Unfortunately I had to make do with radio commentary and brief Match of the Day highlights, so links to match reports and video highlights only I’m afraid. Post your observations on the game in the comments.
The Guardian, Daniel Taylor: “Avram Grant has his first league win and even if Chelsea’s fans still refuse to sing his name (it may be well into 2008, if at all, before that moment arrives) it was noticeable yesterday that the visiting fans were not as vocal in their continued support of Jose Mourinho. Winning always tends to placate unhappy supporters and, after a workmanlike 1-0 victory reminiscent of the old days, Grant is entitled to claim an air of normality is returning – if, that is, life is ever normal at Chelsea.”
The Times, Tom Dart: “Chelsea were entertaining yesterday, but for neutrals – not quite what their watching owner, Roman Abramovich, would have hoped for. The scoreline was the traditional symbol of dour, grinding efficiency, but that would be a misrepresentation of this match. Chelsea performed with an insecurity that was not redolent of the José Mourinho years. They did not concede but they gave up plenty of chances and possession.”
Daily Telegraph, Tim Rich: “If, by removing Mourinho, Chelsea’s owner, Roman Abramovich, hoped for a more entertaining side and a pivotal role for his friend, Andrei Shevchenko, he is being grimly disappointed. Grant argued yesterday that his first responsibility was to stabilise Chelsea’s results before unveiling the beautiful game, a process he said would take “several months”.”
The Independent, Sam Wallace: “Like a wilful teenager determined to establish his independence, Grant is bringing Shevchenko’s career to an abrupt halt regardless of the feelings of Chelsea’s sugar daddy, Roman Abramovich. Ushered into the inner circle at Chelsea on the basis that he believed he knew how to get the best out of the £31m man, Grant has no sooner been installed in power than he has curtly disregarded Shevchenko.”