Wolverhampton Wanderers 1-0 Chelsea – Newspaper Reaction, Goal Video, Match Report

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Newspaper reports

The Guardian, Stuart James : “Carlo Ancelotti claimed he was “lucky” to still be in a job before this game but good fortune only lasts so long. The Chelsea manager will do well to hold on to his position after his side suffered a humiliating defeat that exposed the brittle confidence within their ranks and the alarming depths to which the champions have fallen. Nine points behind Manchester United having played a game more, their title challenge looks to be over.”

Daily Telegraph, Jason Burt: “Against the Wolves Gold, Chelsea were the Fool’s Gold and club owner Roman Abramovich will not want to view much more of this, his millions invested in a team that appears paralysed in a disbelieving torpor unable to rouse itself and offering little but a poverty of ideas.”

Official Chelsea FC Website: “The nightmare run continues after another away defeat, this time against the league’s bottom side.”

The goal

6′ Bosingwa (og) 1-0

Aperitif

I rang my usual pub, which serves illegal satellite broadcasts, to double-check they were showing the game.

“Sorry mate, we only show games involving the top four,” came the reply.

How crushing! It’s OK if you’re a Wolves fan, their heyday was in the 50’s so they’ve had half a century to adapt to mediocrity and lowly expectations, but I’ve only had three days to adapt to life in the second tier.

I have to be honest and admit it took a lot more effort than usual to get out the house and seek a pub but I’m a true blue, have been for years and, rather like John Terry, I’m willing to dive in even though I know it’s going to be painful.

So I joined the throng at the appointed hour, a mix of individuals in these austere days with some out of work and others sure they’re about to be out of work watching Carlo, who thinks he’s lucky to still be in work, managing a team of which five or six would be out of work if it wasn’t so expensive to terminate their contracts.

Blue_MikeL requested I use a food theme. Clearly the stress is getting to Blue_MikeL and he’s now turned to comfort eating. Anyhow I’m happy to oblige.

Starters

The other day I saw a programme on TV about the mass production of chocolate Swiss rolls. It was quite fascinating. The sponge mix had to be a perfect consistency, squirted onto the conveyor belt and checked by laser to ensure it was the perfect height, fast baked, covered in chocolate filling, rolled and then smothered in the chocolate coating. Row after row after row of chocolate Swiss rolls sped down the conveyor belt. It was impressive but after a while became a bit boring since nothing new ever happened and it was all too predictable.

And oh how it was all too predictable watching Chelsea. Give away an early goal to make sure it was an uphill task, as if life isn’t hard enough, then wave after wave after wave of predictable attacks that petered out on the edge of the penalty area. Row after row of Swiss rolls.

Main Course

Six minutes in Wolves won a corner. Their corner managed to beat the first man (see it is possible) but everyone missed the ball except Bosingwa who managed to stick his leg out and poke it into our goal.

Ingredients

  • Cech Eggs – generally keeps things tight and doesn’t allow too much to pass through the back.
  • Ivanovic Pecenje – roasted meat is a great Serbian meal, and men especially enjoy eating it.
  • Cole Panettone – seems to have gone a bit dry and stale.
  • Bosingwa Souffle – collapses in a heap for no good reason.
  • Terry Meat and Two Veg – proper man food.
  • Essien Bison – this was going to be the new beef but it was just a novelty. Let’s stick with beef.
  • Ramires Spring Chicken – may grow into roast chicken.
  • Lampard Roast Chicken – a reliable dish.
  • Malouda Marmite – we hated him, we loved him, we hated him.
  • Drogba Oyster – once a pearl but now gone off and will cause severe poisoning.
  • Kalou Swill – not fit for humans.
  • Carlo Tortellini – yes I read his autobiography because I’m a devoted fan and his favourite food is tortellini. You can stuff tortellini with cheese, meat or spinach and serve it with tomato sauce, a ragu or pesto. But whatever it’s stuffed with or served with it’s still plan A, tortellini.

Afters

A meal like this hasn’t been served since Basil Fawlty tried to organise a Gourmet Night. We need Gordon Ramsey to visit us to help us restore order in the kitchen otherwise Carlo will be getting the ‘F’ word real soon… FIRED!




There are 69 comments

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  1. Benjamin

    Well based on RA’s track record the chances of us waking up in the morning and CA still being manager are extremely unlikely especially considering recent events with Wilkins.

    However I hope RA shows real strength now and sticks with Carlo until the end of the season and supports some good solid buys over the next few weeks.

    It won’t be hard to finish in the top 3/4 and secure that Champions league spot, and if everyone stops and thinks our squad is clearly without any buys good enough to do so.

    Carlo is a stunning manager, well respected in the media, achieved 12 points out of 12 vs the other 3 top sides last season and won the double.

    He is also great at winning the Champions League.

    These aren’t the markings of a manager who has only 1 tactic…

    Imagine if he did stay, the players would realise they actually had to start playing again for him, Come on any of us with the options available would have picked a side very close to the side he fielded today. It is not him it is the players, and they should be held responsible.

    RA would be viewed as a more thoughtful stable Chairman, for me this would make the club a more attractive position for a new manager if he was to join us in a few years, Pep!

    This again would improve our position and RA’s in the media.

    As long as we achieve a top 4 spot I believe the above solution would make us more attractive to players,

    Lets not forget we are still in the Champions League and are the current English Champions!

    Anyway:

    In Zola Clarke Wise! There is your support Carlo. Also you are promoted to the “in control of all aspects of the club” position!

    In Lahm (RB problem fixed)
    Cattermole (Midfield now, Cattermole/Essien/Lampard – Ramires as backup and slowly introduced to prem)

    Out: Paulo Ferreira or Bosingwa in exchange for Lahm.

    Summer Out: Kalou / Mikel (Anelka/Drogba – maybe, must show improvement!)

    • Anonymous

      Like some of that – its patently obvious the back room team is a big part of this. Carlo is spouting utter patronising bollocks now, and as the good Lord Kaiser states, dead man walking is the demeanour.

      However, if he grows a pair and mans up , he could call the boards bluff, get more control and appoint a decent number 2 and even 3. Zola for me would lift everyone in the club, especially the players, Wisey could also be a good choice. Clarke is a retrograde step for me.

      Liking Lahm as well, always said more Germans would be good. Maybe less French as they have gone right off the boil. Kalou should be sold, he’s had his chances and I reckon any of the replacement kids could be a better long term option (Studge/Borini) , do the Robben thing with PvA , phase Drogba out over this season and next, bring in Torres or similar, maybe Aguero and for good measure, Brunt and/or Dorrans from WBA to develop. Another punt for right back might be Micah Richards who might welcome the trust.

      But if he insists on being a puppet then the players will see this, take the piss, after all they get paid, respect is lost (maybe already too late) – the RW would have tainted him with many players as would meekly allowing the Clement /Emenalo team to be promoted ( which is admirable but misguided. ).

      Time to man up or walk off Carlo.

      • Anonymous

        Completely agree.

        Personally, I just can’t work out why Carlo hasn’t changed the side in recent weeks. Choosing the same old tired legs, game after game and expecting us to get a different result just looks like stupidity or madness. Playing Josh and Sturridge probably won’t improve things that much as it’s clear that this side is past it, but it will at least show the fans that Carlo has some balls and is willing to drop those who are embarrassing this club at the moment. The likes of Bosingwa, Kalou, Malouda and Didier were verging on disgraceful, in terms of their performances tonight yet when Carlo is challenged in every pre-match press conference about whether our side is too old, he keeps answering no and insisting that the team “does not need to change.”

        I know that man-mangement and the need to keep morale high and players onside plays a part in the answers he gives, but the bullshit he keeps telling us about how the squad is still good enough to win the title makes him look stupid, weak and rather pathetic. He should grow some balls and tell the truth before it’s too late because if he comes out a few days after he’s been sacked and tells us that he wanted to drop Didier all along but was too scared to do it in case he was forced out like Scolari, or that he knew the squad was too old since the summer but wasn’t given the money by Roman to buy any new players or that despite asking for his own players, the likes of Emenalo and Arnesen forced Ramires and Benayoun into his squad instead, then it’ll just come across as bitter complaints from a sacked manager.

        But what was most alarming about tonight wasn’t the lack of confidence (expected), or lack of quality (the four players mentioned above were an embarrassment to the club at times), but the lack of effort and shocking attitude of some of these players. Yet again only four players decided to go over to the away support at the end of the game (this has happened numerous times lately) but as well as that, throughout the game a number of players thought that it was acceptable to simply walk around, putting in fuck all in terms of effort. Bosingwa and Malouda have perfected the lazy nothing performance in recent weeks but to see Didier hiding for 90 minutes and struggle to break into anything approaching a sprint was extremely disappointing. We’ve all said that to see a lack of passion and commitment from the players in recent weeks has been pretty shocking but to see so many players not putting in any effort is worse. They’re not only lazy but tonight seemed to confirm that a number of them don’t even care.

        Carlo has tried his hardest to keep the players onside but his relaxed and extremely friendly relationship with the players will be his downfall. The players may respect him but they don’t fear him and when we’re in a crisis like this, Carlo has lost all ability to scare these players into returning to the performance and effort levels of last season. That’s what makes his constant refusal to drop the old stagers even more baffling.

        But in a four way sack race between Carlo, Houllier, Avram and Woy I’m pretty sure that Carlo will survive the longest. But what’s the point if he can’t manage his own side? This is not his squad or his side and even though he’s learnt how to survive under crazy owners in the past, it’s time he told Roman to back him or sack him.

  2. Gleb

    The problem with Carlo is that he depends too much on one solid system working extremely well. He’s amazing at making the said system work well, too. That’s why he’s considered a top manager. But when things go (horribly) wrong, he seems reluctant to drastically alter his/the team’s philosophy. Milan suffered from this as well. That’s why we managed to win the double last year and look so poor this season. Last year Carlo, fair play to the man, made the most out of our selection of player working within his proffered (and only) system. That made us unbeatable. But things change, a manager has to flexible, has to be a lot more ruthless in terms of breaking things apart and assembling something new out of them. Obviously, the situation inside the Club in general doesn’t help either. Too many people in control.

    I really don’t know if we have any better options now. But something drastic needs to be done. You can’t just sit on your arse and wait for a sudden glimpse of insight. I’m not sure what has to be done, though… But it seems to me, and I hope many of you will agree, that by now everyone at the club has gotten used to the crisis and doesn’t seem to care enough… It seems to be the situation really is, as Carlo says: “We just have to keep on working hard, like we have been doing all these months, and things will improve”. And that’s the mindset. “Ok, we lost. Training’s tomorrow. Gonna work as usual. Maybe next time we’ll get lucky”. I don’t see it in anybody’s eyes that they desperately want to get back to winning ways. And this kind of attitude, I’m sure you’d agree, was unthinkable during Jose’s reign. No more winning spirit. Look, it’s just… unfathomable for a club of Chelsea’s (recently acquired) stature NOT to bounce back from an unlucky defeat. Any other decent club does that. You can’t expect any other top team to actually lose (get a lucky draw) 3-4-5 games in a row. Footballers might be pricks, at least according to the likes of The Sun, but one thing the good ones have is PRIDE. So something is clearly very very very wrong, and I can’t help blaming Carlo. He’s supposed to be the man in charge and he’s completely lost it in terms of his team’s morale. And when that suffers, no one really gives two shits about formations and systems.

  3. Action

    Despite the circumstances, we need to stick with CA – there aren’t really any viable alternatives anyway, and based on his track record, he deserves the confidence of owner and should be given the chance to rebuild the squad.

    Other results weren’t too unkind to us and we’re still only a point behind the Spuds, so the CL spot is not beyond us by any means. And the chasing pack comprises Sunderland, Bolton, Newcastle, Blackburn and Stoke!

    Oh, and it could be worse – imagine being a Liverpool supporter!

  4. Anonymous

    Tried to watch the match late last night. Fell asleep at half time only to awake to see the predictable result of us going a goal down at the end.

    From last season to this, the formation hasn’t changed alot. We got rid of Ballack from the midfield. Essien had just 14 appearances last season in the EPL with 3 goals. Glaring loss of Lampard for more than 3 months resulted in a loss of about say 12-14 goals and god knows how many assists. So a simple question begging to be answered is why a formation that was made not for our attackers but the prowess of our midfield remains unchanged.

    As the season drags on well its become obvious that the players most needed to be shipped out are Bosingwa, Kalou and Ferreira. I would honestly sell Essien if we got a good bid for him. He offers little in terms of playmaking or goal scoring. Hilario can be added to the list of deadwood. Malouda I’ll take a risk and say keep. Kakuta I fear might be another of thoser juicy lemons Chelsea so love to acquire. Well a few more seasons will see the results of that conjecture pan out.

    Carlo. Carlo, Carlo.. Either you are an idiot savant or just a plain idiot. To not even stand up and ask for a decent no. 2 after Wilkins’ departure, I mean ffs it looks like Wilkins was our rain man and you another Grant in disguise. Seriously I am not advocating his sacking, but does he have the mental acumen to shuffle the formation or lineups even a bit. Sure you might argue injuries and lack of experience have really limited the players he can pick but would have playing any of our younger, hungrier players ended any worse than the results of our last 8 games. Sadly he’s panning out to be a Grant Mk. II. And as much as we would like to sack him, we’ll have to indulge him for another season or two so that CFC has some semblance of stability. No “good” manager would touch us if he was sacked this season. But knowing Roman the moment we crash out of the UCL, Carlo’s gone.

  5. Cunningplan

    I think we’re all pretty much shell shocked with our current fall from grace, lots of good and valid points from bloggers.
    I remember us proclaiming at the end of last season, and quite rightly so, that CA had buried the ghost of JM, well it appears that the grave he dug is rather shallow.

    I honestly believe now, that CA has lost the dressing room, and he doesn’t look like getting it back anytime soon, yes I agree with JD, “a deam man walking” but please no Benitez!

  6. Prodicky7777

    Bernard schuster, Guus hiddink, Rijkaard,This are some of the names I would love to see replacing our clueless italian clown,lets not complain, the ruthless sack policy is part and parcel of Chelsea FC I still cant figure out why its not being applied ,its guards against complacency,it sells papers and it has everyone gossiping around the corridors.Roman please do a Donald trump!Just fire the clueless clown.At this juncture we are better off without a manager,this clown is just waiting for the compensation dossier he knows he can’t deliver.

  7. Anonymous

    The thing is, with us in the state we’re in at the moment and the continual interference from above (see the removal of Ray), would any of the great managers left be interested? Ditto players. I’m as much to blame as anyone for banding around names, but moving to Chelsea can’t be much of an appealing thought right now, can it?

    The lack of anything resembling a Plan B is what shocks me. Habs mentioned above Carlo’s insistence to continue picking the same faltering side regardless of form and it’s puzzling. It seems apparent he has no trust for any of the kids – them appearing in the CL games when we’d already qualified proves this. Maybe we wouldn’t have done any better with them playing through this period, but I sure as hell bet they’d show more grit and determination than some of the fuckwits we’re having to endure

    It’s strange to sit and watch MOTD and see Blackburn and Newcastle toying with their opposition and think ‘I wish that was us’. We seem to have lost it big time. Question is, will it come back?

  8. Anonymous

    And a few more points.

    There’s a horrible acceptance of the ‘lassez faire’ attitude of some players. Malouda seems completely alien to us all of a sudden. Drogs is doing nothing. Anyone else think we need a complete change of personnel on Sunday? Or is the FA Cup our last chance of silverware now?

    Kalou must be shown the door. It’s a travesty he can’t hit the target from that chance last night. And it’s not the only one. He must have incriminating photos or something on Carlo to continually get picked over Studge or Kakuta, who couldn’t do any worse. Hell, my 84 year old Nan couldn’t do any worse. Stephen Hawking couldn’t do any worse.

    I now don’t care who wins the league as long as it’s not Man City. So boring to watch away from home. And Gareth Barry is utter bilge.

  9. Cunningplan

    I should imagine Sir Purplenose must be cackling in disbelief at the fact that his troop are top by being just average this season. And if they do go on to win it, which looks likely, Liverpool fans are going to be even more depressed than we are at the thought of Utd with that 19th title!

  10. FanSinceTheSixties

    What a pointless performance.

    The difference for me, between Wolves and Villa, was Jeffrey Bruma.

    He gave us the belief that things could be different and even when we went behind, there was a real determination by everyone to put it right. It’s the sort of effect that playing youth can have on an ageing squad. Didn’t Carlo do this at Milan with Pato?

    Bringing youngsters on during a piss poor game though, does nobody any good, nor does starting too many all at once.

    The most disapointing thing for me was that although Wolves did well in the first half, by closing us down and stopping us from playing out of defence, they looked knackered in the second, yet we still couldn’t get on the scoresheet.

    Even if this team started winning again, they’re going to need to be rested and what happens then? Nico looked really miffed at being brought on and quite right. If we can’t rest players when we’re at the bottom club, then when can we? Of course, they’re not bottom any more, thanks to us.

    Something’s got to change.

    Agree that attracting the right players might be difficult, even if they, and the funds, are available.

    Keep Carlo? Can’t see RA ditching him just yet [quick check with Google, just in case] but his days, or weeks, must be in single figures if the results don’t come.

    Play the youngsters? Maybe, but they need to be fed in, just one or two at a time from the start of a match, so they learn from the seniors and know that they’re trusted.

    The danger is that we stick six kids on against Ipswich then if it doesn’t work out we go back to the old guard.

    With the same old people doing the same old things you end up with the same old results.

    Fine when you’re winning, but…

    • Anonymous

      I’ve quoted this before, but I think it was Einstein who said

      ‘The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results’

      So, maybe that’s where Carlo is…he certainly has the haunted look of someone on the edge ….

  11. Anonymous

    What will it take for Carlo to realise that old heads aren’t as effective in the English game than the Italian one he’s so used to though? You need a certain mix to include younger, fitter, quicker players and there are no signs we either a) have them or b) will play them.

    It’s looking like a good job we were so good at the start of the season or we could be in huge trouble now. Liverpool-sized trouble if you like….

  12. PeteW

    Every time I see Malouda, Boswinga, Essien, Drogba or Anelka on the team sheet I wince at the moment. So stale. I don’t think they are past it or not interested, I just think they are really struggling and need a break and the team needs freshening. CA achieved something close to a miracle winning the Double last season with a squad that was on the brink of collapse and deserves the support of the club at this time of need.

    I’m personally not in the slightest bit bothered what he says in front of the press about the way things are going, he’s just very sensibly trying to keep the CRISIS headlines as muted as possible and I don’t blame him for that, but I hope he’s saying very different things behind the scenes.

    Equally, let’s put this in perspective. We have won SHITLOADS in the last few years. We have no divine right to win anything. We have no divine right to qualify for the Champions League. Frankly, I don’t give too much of a shit if we don’t cost I hate the bloody thing and think it is bad for football. We finish, sixth or seventh, some of the kids come through, Roman throws a bitof money every now and then, we have the odd good cup run, maybe rebuild for another sustained period of challenging – I can live with that, it’s still better than I knew for the first 25 years of my life.

    • Anonymous

      Fair point but aren’t you being a tad defeatist?

      Fifth in the top league is still way better than the majority of seasons I’ve supported Chelsea but now that you’ve tasted Champage you don’t really want to go back to Pomagne, do you?

    • Anonymous

      Well said, Sir! The most sensible and realistic comment we’ve had on here for a very long time and I agree with every one of your sentiments.

      The usual argument about needing to qualify for CL every year is that you don’t attract top players if you don’t. However, since Roman appears unwilling to get into stupid bidding wars with Citeh that hardly applies anymore and we need to be building gradually from within.

      I heard some media type say we’re now in our worst run since sometime in the 90s, but my trusty copy of Scott Cheshire’s book [which stops at 1991] confirms we’ve a long way to go to match two of our worst streaks in the 80s:

      82-3 : no away league win from end of December until May;

      87-8: no league win home or away from end of October until 1 solitary one in April, leading to relegation via the play-offs.

      Respect to Mark for a fine sustained food metaphor report – I think we should all get used to very thin gruel indeed for some time to come.

    • Der_Kaiser

      Agreed on the CL aspect; very much about adjusting expectations to be realistic. I’m fairly ambivalent to the whole thing (hypocritically so, of course – win the thing and I’d be grinning for months), but I doubt Roman and co. see it the same way – cash is king and with the competition for 4th more fierce than ever, slipping out of the running for more than a season would probably be a fairly critical blow to the business plan.

      Still think there is a gap between what the club apparently want (self sufficiency, youth products, great football, love from the neutrals, trophies blah de blah) and what they are prepared to invest in the thing (namely cash where necessary, time and patience with / respect for Carlo), though. All the while that remains, and the bigger the gap between us and 4th gets, the more twitchy the suits and beancounters will get.

  13. PeteW

    Jonny and Mark (loved the food analogy by the way)

    A tad defeatist? Maybe, I;m not saying I’m happy for mundanity, just that maybe we can take the foot off the gas a bit and the world won’t end.

    Agreed with JD that the CL money is important, but they’ve got to make a decision about how much they are prepared to invest for that to happen and I think that we’ve seen how little investment there’s been in the last five years. The fact CA still has a job suggests there is more realism in the board than maybe we tend to assume. Maybe.

    Every summer they do a five-year investment table: assuming our spending remains as it has been, we’ll probably be in the bottom five net spenders next August not that far away from Arsenal. (I also think Spurs’s massive spending is going to come back and bite them on the arse sooner rather than later: make note!)

    BlueBoyDave, I remember the 87-88 run vividly as my first Chelsea game was away at Watford in October 87. We won 3-0 and went second. In May, we were relegated.

    Remember also a vicious run of 8 maybe 9 successive defeats under Porterfield that ended him with him being replaced by David Webb. What’s Webby doing these days?

    • Der_Kaiser

      True enough – it’s a big maybe, no question but if they are being a tad more realistic then all the better. I’m doubtful, but only on the basis of history which might not be the ideal guide to such matters. Given that Roman pursued Carlo fairly ruthlessly for some time, he’d look a bit daft if he turfed the bloke out at the first sign of trouble, especially after last season (not that he’s that concerned about the opinion of others, I’d imagine).

      • Der_Kaiser

        Who would…?! Can’t recall where I saw it but apparently some wag on a Cardiff message board recently commented on our alleged link to Jay Bothroyd; something along the lines of “First Capello picks him and now he’s linked with Chelsea – and just when it was all going so well for the lad…”

  14. PeteW

    Weren’t Webb’s tactics to stick Cascarino and Mick Harford up front at the same time and really lump it, while also selling Graeme Le Saux? Those were the days. Ahem.

  15. Joh

    Some good points raised by our bloggers …

    1) I personally think CA has a lot to answer for … however the players are most at fault. World-Class players like Essien, Drogba etc have forgotten how to play football.

    2) Our players can no longer cross balls into the box

    3) Can any Chelsea player take a corner and get it over the first man … I mean seriously isn’t this school boy stuff or are we are training to do this i.e. near post flick ons?

    4) I really don’t think Malouda is that bad. He had our best chance against wolves. He runs (slowly) but can keep the ball and has great technique. Selling him would be a mistake.

    5) Do not sell Mikel … he is class. Young, tough, holds the ball very well. Sure he is slow, and perhaps does not have the mind to be a great DM … but a CM he could be and certainly if we play with 2 DM’s he is fine. Remember he played in almost all of our early games where we ripping teams apart and not conceding.

    6) Age issue – yes our players are old and the board is responsible for this poor squad building. CA needs 3 years to claim it’s his squad and to therefore be responsible for it.

    7) The manager – I would sack CA but with no obvious replacement we have no choice but to support him.

    Summary

    As fans, clearly our expectations need to change. I hope this is not more then a transition season (or 2) but i fear it could be a more serious decline. With Spurs and Man City improving and no sign from ManU or Arse that their top 4 consistency will falter, the future is not as “blue” as it once was.

  16. Cunningplan

    Just on a side note which may or may not be relevant to Drogs form, not so much Kalou as we know he’s basically a SWP.
    The current situation at home for those lads, with the potential for huge bloodshed, they must be worried for family and friends, and it must be playing on their minds, just a thought.

  17. Anonymous

    There are enough free hours in the lives of professional footballers for them to think about all sorts of things. If they can’t get their heads straight for 90 minutes once or twice a week then we’ve got every right to be as scathing and disappointed as we are.

    That’s not to have a go at anyones post BTW, just an observation. They train for, what, 5 hours a day max then fuck around, doing whatever multi-millionaires with all that time and income do. It’s a sorry state of affairs if we’re having to consider their minds not on it.

    Have we still not signed anyone? Jeez Roman, pull your finger out FFS.

  18. Ososdeoro

    Broken clock: correct 0.13888% of the time.
    Carlo: correct 1% of the time.

    I’d say we’re way ahead.

    Seriously, to the one who said CA should be sacked because that’s what keeps the team motivated….are you familiar with the Oakland Raiders?

    • FanSinceTheSixties

      DS makes an appearance Weds, then bags five on Thurs, shows the difference between being 21 and 31.

      Good to read that Carlo was watching and it sounds like there are a few young players ready to step up if called upon.

      Feeling strangely positive today. That thing about ‘what doesn’t kill you, only makes you stronger’, does it apply to oldish geezers and football clubs?

    • Anonymous

      Christ if thats you Moffat trying to make it hard to type your name, well done …however some of us will simply refer to you as Utter Cunt No1.

  19. Anonymous

    I see the reserves article mentions Borini scoring 5 earlier this season. What is actually happening with him? Has it been confirmed he’s off?

    Bit nervous about Sunday now they’ve sacked Keane. Players will all have something to prove. And, mainly, because we’re utter gash at the moment. Really hope the kids are involved.

    • Anonymous

      Borini is recovering from shoulder surgery and is unavailable for at least another 5 weeks.

      Worse than that, it seems certain he’ll go in the summer as contract negotiations have stalled, and the result of that is he has been ‘frozen’ out of the first team squad, presumably on the orders of Gourlay.

      How very grown up of us.

  20. Anonymous

    Mark,
    great writing and thanks a lot for following my humble request. I am afraid that what Carlo is cooking for us is not going to be eatable at all, but hopefully we end up with some porridge keeping us at least in the top for four.

  21. Anonymous

    Can’t link from my iPhone, but there’s a section on the Grauniad about possible FA Cup upsets this weekend (we’re not included as defeat to a struggling lower league side just wouldn’t be a surprise one imagines) but the section about Burnley mentions Jack Cork and how much he’s flourishing in a play-maker role. Which is exactly what we need.

    Please, whoever sorts it out, give him a chance before he’s discarded like many before him that never had a fair crack. It’s a current travesty that we continue with the same faces, give someone else a chance, that’s all I ask.

  22. PeteW

    Agreed. Cork and Mancienne are exactly at an age where they should be able to come in with fresh legs and plug a gap. They may not be world beaters, but they can hold the fort while the world beaters are struggling and the kids are strengthening. That is, as JD says, the age group we are missing – we have the players, just not at the Bridge. Really hope Carlo takes a fucking chance on Sunday cos seeing the same 12 players struggle every game is getting boring. Can’t we see some different players struggle for a change?

  23. PeteW

    Looks very likely that Borini will never play for Chelsea again. Bizarre, because we’re usually quite grown up with contract negotiations – wonder if there’s something going on that hasn’t come out yet?

  24. PeteW

    Final comment – it has to be said that Chelsea fans have been incredibly patient and understanding about this poor run. That will probably change if we lose to Ipswich, but it is to our credit. Not sure the media has noticed, but I’m sure the club has – which may help explain Carlo’s continued existence…

  25. Anonymous

    I don’t get the sense that most fans see Carlo as the obstacle. Obviously there’s the normal ratio of headsmen demanding that everyone be sacked/sold because we’re not winning everything, but there certainly isn’t the overwhelming sense of a crowd being “against” the manager the way there is up the ‘Poo or at Villa.

    I assume that’s because most people can see that the same manager and team that did exceptionally well last year are now floundering around, and it’s fairly obvious that changing the manager but not the team will not necessarily fix anything. The one thing people keep saying here is how *slow* we look: mentally and physically sluggish. That fits with the story of an ageing team, which is the fear most fans have had for a couple of years now.

    Which is a roundabout way of saying that most Chelsea fans suspected something like this was coming. No one’s saying Carlo is doing a good job at the moment, but it makes equally little sense to say that replacing him would fix the apparent problem of a team that’s run out of steam.

    One thing does seem clear: Roman’s not going to throw money at the team this January. To be honest I think that’s a good thing. It almost certainly wouldn’t help in the longer term, and there’s at least a 50% chance that it wouldn’t help in the shorter term anyway.

    Borini: I suspect he hasn’t done enough to persuade the club that he’s going to get in ahead of Studge or the generation below, especially if they’re thinking of a 4-3-3 model in which two of the front three will be nippy dazzlers like Kakuta and Gokhan Tore.

    • Anonymous

      The Borini thing is a puzzle, but the Tweeter @chelseayouth seems to have a good handle on this, and the suggestion is simply that Gourlay/RA have decided to play hardball over Borini on the contract. Borini or his agent are holding out for more cash which he would likely get at Parma or Juve for example, whereas Gourlay won’t meet the demands for an unproven player. Almost certain he will go because like Citeh with Tevez (on a much smaller scale) the club simply will not back down.

      Agreed about the rather sensible take from Chelsea fans on this….maybe the older guard viewpoint of how this is better than we remember is the prevailing influence. But having said that I’m with Fiftee and Pete on the need to dump the seniors tomorrow and try something new as we did with Zilina. And Ipswich are no Zilina so the kids should really show their mettle and worth tomorrow.

  26. Benjamin

    “For a manager, it is important at this moment to have the support of the club, of the players, and obviously of the fans – minus one,”

    Great quote from CA, for me he deserves to stay till the end of the season solely based on this 🙂

    I agree with Limetreebower that there is no rush to buy any players in January and make a silly mistake. However if Ivanovic is not available to play at RB for the rest of the season and we need him to play CB. Then we need to spend a little on a CB or RB. (Preferable a RB so Ivanovic can play CB)

    Time to contradict myself now, with Roy gone Torres must have had enough of Liverpool by now. This is the time to put in a £25m offer and get him. He won’t have the pressure on him to perform and save the club week in week out here. He will therefore be less injury prone on average and also will provide the perfect spark to produce out of nothing, as we have needed with all these recent draws.

    A great goal would do wonders for the team’s confidence.

    His presence would also disrupt team’s defences giving Drogba more time on the ball, open up the flanks for Cole and the midfield for Lamps to run into.

  27. Anonymous

    A little disappointed at Carlo for saying that Josh isn’t ready to start many games because he “can’t control the pattern of play” and prefers Essien to dictate the play from midfield.

    Hmmm…I do like Essien’s power and energy but he doesn’t really seem like a Xavi type who can control a match with his passing. And I’m not sure if Carlo has forgotten how talented some of the kids are (where has Van Aanholt been in recent months?) but he needs to be pick them soon or we’ll risk losing some.

  28. Anonymous

    It may only be Ipswich but surely Carlo can see that Josh and Sturridge deserve more starts.

    And judging by our football today, who needs Didier lumbering around up front. Yes, it’s only an FA Cup game, but this is class.

  29. Cunningplan

    Sorry guys, totally dissapointed, it was Ipswich and we only managed to score seven! Surely Carlo has to go, we should grab Hodgson now before he’s snatched up by another Premiership club.

  30. Anonymous

    Thaaaat’s better.

    All the youngsters were superb, and it can’t have been coincidence that there was so much more energy and freshness right from the start. Though admittedly Ipswich were unbelievably pathetic.

    However, interesting to see Pat Van A cramping up with ten minutes to go. He’d been haring up and down that touchline all day. Textbook example of why you have to go easyish on the young ‘uns. But yes, as Habs says, it’s hard to see any arguments against Josh starting some regular games, and while Studge was a bit flouncy when things didn’t go quite right he had some wonderful touches. (Plus he’s not even in the same Flouncing League as Didier, though give him time.)

    Also very pleased to hear the “Carlo” chant from the MH end.

  31. Anonymous

    (not cramp after all — he tore a hamstring. That must be why they don’t let me write the textbooks. Oh well, a few more months of ignorant spouting off and I might be ready for my first call to a phone-in show.)

  32. Anonymous

    Tonight when I kneel at the side of my bed to say my prayers I will thank the Lord that I wasn’t born in Ipswich and be cursed with supporting that pile of rubbish and also be more grateful for what I receive at Chelsea.

  33. Anonymous

    I’ll repeat this after the report goes up but ITV are cunts. Utter Cunts.

    The first defence from the current holders gets 4 minutes on a late night highlights programme after the first 35 minutes are dedicated to Manchester United and Manchester City games. 4 minutes of footage showing goals only and shot with the local wedding photographers video phone, that is fucking outrageous.
    Just goes to show how much the FA cares about any sort of quality control. I hope ChelseaTV Online have it tomorrow. As much as I detest Murdoch and his clan In rather wish they did buy ShiteTV and then shut the fucking lot down.

    • Austin Solari

      I agree, Tony!!! I sat up til 1137pm just to see 4 minutes of the CUP HOLDERS scoring goals. and not even a fukking mention that we are the Cup holders


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