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Chelsea V Barcelona (CL) Tues 20th Feb 19:45 UK


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Feels like a loss considering how little chances they created and how we hit the post twice. But considering I was expecting us to get smashed, at least we're still in the tie.

Got to say, I was not that impressed with Barca. If they'd watched any of our games recently they would have known all they had to do was press us really high and we'd gift them possession, like we did for their goal, but for the most part they let us pass it around at the back when we had the ball for spells. Their defence doesn't look that good either. I expect us to go 3-5-2 with Hazard and Morata in Spain. If we can put on a display like we did last time we were in Madrid, there's no reason why we can't win it.

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3 hours ago, mojo said:

Yesterday was the first time I saw Christiansen sh*tscared out of his pants. He was so calm and composed in all of his previous games. 

Very true but more experienced players sh*t their pants playing Suarez and Messi. I am just glad Cahill didnt play.

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Well this is were the experience comes into play and for one moment it let Christensen down. I mean, i think we can´t really complain too much, we played a rather good game and we really competed.
In previous years against big teams we just seemed to sit back and play for the counter as we did yesterday but we were able to get forward too and also hold the ball for some period and we got good chances.

a bit of a shame really how it went....   

Edited by Nevamind

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1 hour ago, Spiller86 said:

Just watched the game back. Have to say I think that it's harsh to single out Christensen for the goal as many of the pundits did tonight. It's a high risk pass but I think playing out the way we did all night Andreas has a right to expect a bit more from Fabregas. I realise fatigue is a factor but he was caught flat footed again at a crucial moment. Dave's lunge didn't help either. That said, hope the young man learns from this. It's great to see one of our own on the big stage with his best years ahead of him.

Overall I thought we were very solid. Conte's gameplan worked to a tee. I was skeptical of the false 9 given recent results but the extra movement made all the difference. 

Still in it for the away leg and how many of us thought that was a possibility two and a bit weeks ago? Barca are probably the favourites to win it all and by rights we should have beaten them tonight. Says to me the club needs to continue to have faith in Conte and his methods. A couple of extra reinforcements would do wonders. 

You are right, just watched it too. I think it was a collective mistake: Firstly Christensen, who passed a terrible pass. Then, Cesc failed to comprehend and react to the situation on time; then, Azpi simply did not need to dive, he should have stayed on his feet, waiting for Iniesta and delaying the counter. Then Moses, who stopped running back (really stupid decision) because he thought Azpi gets to the ball. And finally, Courtois that just abandoned the near post  - if you watch carefully, not only did he move too far and didn't account for Rudiger who was at the far post, but failed to react sooner. Although it has to be said, Courtois has made the least impactful mistake.

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1 hour ago, Spiller86 said:

I think you're wide of the mark here. With a striker we would have seen just as little of the ball and caused none of the issues on the counter.

Busquets would have just sat in the passing lane ahead of Morata and especially Giroud and they would have been invisible. You win 50-60% percent of aerial duels at best and with how deep we were it would have been very hard to win the second balls. 

As it was Hazard and Willian were able to use their movement and combinations to cause issues for the Barcelona defenders in a way we wouldn't have otherwise.  Different of course when we are playing high up the pitch against lesser opposition. But tonight it was the right move.

 

I didnt actually see Chelsea cause any issues, they created 0 chances and the only chance on the counter was Willian to Kante, the whole second half we was desperate for a forward. If Morata plays he then be goes in the same position as Hazard, you win more balls and you get more counter attacking opportunities, you also get your most dangerous player running at them from deep which would cause problems. The amount of times the ball bounced over Hazards head, the ball was going over his head even when we had throw ins. 

The false 9 did not do alott for the result, it was all about the quality of the defending, not many teams would have been able to defend 90mins with the constant switching of play and passing without that one moment of lapse of concentration. The false number 9 literally did very little going forward and the only chances created was Willian through himself and not the false 9.

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Ray Wilkins: "Stamford Bridge was like a morgue last night" 

He must be back on the beers, either that or it's the selective hearing that comes with being an attention seeking tosser. Quite liked him when Carlo was here but over the last few years he's been nothing short of an embarrassment and to criticise the atmosphere last night is nonsensical. 

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2 minutes ago, Ernie_blue said:

Front 3 was a joy to watch :laugh2:, 1 win in 5.

Last night it was the right call for me. Obviously doesn't work the same way when we face teams that try to do to us what we did to Barcelona last night (sit deep and counter) but as of today i'd like to see us line up excactly the same way at Camp Nou.

We were a couple of inches from being 3-0 up against Barcelona. I don't think anyone should forget that.

Edited by Sindre

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7 minutes ago, Sindre said:

Last night it was the right call for me. Obviously doesn't work the same way when we face teams that try to do to us what we did to Barcelona last night (sit deep and counter) but as of today i'd like to see us line up excactly the same way at Camp Nou.

We were a couple of inches from being 3-0 up against Barcelona. I don't think anyone should forget that.

Tbh Willian is at his best when running at defences on the counter, when he is trying to break down a defence that's when he becomes frustrating and the stop go comes in.

Conte will play the same at the Non Camp and I think we will score, it's a big pitch with a lot more space, one problem last night was we needed a forward on earlier but we normally have to wait till the 80min for a sub, looking at the stats today Pedro put in a mighty shift, basically played in a 3 man mid and had just 20 touches of the ball. 

I reckon Baka will come in for Pedro for the 2nd leg but there's some very important games to come first.

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Just now, Ernie_blue said:

I reckon Baka will come in for Pedro for the 2nd leg but there's some very important games to come first.

I certainly hope not. Pedro was incredible defensivly yesterday and although he was lacking product on offense he's levels above Bakayoko at the moment.

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2 minutes ago, Sindre said:

I certainly hope not. Pedro was incredible defensivly yesterday and although he was lacking product on offense he's levels above Bakayoko at the moment.

Probably Baka with Pedro and Fab fighting for the last spot. Just my opinion but I know f all.

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55 minutes ago, Ernie_blue said:

I didnt actually see Chelsea cause any issues, they created 0 chances and the only chance on the counter was Willian to Kante, the whole second half we was desperate for a forward. If Morata plays he then be goes in the same position as Hazard, you win more balls and you get more counter attacking opportunities, you also get your most dangerous player running at them from deep which would cause problems. The amount of times the ball bounced over Hazards head, the ball was going over his head even when we had throw ins. 

The false 9 did not do alott for the result, it was all about the quality of the defending, not many teams would have been able to defend 90mins with the constant switching of play and passing without that one moment of lapse of concentration. The false number 9 literally did very little going forward and the only chances created was Willian through himself and not the false 9.

You've said it yourself in the second period as to why we went - and stayed - with a false 9.  Our objective was to keep them from getting an away goal.  We were more potent with our chances in BOTH halves with a false 9, while also having the ability to keep 10 men behind the ball and allow our most proficient attacker to not have to worry about defensive duty.  If we went with Morata/Giroud early we would concede our defensive strength because you would be asking Hazard to move back and track defensive duties of pedro.  He cannot do that so it would be silly to ask him to.  

And once we scored we sure as hell weren't going to tinker with the team.  We had them right where we wanted them shutout at the bridge and up 1.  One silly mistake cost us an immense result, not the formation/instructions.  For what it's worth, I was here early trumpeting how stupid it was to play false 9 and have eden up top.  I will admit I was wrong on that one.  Tactically, we were the better team last night...

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3 minutes ago, TheChelsRVA said:

You've said it yourself in the second period as to why we went - and stayed - with a false 9.  Our objective was to keep them from getting an away goal.  We were more potent with our chances in BOTH halves with a false 9, while also having the ability to keep 10 men behind the ball and allow our most proficient attacker to not have to worry about defensive duty.  If we went with Morata/Giroud early we would concede our defensive strength because you would be asking Hazard to move back and track defensive duties of pedro.  He cannot do that so it would be silly to ask him to.  

And once we scored we sure as hell weren't going to tinker with the team.  We had them right where we wanted them shutout at the bridge and up 1.  One silly mistake cost us an immense result, not the formation/instructions.  For what it's worth, I was here early trumpeting how stupid it was to play false 9 and have eden up top.  I will admit I was wrong on that one.  Tactically, we were the better team last night...

How can you be potent with your chances if you don't have any? 

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1 minute ago, TheChelsRVA said:

are you saying our goal does not count as a chance?

All 3 shots was created by Willian himself outside the box, it's like saying a 30 yrs screamer is a chance.

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5 minutes ago, Ernie_blue said:

All 3 shots was created by Willian himself outside the box, it's like saying a 30 yrs screamer is a chance.

They were build up play attempts from the top of the box.  Those are chances, they aren't 30 yard bangers.  The goal itself was off a corner that found him unmarked at the top of the box.  That's a very good chance and well taken.  Took magic sure but if you're looking to walk the ball in every time to qualify as a "chance" you will find very little chances. 

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12 hours ago, The Brit said:

Just got back..,where has that chelsea been for past few months...that Conte? Look, we still have a tough task ahead but Barcelona don't look as good as Barca teams we've knocked out before...it is still possible...Christensen cocked up but he will just use it to become even more of the dogs bollox than he already is...great to hear the Bridge  rocking again too - that passion has been missing most of the season in the stands too

You make a good point, where has that Chelsea been all season? The energy, the commitment, the will to win and keep the ball out of the net. If that had been there all season, then we wouldn't be struggling for top 4, we would be comfortably 2nd at least. The players clearly love playing in the Champions League, well if they want to play in it again next season, then they need to get their act together in the league.

I think the players and manager let the lacklustre summer transfer window affect them too much. 

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