The Guardian, Dominic Fifield: “Chelsea had paraded their record goalscorer during the interval here, an emotional Bobby Tambling accepting the rapturous reception from all sides as, wheelchair bound after four months in hospital, he sat in front of the Shed End and soaked up the applause through his tears. The locals revelled in his presence even if, by the final whistle, it was this club’s present day talisman who was drawing the acclaim, with Frank Lampard now one goal shy of equalling Tambling’s tally as time ticks down on his own career in these parts.”
The Daily Telegraph, Ben Rumsby: “Not quite a “former Blues midfielder” he was billed by Chelsea’s own TV channel this week, Frank Lampard demonstrated his enduring importance to Chelsea after coming off the bench to inspire them to victory and move to within one goal of their all-time scoring record. Having not scored for six weeks, the midfielder demonstrated the kind of timing that has marked his Stamford Bridge career by netting goal number 201 in front of the current chart-topper, Bobby Tambling.”
The Independent, Jack Pitt-Brooke: “Lampard’s penalty came three minutes after Oscar had put Chelsea ahead just before half-time. All it took was those two swift attacks to move the Blues back up to third place in the Premier League, one point ahead of Arsenal and three clear of Tottenham Hotspur. In the 43 minutes before that brief burst, and the 45 after, this was an afternoon of serene strolling control for Chelsea, who dominated possession against a Swansea side not desperate to make life difficult for them.”
The Official Chelsea FC Website: “Victory at home to Swansea on Sunday afternoon consolidated Chelsea’s position in the top four. Goals from Oscar and Frank Lampard, who came on for the injured Ramires in the first half, extended the gap to Spurs in fifth place to three points, with our north London neighbours only managing a draw at Wigan on Saturday. Two goals inside five minutes at the end of the half did the damage, after which the result was never in doubt,”
43′ Oscar 1-0
45+1′ Lampard (pen) 2-0
Match of the Day highlights
Extremely important three points, great game. Personally want to single out Frank and not for scored penalty. After Ramires went off and Frank stepped in the game has significantly changed.
Apologies for the lack of posts in recent days. I was laid low by a nasty norovirus and the last thing on my mind was football (I think my mind was all that remained of me by Friday evening). I’m sensing that most of us just want this godforsaken season to end anyway.
Hope you’re feeling a little more chipper now, Nick.
Important win, that. A fairly 3rd gear affair overall – Swansea aren’t quite on the beach yet but they’re certainly packed and ready to go. Atmosphere was very sedate but predominantly happy – there wasn’t even any 16th minute applause.
Game changed when Frank came on – set the first goal up, scored the second and that was that, really. Cahill and JT looked pretty solid, reassuring to see Ash back. Luiz was very decent in midfield after being generally bloody awful against Basel. Our two PFA team of the year nominees were excellent. Hope Ramires won’t be out for too long.
While Ba has scored some decent goals for us, the reality that he is a very average footballer is becoming clearer with every game – his hold-up play is truly terrible; would have preferred Torres up there yesterday after 60 mins or so. Whatever his faults are, he can at least control and hold onto the ball (most of the time).
Beat Spurs and don’t lose to United and we’re pretty much there, I think. Nice trip to Amsterdam would round the season off well.
Well, I think you might be being a bit generous to our performance, JD.
For most of the first half hour I was sitting at home considering myself fortunate that my season ticket seat had unexpectedly sold on Viagogo within hours when I stuck it on there several weeks ago meaning I hadn’t been tempted to turn up in person.
I only resorted to dodgy internet streams when I noticed that Sky had decided yet again not to offer a full extended highlights show and my recent freebie sub to Chelsea TV has now expired.
Perhaps some of the team were suffering from remnants of Nick’s norovirus too – there were certainly some sluggish defending and misplaced passes scattered through our game that a more up for it Swansea might have exploited and I’d agree Ba looked pretty poor and ineffective for long spells.
Speaking of Sky, I’ve had another “Hello David” e-mail from them pointing out that ESPN will cease to exist in July and therefore my sub will end at that point. However, they offer a link where I can cancel it earlier if I wish, something that was conspicuously unavailable online or via my box when I contemplated junking ESPN a year or so ago when they dropped coverage of the Monday Night NFL game in the UK.
Why would Sky want to encourage us to unsubscribe to ESPN early? Is there some connection to the ongoing disputes I heard about on radio recently between Sky and BT who are replacing ESPN?
I’ve also had a ‘Hello David’ email advising me that my German porn channels are being cancelled?
Fairly decent game, I thought, until half time at least. I was a bit surprised to see Swansea set up so defensively, though I suppose I shouldn’t have been: it’s the way most visiting teams approach their trip to Stamford Bridge. Perhaps I’d fallen for the media blather about Swansea being the Welsh Barcelona. At any rate, we looked much the better team even for that long stretch whether nothing much was happening in terms of chances. It was probably a bonus that were scored twice in quick succession, too. Swansea might have been a bit more motivated at 1-0 but two goals down meant they could give up pretty quickly after ten minutes’ token effort at the beginning of the second half, and from then on nothing really happened at all, which was fine by us of course.
There was some impressive stuff in our 15-minute purple patch, though. Terrific team goal finished by Oscar, and Mata’s dribble to win the penalty was fairly special too.
I reckon Ba was a sensible buy but yes, fairly clearly a stopgap solution to the ridiculous situation we found ourselves in earlier this season with only Nando able to play centre-forward. I’m hoping Lukaku gets a proper turn next season. I can understand all the excitement about Falcao but I’m not really sure that’s the kind of forward we need (although it wouldn’t be much fun seeing him go to Citeh or the Arse instead).
I appear not to be the only one to have gone a bit awol but life has a habit of getting in the way from time to time, and this has been one of those times.
Managed to catch most of our games, though, and things have certainly improved over the last while. Gotta say that Rafa’s rant seemed to calm things down and allowed everyone to concentrate on the matches ahead and the results mostly followed suit.
Extra big game coming up (they’re all pretty big these days anyway).
And yet again we’re the last team left in Europe.
One benefit of the Europa League has been the ability to plan ahead – all matches on a Thursday – which has been a real bonus recently. I may be old school here, but winning any European trophy is still really important to me and I cannot understand the way our media have tried to talk it down, just imagine if one of the mancs was in the final, it would be all about European conquerors blah blah blah. If nothing else, it proves that last season was no fluke and we really are a major force.
Also hoping that we see sense and keep our seniors on board for a while longer, a big part of football is balancing youth and experience, and it’s hard to imagine who else seeking a club record, would’ve played Luiz in for his spectacular instead of just taking a pop himself.
Anyway, better sign off now, got a few million emails to catch up with while I’m at the computer…