Tuesday, 24 September 2013

League Cup- Chelsea 2- Swindon 0

League Cup -Chelsea 2- Swindon 0

4 words -Still in second gear

Or perhaps there is no upper gear!! *panics* *starts Zen breathing* *makes a note to self*: *CalmTFdown*

This team played like the B team indeed

This game should have been half about players laying down a marker to those currently preferred by the manager and half trying to build some real momentum as a squad in terms of both convincing performance and result. Sadly this match provided neither!

Chelsea starting lineup (4-2-3-1):

Mark Schwarzer | Ryan Bertrand, David Luiz, Gary Cahill, Cesar Azpilicueta | Marco van Ginkel, Michael Essien | Willian, Juan Mata, Kevin De Bruyne | Fernando Torres

Van Ginkel was injured earlier on and replaced by Ramires- after picking up a knee injury ( it looked nasty on slo-mo! and there are reports that he's 'done his cruciates' ) The substitute was later substituted due to an undisclosed injury (Terry was introduced and David Luiz moved into midfield)

There was a period in the first half when the axis of Fernando Torres, Juan Mata, and Ramires absolutely dominated proceedings and created two goals just between themselves. The first -a wonderful pass from Ramires letting the smallest man with the biggest chip on his shoulder ( Mata) in on the Swindon goal.

The Goalie parried the shot but Torres was on the spot and tucked home the rebound.

Five minutes later, Torres turned provider-releasing Ramires who doesn't miss often when he gets to chip a goalkeeper. Two-nil and we looked like getting plenty more.

Alas! Once Ramires left there was disorganisation in midfield and it was a catalogue of missed opportunities in front. Swindon never really threatened at the other end

Torres always looks good against the minnows, does he not? He could have had a hat trick in this match but for his poor finishing ( ..,and a few trademark hilarious Torresian moments! ) #KingOfTheMinnows


We won and are in the next round! Better than Basel init !?! Glass half full ( stay with me here! )

Your spirituality is not complete until you live a life of appreciation. You know: less cynical, more pollyanna *waves church hanky*

There has to be an upper gear for this team. Hopefully we get to see it at White Hart Lane over the weekend. Otherwise we could be at the end of a Man Utd -type shellacking ( learnt Spurs put 4 past Villa away yesterday!! )

-Essien has still got it. I really loved his driving runs through the centre

The ideal pivot may yet be Essien/Mikel but I think Mourinho'd prefer Ramires/Mikel

-Betrand can lay claim to Cole's position at LB, if only he can improve the quality of his crosses


- Mata.....well let's just say he has played better in a Chelsea shirt ( it was almost hilarious watching him try to do a Gennaro Gattuso in defensive duties with his petite frail frame! ) It is easy to blame it on the pressure of the 'Mourinho challenge' in the Press but quite a few others also had below average games too- e.g Willian, KDB

They come across like kids being forced to eat their spinach, a lot less fun!

-the transition from a defence to attack is still too slow. Hence the laboured performance in the centre

-this team doesn't score enough goals ( yet! ) They are profligate in front of goal- this was again evident today in the second half. No fluidity and making wrong decisions in the final third. Every attacking player was a culprit

But I have a feeling that things will be better against Spurs over the weekend ( I hope it does. I'm going all Morgan Freeman here- Hope is a good thing! )

Spurs are at home and I don't see them playing with 10 men behind the ball. This should open up space for our attacking players ( something we've not had or lacked the ingenuity to create all season)

The boys have to earn their spurs against Spurs

So in the words of Ronald Reagan "go out there, boys, and win one for the Gipper!"


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