The Guardian, Dominic Fifield: “This was a reaffirmation of the José Mourinho effect. The manager had been so disgusted by his team’s display on Tyneside – and dismayed by Eden Hazard’s timekeeping – that he carried through his threat to reshuffle the pack in search of a response, albeit not with 11 changes but six, one of which was enforced, surely stinging the pride of the discarded. There was validation, too, of the club’s lavish summer pursuit of Samuel Eto’o and Willian from Anzhi Makhachkala, with that pair, so rusty upon arrival, enjoying their most productive evening yet in English football.”
The Daily Telegraph, Henry Winter: “This was an important result, and strong performance, an antidote to the supine effort at St James’ Park. It reminded the squad what Mourinho required: tactical selflessness, total commitment and being alive to every eventuality. Eden Hazard failed to show that by missing training on Monday and was left to languish in the stands. Eto’o delivered on Mourinho’s demands, scoring twice.”
The Independent, Sam Wallace: “Fernando Torres’ training ground injury on Monday left the Chelsea manager with no choice but to make a change in attack and so his team moved on from that scrappy defeat to Newcastle on Saturday with a classically ruthless European performance. Mourinho’s side were not at their best, and they will have to play much better sides than Schalke, but it was the home team who took their opportunities. That was Eto’o who scored his second and third goals for the club, the first of which was a perceptive poacher’s goal that severely embarrassed the Schalke goalkeeper Timo Hildebrand. He scored a second on 54 minutes to kill the game and left to a standing ovation. His replacement Demba Ba scored the third, his first goal of the season.”
The Official Chelsea FC Website: “Chelsea’s position in Group E was greatly strengthened by our third straight win in the competition, a Samuel Eto’o double strike and a late goal from substitute Demba Ba giving us back-to-back victories over the Bundesliga side. If Eto’o’s first goal tonight owed a lot an opposition mistake, the second certainly didn’t when he capped a swift move with an emphatic finish. Schalke had threatened early on but were kept at bay for most of the game although Petr Cech was called on early in the second half with the score 1-0.”
31′ Eto’o 1-0
54′ Eto’o 2-0
83′ Ba 3-0
“We started a bit nervous and made a lot of mistakes. We lost a lot of balls in dangerous positions and we allowed Schalke to counter-attack with some danger. They had two good situations but after that our team recovered the balance and we controlled the game.
“We had comfortable possession, recovering the ball and playing in an aggressive way, attacking the spaces with two, three or four players. When we lost the ball we were aggressive the way we pressed and the way we defended.
“Our three guys behind the striker – Schurrle, Oscar and Willian – were very strong when the team lost the ball, very strong recovering positions and when the team was winning the ball, they were very strong attacking spaces with good pace. We won in quite a comfortable way.
“The Basel defeat put us in a difficult situation and it is fantastic that after the fourth fixture we are almost qualified.”
- Chelsea host Schalke at Stamford Bridge – in pictures
- Chelsea’s Eden Hazard misses defeat of Schalke after skipping training
- Samuel Eto’o’s ‘fox goal’ shows what he can still offer Chelsea
Haha! I’m liking the idea of the cryptic pictures, Nick. Got this one straight away, but only because I’ve been there on a few occasions. It’s a bit of a walk from the station which might explain things 🙂
Indeed, another splendid pic choice, Nick – would it be too complicated to combine cryptic photos with musical references in the blog entry headline?
Not much to say about the game, other than that we seem to be well on the way to the record of most goals due to comedy defending by opponents in one season.
Meanwhile, those of you who follow our transatlantic cousins over on WAGNH may have spotted an article a couple of days ago about Roman’s long time adviser, the mysterious Marina Granovskaia, being appointed to a business role with Dutch club Vitesse, or Chelsea B as they wittily put it.
They also found a link on our official website I’d not spotted before, with only the second picture I’ve ever seen of her, which reveals that she was formally appointed a director and member of the club board in June this year:
This sent me off to my new Yearbook to compare and contrast with last season’s for any other changes among the shady ones in the background and discovered that the equally mysterious Mike Forde, previously shown as “Director of Operations” [whatever that means] and member of the club board has disappeared.
A silent assassination in the Kremlin again?
My mind works in mysterious ways. Musical references is probably pushing it a bit, though. It takes a while to come up with a (somewhat) relevant featured image.
Well it’s really quiet on here isn’t it ……..
Forgive the lenghty contribution. I’m in Sydney airport awaiting a flight to NZ. “Nothing to do, nowhere to go” as the song goes. I’m next to the hot dog stand, and not too far from a shop where you can buy all things Australian. Cue Charlie Drake. And what do you call aboomerang that won’t come back ?
In an oxymoronical (is that a word) fashion I ‘support’ Chelsea from New Zealand. So I guess most of the season I merely ‘follow’ Chelsea, and once or twice a year I manage to get to a game to do the real supporting thing. Last year I saw three games. We won on aggregate 9-3. But we only amassed 3 points and traipsed our miserable way towards Capital One cup semi-fina defeat to Swansea. It was a grim time. SWP FFS.
Follwing Chlsea from NZ requires cultivating a an insomnia habit . The most sociable kick offs are early season 12 o’clockers, where we can assemble in a bar at 2300. The rest of the time, to be frank, kick off times are shite. Getting my mate Chelsea Neil to motivate himself to get up to watch with me is hopeless and as such I muster an iron will, stick my alarm on for some ungodly hour, wake up my Mrs, get up at 2,3 or 4 a.m. , watch games alone and text my mates in the MHU. It’s no way to watch the beautiful game. But needs must.
A few weeks back I was on a work trip to London during the international break. Bad timing of course. But I did manage to eek the trip out and catch Chelsea Cardiff. We were in the shed upper, in the tickets that the Cardiff fans had returned. That made for a bit of fun and games but it also gave us a perfect view of Marshall dropping the ball, allowing Eto’o take advantage of what was a surely a foolish error by the hapless keeper. I saw one report which described the ‘keeper as a ‘gloveman’, which I quite enjoyed. They also described Torres’ change of pace to get around Clichy as a ‘delay move’. Brilliant stuff. I can’t find the reference but it must be in in the ‘Boston Goals’ glossary.
The WAGNH boys, did pontificate on why Hazard, Mata and Oscar aren’t our most effective threesome for breaking down defences,, especially were our fullbacks aren’t overlapping and creating width. And where we are – a al Barcelona – reticent to cross the ball. There might be something in that. The team we played on Wednesday (I haven’t seen the match yet but will look at a replay on Sunday) looked interesting. and little bit more direct. Perhaps we’ll see more of that from Jose in the coming weeks (WHU away for one).
Anyway, time’s up. I have noticed that very few women eat hot dogs.
Cheers all. I’ll leave you with a nice street I found whilst on the way to play croquet in The Gold Coast.
A striker will rarely score when Mata Oscar Hazard are playing behind him this is because the 3 are goal minded attacking midfielders and all of them will want to cut in and overlook the striker, the worst case scenario comes when you add Lampard and Ramirez ,you end up with 5 Mistakes, if Torres is added he becomes completely ineffectual and it becomes too crowded in the middle,as if its not enough Jose adds the unpredictable Luiz, and the blind crossing Ivanovic.If Jose wants to win matches he should rid off MAZCAR and put Willian in the hole drop Lampard and Luiz for Mikel and Cahill respectively.
Plans WBA, B and C. And no plan B ?
From 4-2-3-1, to 4-4-2, to 3-5-2, all seemingly requiring us to walk the ball in or cross from right back – usually along the floor. It would perhaps better serve our purpose to mix it up a bit. A big striker who can hold the ball up and cause a bit of discomfort for the Oppo’s back 4 ? Or at least to have that option.
I wonder what Jose will be thinking when he wakes on Sunday …………….
Ah, November. Month of terrible moustaches and even worse performances from Chelsea.
It’s nice to know some things are constant in our rapidly changing world.
(PS I don’t get the picture. Am I officially thick?)
(PPS sell all the players. Buy new ones. Did I say Mourinho out already?)
(PPPS sack the board)
Have to agree “Movember” is becoming a bit of a habit and concern in our lack of ability to win.
The furor from the media with our late penalty makes you think that we’re the only team that gets soft penalties. I’ve lost count over the years at the stonewall ones we’ve not been given at home.
How Clarke thinks that West Brom deserved the three points beggars belief, they came for the draw and that’s what they got, job done on his part.
Too many of our lot are just playing average games at the moment, Frank was poor yesterday and should have been dragged off at halftime.
Jose out and Rafa back! 😉 now where are my Clozapine.
Well would you believe that Sunderland result, puts our draw yesterday in a slightly better light.