West Bromwich Albion 1-3 Chelsea – Newspaper Reports, Goal Videos, Carlo’s Reaction

Newspaper reports

The Observer, Joe Lovejoy: “West Bromwich Albion are much improved under Roy Hodgson but Manchester United they are not, and Chelsea put a grim week behind them with a win much more convincing than the scoreline would suggest.”

Sunday Telegraph, Sandy Macaskill: “Fernando Torres is misfiring, Carlo Ancelotti might be a dead man walking, but Didier Drogba is on fire. The striker scored his second goal in as many games, dismantled West Bromwich Albion and gave Carlo Ancelotti something to smile about.”

Fulham and Hammersmith Chronicle, Dan Levene: “Torres, benched for the start following his abject showing at Old Trafford on Tuesday, gave a wry smile from the dugout, as Drogba assisted in each of Chelsea’s three goals at The Hawthorns.”

Independent on Sunday, Phil Shaw: “Chelsea’s eighth win in 11 Premier League games, only one of which has been lost, took them to within a point of second-placed Arsenal. Asked whether they were still contenders to retain their title, Ancelotti’s reply seemed to rule out any dramatic late surge while acknowledging that he may not be around come next August’s big kick-off. ‘I know very well we were not good enough this season, but I hope we can finish well,’ said the Chelsea manager. ‘After that the club will make a decision.'”

Official Chelsea FC Website: “Chelsea are back to winnings ways after coming from behind to produce a dominating performance at The Hawthorns.”

The goals

17′ Odemwingie 1-0
22′ Drogba 1-1
26′ Kalou 1-2
45′ Lampard 1-3

Carlo’s reaction

“Didier played very well, as did all the team.

“It is not easy to come here but we showed good character and personality, a good reaction to the goal because we maintained composure and the performance was really good.

“We played 4-3-3, maintaining Kalou and Malouda a little wide because West Brom have fantastic defensive organisation and they close very well the middle of the pitch using two lines close together. We wanted to play wide to have opportunities to put some crosses in and in the first half, on the left side we were very dangerous.

“Didier this year had the problem of malaria so lost some months when he was not 100 per cent but after that he has been able to use his abilities for the team. He has a body that means he can continue a long time as long as he continues to train well and be professional.

“The club bought Torres not to replace Drogba. We bought him because he is a fantastic striker and he is young but Drogba has been a very important player for this club and he will be in the future.

“We have a clear aim, to win the next six games, do our best and then wait and see what happens to the other teams.”

There are 26 comments

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  1. Jon

    oh how close Torres was to breaking his duck!!

    Thought we played an excellent game, recovered well from going a goal down and were in total control after that. Sure it’s just WBA, but you can only beat whats in front of you.

  2. Anonymous

    Football is all about confidence and belief.

    If we could play West Brom every other Saturday we’d have a lot more confidence and belief.


    I just wished Carlo had brought in Nando earlier (say 60th minute) when the team was in total control of the match and free flowing in the 4-3-3 (sirprise, surprise) increasing the odds of his scoring instead of putting him on the final 8-10 minutes of the game.

    Seems rather thoughtless to me. Now he has one more game under his belt without a goal. Why put him on at all for only 8 bloody minuted. Very disappointed in that.

  4. Anonymous

    Nobody actually saw this game then?

    I have nothing to report, saw nothing of it myself. By all accounts we were fairly good.

    This weekend has been a great reminder of the pleasures of schadenfreude towards the end of the season, though. We may be heading towards the fag end of a trophyless season, with a summer of uncertainty to look forward to and beyond that the glum inevitability of the fact that our team in mid-August will most likely consist of all the people who started against West Brom … but!

    But! United lose! Arsenal f*ck up in spectacular fashion!

    I don’t know whether I should be embarrassed to admit this or not, but I swear Saturday afternoon’s televised result gave me the kind of deeply satisfied made-my-week inward glow that followed the home win over Arse, back in the autumn when we were obviously going to win everything.

    Come on Schalke.

    • Anonymous

      I, too, had a week-end of indulgence in the old schadenfreude and saw 90-minute recordings of all three games, though I have to admit I made liberal use of the 6x button to get through the duller bits of the Manc fest and the Gooners late, late pratfall.

      You certainly couldn’t see from the respective performances on the pitch why we’re the side with a clamour to sack the manager, but then I think from the last blog we’re all edging to the conclusion that the problem lies with that enthusiastic bloke up in the directors’ box who’s itching to get involved all the time.

      Ours looked a very comfortable win in the end against a team who’d been on a decent run, after gifting them an early goal of a start. It would have been very easy for our heads to drop but we came back strongly, if with some help from equally generous defending.

      And please note the statistic in the Independent on Sunday report above as a counterweight to the “we’ve been shit since November” argument that’s had a fair bit of airing on here recently: it’s now 8 wins and 2 draws from our last 11 EPL games [and we all remember which was the defeat].

      Still, bring in van Basten ’cause Guus says so, that’ll solve everything for another couple of seasons.

  5. PeteW

    They sounded like they were playing with a monkey off their backs and a load of their minds. Maybe they hate the Champions League as much as I do? Maybe the pressure of going for every trophy every year for seven seasons is something they can’t handle. That’s why other managers refresh of course. It’s a mental thing as much as a physical one, and it’s something we haven’t done – altogether now – because we keep sacking our managers.

    Anyway, does anybody really think we should be selling Drogba this summer? Could be as big a mistake as dropping 50 big ones on Torres. He’s got at least a season in him yet.

    Pleased to see Kalou and Mikel starting and playing well, they haven’t been treated very well this season at all.

    Am at the Bridge for the game on Wednesday. Will the Spanish tart finally break his duck?

    • Anonymous

      You’re at the Bridge so will look out for you. Where are you sitting? If I can get the West Lower to chant “Peter, Peter, Peter” will you be gracious enough to stand up and wave?

  6. Der_Kaiser

    Rumours of the Drogs demise have certainly been somewhat exaggerated.

    Good result, and hopefully the Arse will continue their traditional loss of pucker that might enable us to nick second, which would be a great achievement in the circumstances.

    Someone please just send Torres on holiday until July. It’s like watching a hideous slo-mo car crash over and over again. A very expensive car at that.

  7. bluebayou

    A good weekend for the following:

    The previously malarial – Drogba and Kolo Toure (saw his brother score the winner for their club)

    The Manchester City nation

    Persons from the Potteries and others who like Stoke (including my 7 year old Chelsea supporting son for reasons I cannot fathom but worry may be disturbing enough for the social services to remove him to their care)

    Persons what support Liverpool – yes they are reduced to such small pleasures

    A bad weekend for the following

    Followers of the Trotters


    A mixed weekend for the following:

    The Manchester United nation.

    I have to say I felt joy for Stoke fans and sadness for Bolton fans. We have travelled that road, in the not too distant past.

    I felt joy for the City fans. Yes I know they probably slagged us off when we first got loads of money and now they’re going to own everyones arse for the next 100 years, but hey they’ve spent years in the dark and I don’t begrudge them their time in the sunshine.

    If we can’t at least feel a little pleasure in some long suffering fans having their day then where’s the love?

    And do you know what, I even felt a twinge of sadness for the Gooners. Let’s be fair that was about as cruel as it gets. And there but for the grace of God go we. It is only a passing emotion, which will be soon chased away the next time they are larging it about the place, but crickey that was a harsh way to see your hopes being crushed.

    Good to see a bit of form returning, albeit somewhat late in the day, but I suppose it’s taken that time for people to start getting over long term injuries and so on.

    Can we keep it going? Looking forward to a balmy evening in South West london.

  8. Anonymous

    Also going on Wednesday. Hoping it’ll be warm enough to break out my replica Ivanovic Serbia shirt but perhaps that’s a bit optimistic for the evening. But if you see a replica Ivanovic shirt … that’s (most probably) me.

    I just voted for him for PotY too, mostly because he won’t win and I felt sorry for him. Drogba played well last weekend so presumably he’ll win. Probably ought to have voted Big Pete who has had a really excellent season, but I like giving defenders credit.

    I was feeling more sympathetic to the Gooners until a few weeks ago when Van Persie mouthed off about how all those teams who spent so much more money than Arsenal were “below them” and “doing less well.” A moment’s reflection might make one consider that you can’t actually do much less well than the Arse over the past six years of pursuing the Methode Arseneoise — but then of course we all know that Arse-speak involves claiming that you’re better than everyone simply by virtue of being Arsenal, never mind things like results and trophies etc.

    On the other hand one shouldn’t judge a whole team by the mouth of its most annoying (okay, second-most annoying: Bendtner appears to be in a league of his own) member.

    Does anyone remember Carlo’s press conference the other day when he said something about the plan to use youth team players at the beginning of the season, and then commented — apparently as evidence that things hadn’t gone to plan this year — something like “and next year we are in the same situation”? I read about it in the papers but didn’t see enough detail to get a handle on what he meant. Was he effectively admitting that they were wrong not to use the youth players? Or that the youth players turned out not to be ready? Or that next year they won’t get used either?

    It seemed a curious thing to make direct reference to. The context of the discussion was definitely (according to the paper) to do with everything that had gone wrong, his own imminent sacking, etc.

  9. Anonymous

    I don’t know where I sit on Drogba. It has little to do with his personal virtues and more to do with the direction of the team.

    Under Abramovich the selling of players happens only when they are clearly not good enough or obviously spent. This leads to a situation where your marquee players may cross their sell-by date and have bad seasons.

    The calculation is not do we want to keep player X, but what are the merits of player X vs. replacement player Z over the next year and mid-term future in respect to the direction of the team. That the team has been struggling for an identity post-Mourinho hasn’t helped things at all. It makes purchasing players very difficult. You want players who are not only good, but fit a certain need.

    I have a hard time determining what our needs are. Ramires and Luiz seem to be solid and worth building a team on. I really hope Sturridge comes good. I figure we keep Ashley as long as we can, because finding Cole/Evra quality left backs is nigh impossible. Mikel is young and has a place in my heart, and in the midfield.

    But Drogba, Essien, Anelka, Malouda, Frank, Terry, Yuri- should they stay or go? Bosingwa needs to go, but how does a new RB fit into the equation of the back line? Or do we make do with Terry, Alex, Ivanovic and Luiz to rotate through the three spots? I’m actually for keeping Anelka, because he’s suggested that he is happy to sit on the bench, and he’d be an amazing player to have as your fourth striker.

    But Drogba- his presence in the team determines the shape of the tactics and the midfield. So we need a manager and a plan, not just “make these pieces fit”. Then you can decide whether we keep him. How he plays over the next few games doesn’t determine that. If he plays poorly he goes, but if he plays well then that means his transfer value stays high.

    • NorthernVA

      The Anelka which you want to keep is that the same fella who refused to shake Carlo’s hand after being subbed out against United. The same individual who walked off the pitch as if we were trying to waist time and weren’t chasing a game. Let’s not even get into the man’s penalties. If we are playing the let’s purge our strikers game you can start here first for me. Don’t really give a shit how many he bagged against the Danish or Slovakian champs.

      Drogba, Essien, Terry, Frank? Should they go? Maybe if we want to contend for absolutely nothing for the next few seasons. That’s the direction we would head if this were to occur. Our board has made some shocking moves beginning with starting the season with 19 players and continuing with Ray’s disgraceful firing but even they are too foolish this right? If we do have a new manager, and I hope we do not, do we really want to kneecap them in the same manner our board just did our last?

      I disagree with the premise that transfer policy has little to do with personal virtues. Tell that to United, Barcelona, or AC Milan. These clubs have a core culture. That was not achieved buy completely throwing away their most winning generation of players in one fell swoop. I know you are not saying this but I have seen this argument before. Some actually advocate throwing out these champions for some unproven youngsters who have earned nothing higher than over inflated ratings on FIFA or Football Manager and who probably think Cobham is a tasty salad. We need these players to show the youth what it means to be a professional and champion.

      If we are serious about bringing our kids through this is all the more the reason we should keep this players around. The kids in our youth system look up to these players. When Borini scored that free kick a couple of weeks ago he hailed one of the folks on the online chopping block, Drogba. He apparently uses the same side foot style as Didier and thanked him for the extra work he would put in assisting him polish his technique. The young man closed with saying he was sure that the elder club statesman would be proud. I must say that it is great to see one our youngsters saluting those that have set the table for them. Can we please keep the kid?

      Ask yourself do you want to be Arsenal a squad who is simply told by the press and their manager that they are continually on the precipice of greatness. Our do we want to continue pushing United a squad which have passed down the virtues and qualities that separate it from the pack. Yes the spend as much as anyone else however the core of Giggs, Scholes, and until this season Neville have been ever present. Transition is something which must be carefully laid out not done in a fit of rage after a loss in a corrupt cup competition. Experience and youth are not mutually exclusive principles when attempting to sustain success.

      I’m not a religious man however I do believe in Karma. I can’t help but think this season is nothing more than payback for the shoddy way we have treated some of the contributors of our past success. I hope we don’t make the same mistake again this summer. As Grocer Jack stated the very definition of madness is doing the same thing again and again and expecting a different result. My apologies sir if I have butchered that interpretation however I have knocked a few back. Hopefully this made some sense sorry if I went off in tangents I just had to get some things off my chest.

  10. Anonymous


    Please understand that I’m not suggesting we ship the entire lot of them out. Just that I think every player should be evaluated… but that evaluation requires some sort of coherent plan. Otherwise there is no structure to the policy on players.

    I do want the youngsters to come through. But even with a small squad we haven’t seen much of them at all this year. Now, perhaps it will just take another year and they will develop. Perhaps the majority of them aren’t good enough. I’m expecting, however, that new purchases will make up at least 50% of the player turnover. We haven’t seen evidence of a “golden generation” in the academy yet. I hope we do, but so far not yet.

    I’ve seen good arguments that say Drogba will last much longer than most strikers, because he doesn’t rely on pace the same way other strikers do. He can still be a serious force as long as he stays healthy. I’m inclined to believe it.

    Anyway, Anelka has been a model prisoner. When you see what he did to Ray Domenech, one handshake does not a crisis make.

  11. Anonymous

    Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp says he has not spoken to Chelsea about the prospect of becoming their new manager.

    Where is this coming from ? Harry?????

    • Anonymous

      I wouldn’t try to give any credibility to anything you read in the media now as the Great Summer Transfer Madness Made-Up Bollocks has kicked off early this year at an already impressively outlandish level. As I pointed out recently we’ve already had :

      “Terry to Join Spurs in Summer” and “Abramovich To Sell Torres” and it’s still only April.

      How feverishly crazy will the headlines be by August?

      @ Der Kaiser – give it time 😉

  12. Ososdeoro

    The team performed well on Saturday, with Lampard having his best game since he returned, at least once he took his free kick that was really close. The goal we gave up was a screwup by all three of Luiz, Terry and Ivano, but things happen. Cole was constantly left unmarked when he made runs into the left corner, because WBA were concentrating more on Drogba and Malouda. That’s something we probably won’t see much of again this season. Drogba was completely immersed in the game mentally and physically. I’m more and more convinced that (a) he doesn’t really have a problem with Torres; and (b) it took him a long time to recover from his illness. I think he’s a keeper for another season. Kalou’s shot was loverly.

    Despite no Ramires the midfield controlled the game overall.

    As for my candidates for roster changes, I’ve really seen very little from our Frenchmen this year. If we’re going to spend up this year I’d like to see replacements for them. I’ll chalk up Lampard’s subpar year to injury and suggest he should stay. Terry should absolutely stay, he’s been one of the best players on the team this year (funny because last year he wasn’t even close). I haven’t seen anything from Essien either, but hope for the best.

  13. Cunningplan

    Like a Chad I’ve decided to poke my head over the wall to see what’s cooking. Well shall I temp fate? and say that I think this title race is far from over, and we’re in the mix as much as the Arse, if not more so.

    There I’ve said it, and if any of you want to get me sectioned, bring it on! 🙂

    • Ososdeoro

      Cunning, I was going to section (english for commit?) you, but then I realized there was a scoreless draw up thar in Newcastle. Neat!

      • Cunningplan

        Yes it does mean commit, and after watching the whole game, I have to say Utd looked tired, physically and mentally.

  14. John

    Bit off the point but I’m sat here watching some twat on Sky in an analysis of the RM-Barcelona game, slagging Mourinho for his tactics and saying better to lose “go down in flames” than play the way they did on Saturday. You get the idea – bow down in front of the tippy tap god and let them piss all over you rather than actually applying a bit of thought and trying to counter the way they play…thank fuck there’s someone sensible – that Guillaume whatisname – telling him he’s talking bollocks.

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