equaliser. Not really a high line defending issue as a desperation issue. 

        So in context not really a lot to do with high fucking lines really.   How often will we score 3 at home and lose? Come to think of it, how often will and have we scored 3 and lost. people are hitting panic buttons because of back to back defeats due to player fuck ups rather than managerial naivety. 

        I’m just asking people to get a grip and see it as a bad defeat based on uncharacteristic player errors rather than tactical errors.

        • Ryan

          Tactical or not. It was bad defending. Bosingwa is an incompetent defender. JT isn’t the player he was. Cech isn’t the keeper he was. Mikel isn’t Makele and nobody is Rico Carvalho. I m not hitting any panic buttons. I think we knew all of this already. To say we conceded the fifth when we were pressing for an equalizer is fair enough. I m not worried about the fifth goal. It was the previous four that really concerned me. And the fact they could’ve had a few more. It’s no time to panic or take the cream puff. But it is sobering in terms of our realistic ambitions this season. That is all.

  22. Ben

    Fucking unacceptable from Chelsea, I spent a bloody fortune to go to yesterdays game, I don’t get to many.  I can take us losing but not some piss poor Arse team knocking 5 past us. So many players that I saw in blue yesterday should be utterly ashamed of themselves. Its Sunday night I,m still raging with anger and I feel I,ve every right to be.

  23. Vik

    I personally don’t see chelsea winning the league. The league cup is about it if AVB fields a strong side in the competition.. first off against Liverpool. Also don’t see us retaining a top 4 position unless there is heavy investment in January. I would prefer not being in the top 4 and having all the 30 year olds fuck’ed off! 
    Cech has no competition and its been like this for many years.. a new goalie is needed. I would promote Turnbull to first choice. AVB needs to take command.

  24. Ethan

    I wonder what would happen if surgeries were shown like football matches. Would there be as many armchair surgeon, fantasy snippers, arterial experts all typing feverishly to prove that they know better than educated, trained, certified professionals? 

    AVB did not fall off a bus and land in the Chelsea manager seat, he was selected based on performance and promise. Either you like his style or you don’t, either he is getting the best out of his players or he isn’t, either he’s doing what Roman wants him to do or he isn’t. To think both AVB and Roman are idiots who don’t know what they’re doing and that YOU know what’s wrong/who to play/what formations we need over AVB is cuntish lunacy.

    • Ryan

      Well it’s a discussion isn’t it? It’s not a case of knowing better than a professional. Is it ok to criticise Malouda’s pass to Terry? He’s a professional too. Didn’t fall off a bus into his £100,000 a week job either. Of course he is a better footballer than any of us. Or the majority of respected pundits. Are you saying you have to be Johan Cruyff to suggest someone has played poorly? Do you have to your coaching badges to suggest that our defending was poor on Saturday? Football is about opinions. Yours, mine, the managers. I actually think that Villas-Boas was privately fuming that we conceded 5 goals but is much too smart to start apportioning blame and undermining his players publicly. He is too intelligent and talented not to realise our defence is not good enough to achieve what we all want to achieve.

  25. Cunningplan

    No doubting the result and scoreline was disappointing, but fuck guys, how do you think Arsenal and Utd fans felt after their abject surrender with 6 and 8 respectively? And to be honest Arsenal should have scored more against Utd, didn’t they miss a penalty and some guilt edged chances. All we hear about Utd, is how good Smalling and Jones are, yet their poor positioning and naivety are overlooked.

    Remember we shipped four agaisnt Villa not so long ago, when our defence was supposedly watertight, I still maintain these are freakish results and scorelines.

    I’d rather us lose if we have to, by a two goal margin to our direct rivals, than the five and six that Utd and Arse have.

    As far as expectations go, nobody has tipped us to win the league, but I don’t see why we won’t or can’t finish in the top four, just love the old cliche… long way to go yet.

  26. PeteW

    we’ll finish top three – anybody who says anything else is being hysterical. But we won’t win any trophies until the defending shapes up, and that isn’t just the back four  it’s also the midfield who didn’t do their job. I’d bring back  Ivan-Alex-Terry-Cole for a bit as that is our tightest unit and has been for ages. it clearly is tactical, we gave Arsenal far too much space and didn’t put them under anywhere near enough pressure, and  the gaps in our back four have been a feature of play under AVB, so it probably does have something to do with him.

    criticism of cech is beyond belief. when you are left one on one so many times, there’s not much you can do. His keeping has been spectacular for the last two years and there is very little he could have done.

    terry wasn’t that bad either – the fourth goal was 95 per cent Malouda. Terry would never have caught RVP and probably would have brought him down for a red card. 

  27. Anonymous

    Colour me hysterical then Pete.

    The top two are a given, and third and forth is a fight between us, Spurs, Arsenal and Liverpool IMO. Not sure Newcastle will last the distance.

    We don’t look like keeping a clean sheet at all, and we’ve played some awful teams. We’re scoring goals from everywhere apart from the position that matters – centre forward. I’m not over-reacting purely to Saturday but we looked off the pace last week against QPR before the penalty and Foy got involved. I watched Spurs yesterday and they destroyed QPR. we haven’t done that all season.

    Not sure what it is, but something’s not clicked.

  28. Der_Kaiser

    TG – may well be.

    The problem is that the way we seem to be set up invites pressure if we’re not in possession, which in turn gives rise to mistakes.

    Take a look at Drogba’s goal up at Anfield which pretty much sealed us the league in Carlo’s penultimate season; we pressed well from the front and simply forced Gerrard into a risky back pass which we capitalised on.  Teams are finding it too easy to pressure us at the moment and that gives rise to daft mistakes which are being capitalised on.

    The worst thing about Saturday is that the DVD will be sitting on every PL coach’s desk and will be a very handy instruction manual as to how to set about Chelsea.  Yes, individual slips may have helped but the situation needs sorting.

    • WorkingClassPost

      A decent perspective indeed.
      As someone with a definite Irish heritage, I have always accepted racist banter (and abuse) for just what it is: sticks and stones etc.

      Comments about people’s size, sexuality, stupidity, ugliness or whatever are far more hurtful in that they isolate the person and are directed at them as individuals, rather than as part of a larger group. 

      So why should the word police make it worse to say something in the heat of the moment, than to deliberately cheat, or to physically assault a fellow professional ending their career? Or to cause hard working builders to commit suicide?

      No life changing stigma attached to these acts.

      Grow up Anton and walk away a better person.

  29. Anonymous

    In classic bipolar Chelsea fashion we appear to be splitting into 2 camps:

    1) Don’t panic – it was just a blip like the crazy 2-4 Man City game in 09-10. Normal service will be resumed next week.

    2) Perhaps, there’s a real problem here. 10 league games without a clean sheet and 8 goals conceded against the only 2 CL place challengers we’ve played so far.

    I’m not totally convinced either way, though tending to the latter – and it’s given the “even Cech is shite” and “sack AVB immediately” nutters the fuel they needed for some ranting.

    Forgot to mention I steeled myself to skip through my recording of Sky’s live coverage eventually, many hours after I got home and noted with interest that right at the end of the programme the Goodyear blimp wandered off down The Thames to give a nice aerial shot of the Albert Bridge with Battersea Power station and Nine Elms in the background. More ironic comment on our future?

  30. WorkingClassPost

    Agree that was a thoroughly entertaining 90 odd mins, or should that be odd 90 mins?

    FT did what any striker should and got in some great positions waiting for the simplest of tap ins, but the ball did not get released in time. Danny seems to be scoring now, but if he can’t pass he needs to stay in the middle, or stay on the bench until we’re in a position to afford his profligacy.

    And what is it with the pitch, when so many of our guys are slipping and sliding, yet the visitors seem to manage fine? If it is the studs then somebody needs to sort us out.

    Another thing that struck me a few matches ago, was the stats which showed us having more possession but also having covered more distance than the opposition, when it’s usual for the team chasing the ball to do the running.  

    This may be enjoyable, but is it sustainable over a whole season?

  31. Marco

    Strange how the most interesting debates on here always follow on from our worst performances.

    I am with those who argue that there is something deeply wrong with the team rather than with individual performances. Arsenal played the same way QPR did last week in the first-half and got the same panicky response.

    This team is being asked to change from the ‘defence-in-depth’ style set by Jose and maintained by Hiddink and Ancelotti to the one pioneered by Barcelona and so far it hasn’t worked except in fits and starts against lesser teams. 

    To make it work the players need to change their game and adjust to the new tactics faster than they have, or AVB needs to speed up the learning process. In that sense AVB is responsible for our failure – except no rational supporter will blame him for not getting it right after three months in charge. The man needs time and the price for that may be that we don’t win anything this season.

    Good players as they are I doubt that JT, Ivan (playing as a centre-back) or Alex are fast enough, or adept enough on the ball to cope with players pressing them high up while they are bringing the ball out, or coming at them 3 against 3 or 4 against 4 on the counter when we are chasing the game.

    You could dig deeper still and point to the fact that some of our midfielders are not quick enough either and I believe we look poorer without Meireles and I would also like to see Oriol Romeu starting every game as the holding midfielder. That’s not a slur on John Obi or Lamps – just a reflection of the fact that the new style of play may not suit either of them (I am happy to be proved wrong here).

    I hope AVB is hurting as much as the rest of us and will see this result as a sign that he needs to speed up his reformation of the side and jettison players who can’t, or won’t, adapt. Time will tell whether he is ruthless enough to do that.

  32. Ben

    I never expected us to win anything this year and am totally happy to give our manager some time to change the playing style/culture/whateverthefuck but I have been going to the Bridge since the days of Chopper, saw us regularly when we were shit but have never seen us ship 5 at home in such an amateurish fashion to such an average side. I,m not panicking, am still sure we will finish top four but really feel there are several extremely well paid players in our side who need to take a long hard look at themselves. Still angry, still disgusted

    • Anonymous

      Very good article Marco. Jonathan Wilson has written probably the best book on football tactics “Inverting the Pyramid” and unlike many knows what he is saying. In general he said that many of us knew long time ago, but it is the formalization of knowledge is important in this case and Jonathan Wilson is the one who can do it.   

  33. Marco

    ‘Inverting the Pyramid’ definitely one of the most interesting books on football ever written B_M, although a little dry for me. Wilson tends to under-emphasise the irrational factors in football and the influence players can exert over and above the formation created  by the manager. Although not so in this report.

    • Anonymous

      Marco, in our last game players have exerted over the formation suggested.. just with negative sign, unfortunately.  

  34. Anonymous

    I was there when we were shit, I was there when we were great and I’ll be there when we’re whatever.  Doesn’t matter what’s happening on or off the pitch, I still love it.

      • Cunningplan

        I think that’s what the media want, they were never happy he got it back.
        Regardless of the fact that the alleged affair never really happened, if I remember correctly didn’t the NOTW have to write an apology and retraction.

        I’m afraid JT will be classed as an adulterer, and a racist, because that’s what people want to believe.

        • Anonymous

          From memory I think the NOTW had to apologise for a breach of privacy in respect of certain elements of the allegations, not for the story as a whole.

          In the same way that others are rushing to condemn Terry at the moment I don’t think we need to rush to defend him at the moment. The Club, to a certain extent have already painted themselves into a corner if the end result of this goes against JT.

          • Cunningplan

            Thank’s for the correction, but I do remember there was an article in one of the broadsheets with VP, and she categorically denied any affair. Normally in these situations the lady or ladies in question can’t wait to sell their sordid story to the rabid hounds of the press.  

          • Anonymous

            That may well be true but we’ll never know! The fact that she didn’t sue for defamation and had Max Clifford involved only muddy the water in my mind!

      • Ryan

        I doubt Rio will benefit. I don’t think he’ll captain England again regardless. His fitness means he probably won’t be playing regularly for England by the time the European Championships begin anyway.
        Undoubtedly the press hate JT but he has a habit of giving them what they’re looking for unfortunately. Just saying the words f&@king, black and c%#t in any context was suicidal. Knowing what he knows about press attention he ought to realise the sort of scrutiny he is subject to. Why give anyone the opportunity to take what you’re saying out of context. I’m yet to be convinced that this is just a “misunderstanding”. I suspect he did call Ferdinand what he is accused of calling him and immediately regretted it. I look forward to being proved 100% wrong and I hope this is all just a misunderstanding.

        • WorkingClassPost

          You’re probably right, Ryan, but I’m offering my best “conflict of interest; the witness’ statement is tainted m’lud” defence.

          Any how, he might just be getting revenge because JT got his job back from Rio.

          Not that he’s invented what JT [may have] said, but why he didn’t then just tell him to piss off and get on with it.

          • Ryan

            Ok fair enough. I see the conflict of interest but neither Ferdinand brother is a “witness”. The problem Terry has is that nobody, it would seem, heard what he said. There are no witnesses. Just the T.V footage. Which is more difficult to discredit. It is what it is. It’s impartial. We are really just talking context. I think Ferdinand is upset that he possibly feels hoodwinked by Terry and Chelsea into supposedly accepting Terry’s explanation whilst not exactly in full possession of the facts. I do not think Anton Ferdinand deserves to be vilified or accredited with some vendetta towards JT over this. I believe they were friendly prior to this incident. I would also like to say before I am called disloyal or a traitor or whatever. I do fully support Terry as a Chelsea player and believe him innocent until his guilt is proven beyond reasonable doubt.

  35. bluebayou

    3-5.  What JM would dismissively call a hockey score. If the daily mail is to be believed (?) AVB has resorted to the fine old hockey practice of a “bag skate”

    It will be interesting to see if he gets a positive reaction. As many above have identified, it’s either tactics, poor execution or a combination of both. Well it seems that AVB isn’t backing down on strategy so we’ll have to see what gives.

    I didn’t see the game and only caught the last half hour on the radio. The commentary was a mess, they spent more time trying to tell you what had happened in the first half and about Rangers v Aberdeen and Man United v Everton than give you any idea of a pattern on the pitch. David Pleat, gawd bless him, attempted some analysis but the commentataors were so overcome with excitement they wouldn’t let him develop any sensible flow.

    So particular thanks KJ for managing to keep it amusing and others for an overview of another trip in the Chelsea Clown Car.

    We all kinda said we were going to be interested in change and development rather than winning the league and so on. Not quite sure we expected this. But it’s early days.

    Fabulous photo btw. Speaks volumes.

    I must step in and defend Malouda for a moment. Not for Saturday’s performance. But it is worth noting that he played both Carling Cup games at 120 minutes each, indeed the Everton game as Captain, and put in a proper shift both games. So while his performances may not be where we would like them to be, I think it’s difficult to assign negative characteristics to the player.

  36. Dylbo Baggins

    Howdy all, I’m back in the UK in December and hoping to the Bridge for the first time since Drogba came off the bench to score the winner against Cluj in ’08. Chelsea are playing Villa. Can anyone educate me on how i can best go about getting tickets and when these would go on sale?


    • Anonymous

      For ticketing info I think the details usually come up in the relevant section of the website. www dot chelseafc dot com and look fot the section about tickets. The home Premiership games usually sell out very quickly so be sharp.

  37. Anonymous

    Ok, the depression has set in now. Behind Newcastle. Fucking Newcastle. Mike Ashley’s project at the barcodes has normally left us looking like a perfectly ordinarily run club.

    And theyre above us. Spurs will be as well with their game in hand.

    There’s your motivational piece AVB. Just stick up a copy of the table and shame them into performing.

  38. Anonymous

    Oh just fuck off Tony Gale. We get it, you don’t like Chelsea. Why youre still asked to commentate on our games mystifies me.

    In other news, nice goal. Lovely link up play from Torres and Ramires. Cool and calm finish. Strikers take note.

    We still look bobbins at the back though…..

  39. Anonymous

    Is this mildly interesting, or is it just meaningless corporo-beaurocratic guff?,,10268~2501875,00.html

    In other news, I’m watching us gank Genk on my iPod Teensy. This would be the first time I’d seen Romeu play, were it not for the fact that my nose prevents me from getting my eyes close enough to the screen to figure out which one he is.

  40. Anonymous

    The Chelsea sponsored festive blip just gets earlier and earlier every year, doesnt it?

    Utterly woeful. I’d be after a refund if I were Mark or one of the other hardy souls.

    Whoever decide David Luiz should take a penalty for us deserves to be fucking shot

  41. Anonymous

    Kill me. Now.

    AVB just confirmed Anelka and Luiz were our penalty takers tonight. Has he not ever watched Anelka stand with he ball on the spot from 12 yards? He’s fucking awful.

    That’s just criminal. Sorry, but it is. I have no faith in Anelka taking a penalty. But them I had no faith in Torres doing anything after tonight. He was poor. For our supposed embarrassment of riches up front, we’re actually pretty lacking.

    Grumble grumble. More beer, less blog for me.

    • Ryan

      Presumably they’re both pretty good penalty takers… in training. Scoring penalties when it matters is completely different. It requires supreme confidence and faultless technique. Watch every Eric Cantona penalty for Utd. He sends the goalkeeper the wrong way nearly every time.
      To be fair I only listened on the radio and they didn’t say it was a bad penalty, more a good save. From what I heard (bear in mind the tactical analysis was from Stan Collymore, so correct me if I’m wrong!) we struggled to retain possession and defended poorly again. This time it was against a team that looked embarrassingly poor last week and hadn’t scored previously in the CL. Now we will find out if AVB is man enough to manage this lot. I hope so.


    Five moments of Spanish glory captured in paint…

    Pressed to name the five key goals in the history of the Spanish national team, most soccer fans would easily be able to pick the two most recent.The deft chip on the run with which Fernando Torres beat Germany goalkeeper Jens Lehmann to seal Spain’s…..

Comments are closed.