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  1. 24 points


    With the decade near its conclusion, it's worth looking back on what we've produced over the last decade before we enter the 2020s. Record (all competitions) Played: 571 Won: 332 Draw: 118 Loss: 121 Winning % = 58.14% Trophies Premier League (2009/2010) FA Cup (2009/2010) FA Cup (2011/2012) Champions League (2011/2012) Europa League (2012/2013) League Cup (2014/2015) Premier League (2014/2015) Premier League (2016/2017) FA Cup (2017/2018) Europa League (2018/2019) Trophy Breakdown Champions League = 1 Premier League = 3 FA Cup = 3 League Cup = 1 Europa League = 2 Competitions (Year-by-Year) Premier League 2009/2010 = CHAMPIONS (86 points) 2010/2011 = 2nd (71 points) 2011/2012 = 6th (64 points) 2012/2013 = 3rd (75 points) 2013/2014 = 3rd (82 points) 2014/2015 = CHAMPIONS (87 points) 2015/2016 = 10th (50 points) 2016/2017 = CHAMPIONS (93 points) 2017/2018 = 5th (70 points) 2018/2019 = 3rd (72 points) FA Cup 2009/2010 = WINNERS 2010/2011 = 4th Round 2011/2012 = WINNERS 2012/2013 = Semi Final 2013/2014 = 5th Round 2014/2015 = 4th Round 2015/2016 = Quarter Final 2016/2017 = Final 2017/2018 = WINNERS 2018/2019 = 5th Round League Cup 2009/2010 = Quarter Final 2010/2011 = 3rd Round 2011/2012 = Quarter Final 2012/2013 = Semi Final 2013/2014 = Quarter Final 2014/2015 = WINNERS 2015/2016 = 4th Round 2016/2017 = 4th Round 2017/2018 = Semi Final 2018/2019 = Final Community Shield 2010 = Runners Up 2012 = Runners Up 2015 = Runners Up 2017 = Runners Up 2018 = Runners Up Champions League 2009/2010 = Last 16 2010/2011 = Quarter Final 2011/2012 = WINNERS 2012/2013 = Group Stage 2013/2014 = Semi Final 2014/2015 = Last 16 2015/2016 = Last 16 2017/2018 = Last 16 Europa League 2012/2013 = WINNERS 2018/2019 = WINNERS UEFA Super Cup 2012 = Runners Up 2013 = Runners Up 2019 = Runners Up Club World Cup 2012 = Runners Up Coaches Carlo Ancelotti (2010-2011) = 79 (47-13-19) Andre Villas Boas (2011-2012) = 40 (19-11-10) Roberto Di Matteo (2012) = 42 (24-9-9) Rafael Benitez (2012-2013) = 48 (28-10-10) Jose Mourinho (2013-2015) = 136 (80-29-27) Guus Hiddink (2015-2016) = 27 (10-11-6) Antonio Conte (2016-2018) = 106 (69-17-20) Maurizio Sarri (2018-2019) = 63 (39-13-11) Frank Lampard (2019) = 29 (15-5-9) Captains John Terry = 2010-2017 Gary Cahill = 2017-2019 Cesar Azpilicueta = 2019 Chelsea Player of the Year 2010 = Didier Drogba 2011 = Petr Cech 2012 = Juan Mata 2013 = Juan Mata 2014 = Eden Hazard 2015 = Eden Hazard 2016 = Willian 2017 = Eden Hazard 2018 = N'Golo Kante 2019 = Eden Hazard Leading Goalscorer (all competitions) 2010 = Frank Lampard (19) 2010/2011 = Nicolas Anelka (16) 2011/2012 = Frank Lampard (16) 2012/2013 = Fernando Torres (22) 2013/2014 = Eden Hazard (17) 2014/2015 = Diego Costa (21) 2015/2016 = Diego Costa (16) 2016/2017 = Diego Costa (22) 2017/2018 = Eden Hazard (17) 2018/2019 = Eden Hazard (21) 2019/2020 = Tammy Abraham (14) Owner(s) Roman Abramovich = 2010-2019 Players (Games) Cesar Azpilicueta = 362 Eden Hazard = 352 Branislav Ivanovic = 330 Willian = 317 Gary Cahill = 290 John Terry = 284 Ramires = 251 Petr Cech = 249 David Luiz = 248 John Obi Mikel = 223 Oscar = 203 Cesc Fabregas = 198 Frank Lampard = 196 Pedro = 193 Ashley Cole = 184 Fernando Torres = 172 N'Golo Kante = 159 Thibaut Courtois = 154 Nemanja Matic = 153 Didier Drogba = 141 Juan Mata = 135 Marcos Alonso = 134 Victor Moses = 128 Diego Costa = 120 Florent Malouda = 118 Kurt Zouma = 99 Antonio Rudiger = 95 Daniel Sturridge = 89 Salomon Kalou = 85 Nicolas Anelka = 84 Andreas Christiensen = 83 Kepa Arrizabalaga = 81 Jorginho = 80 Mateo Kovacic = 78 Michael Essien = 72 Alvaro Morata = 72 Ruben Loftus-Cheek = 72 Michy Batshuayi = 71 Olivier Giroud = 70 Jose Bosingwa = 69 Andre Schurrle = 65 Ross Barkley = 61 Paulo Ferreira = 57 Ryan Bertrand = 57 Davide Zappacosta = 52 Demba Ba = 51 Emerson = 49 Alex = 48 Raul Meireles = 48 Loic Remy = 47 Callum Hudson-Odoi = 46 Tiemoue Bakayoko = 43 Yuri Zhirkov = 42 Samuel Eto'o = 35 Oriol Romeu = 33 Asmir Begovic = 33 Tammy Abraham = 30 Mason Mount = 28 Kenedy = 27 Filipe Luis = 26 Yossi Benayoun = 24 Willy Caballero = 24 Baba Rahman = 23 Danny Drinkwater = 23 Michael Ballack = 22 Joe Cole = 22 Josh McEachran = 22 Christian Pulisic = 22 Fikayo Tomori = 20 Mohamed Salah = 19 Gonzalo Higuain = 18 Ross Turnbull = 17 Nathan Ake = 17 Marko Marin = 16 Bertrand Traore = 16 Romelu Lukaku = 15 Juan Cuadrado = 15 Nathaniel Chalobah = 15 Reece James = 15 Gael Kakuta = 13 Mark Schwarzer = 12 Radamel Falcao = 12 Ethan Ampadu = 12 Deco = 10 Ricardo Carvalho = 9 Henrique Hilario = 9 Kevin De Bruyne = 9 Jeffrey Bruma = 8 Patrick Van Aanholt = 8 Charly Musonda = 7 Juliano Belletti = 6 Ola Aina = 6 Marco Van Ginkel = 4 Tomas Kalas = 4 Billy Gilmour = 4 Sam Hutchinson = 3 Lucas Piazon = 3 Fabio Borini = 2 Alexandre Pato = 2 Matt Miazga = 2 Dujon Sterling = 2 Jake Clarke-Salter = 2 Marc Guehi = 2 Jacob Mellis = 1 Lewis Baker = 1 John Swift = 1 Dominic Solanke = 1 Papy Djilobodji = 1 Kyle Scott = 1 Jeremie Boga = 1 Tino Anjorin = 1 Ian Maasten = 1 Tariq Lamptey = 1 Players (Goals) Eden Hazard = 110 Frank Lampard = 73 Diego Costa = 59 Willian = 57 Didier Drogba = 51 Fernando Torres = 45 Pedro = 42 Oscar = 38 Ramires = 34 Juan Mata = 33 Branislav Ivanovic = 31 John Terry = 30 Florent Malouda = 28 Salomon Kalou = 25 Gary Cahill = 25 Nicolas Anelka = 24 Daniel Sturridge = 24 Alvaro Morata = 24 Michy Batshuayi = 24 Cesc Fabregas = 22 Marcos Alonso = 19 Olivier Giroud = 19 Victor Moses = 18 David Luiz = 18 Demba Ba = 14 Andre Schurrle = 14 Tammy Abraham = 14 Samuel Eto'o = 12 Loic Remy = 12 Ruben Loftus-Cheek = 12 N'Golo Kante = 11 Cesar Azpilicueta = 11 Nemanja Matic = 7 Jorginho = 7 Raul Meireles = 6 Christian Pulisic = 6 Ross Barkley = 6 Callum Hudson-Odoi = 6 Gonzalo Higuain = 5 Mason Mount = 5 Kurt Zouma = 5 Michael Essien = 4 Bertrand Traore = 4 John Obi Mikel = 4 Antonio Rudiger = 4 Ashley Cole = 3 Tiemoue Bakayoko = 3 Kenedy = 3 Alex = 3 Michael Ballack = 2 Ryan Bertrand = 2 Mohamed Salah = 2 Davide Zappacosta = 2 Mateo Kovacic = 2 Reece James = 2 Joe Cole = 1 Yossi Benayoun = 1 Yuri Zhirkov = 1 Patrick Van Aanholt = 1 Jose Bosingwa = 1 Oriol Romeu = 1 Marko Marin = 1 Filipe Luis = 1 Radamel Falcao = 1 Alexandre Pato = 1 Danny Drinkwater = 1 Charly Musonda = 1 Emerson = 1 Fikayo Tomori = 1 Signings Kepa Arrizabalaga (72m) = 8/08/2018 Alvaro Morata (58m) = 21/07/2017 Christian Pulisic (57.6m) = 2/01/2019 Jorginho (51.3m) = 14/07/2018 Fernando Torres (50m) = 31/01/2011 Mateo Kovacic (40.5m) = 1/07/2019 Tiemoue Bakayoko (40m) = 15/07/2017 Danny Drinkwater (35m) = 31/08/2017 Michy Batshuayi (33.2m) = 3/07/2016 Eden Hazard (32m) = 1/07/2012 Diego Costa (32m) = 15/07/2014 N'Golo Kante (32m) = 16/07/2016 Willian (30m) = 28/08/2013 David Luiz (30m) = 31/08/2016 Antonio Rudiger (29m) = 9/07/2017 Cesc Fabregas (27m) = 13/06/2014 Juan Mata (23.5m) = 22/08/2011 Juan Cuadrado (23.3m) = 2/02/2015 Marcos Alonso (23m) = 31/08/2016 Davide Zappacosta (23m) = 31/08/2017 Pedro (21.4m) = 20/08/2015 David Luiz (21.3m) = 31/01/2011 Nemanja Matic (21m) = 15/01/2014 Oscar (19.5m) = 25/07/2012 Andre Schurrle (18.7m) = 1/07/2013 Ramires (18m) = 13/08/2010 Olivier Giroud (18m) = 31/01/2018 Emerson (17m) = 30/01/2018 Filipe Luis (15.8m) = 16/07/2014 Ross Barkley (15m) = 5/01/2018 Baba Rahman (14m) = 17/08/2015 Kurt Zouma (12.5m) = 31/01/2014 Romelu Lukaku (12m) = 18/08/2011 Raul Meireles (12m) = 31/08/2011 Mohamed Salah (11m) = 26/01/2014 Loic Remy (10.5m) = 31/08/2014 Thibaut Courtois (9m) = 26/07/2011 Marco Van Ginkel (8m) = 5/07/2013 Asmir Begovic (8m) = 13/07/2015 Lucas Piazon (7.5m) = 20/01/2012 Gary Cahill (7m) = 16/01/2012 Cesar Azpilicueta (7m) = 24/08/2012 Victor Moses (7m) = 24/08/2012 Demba Ba (7m) = 4/01/2013 Kevin De Bruyne (6.7m) = 31/01/2012 Kenedy (6.3m) = 23/08/2015 Marko Marin (6m) = 1/07/2012 Yossi Benayoun (5.5m) = 2/07/2010 Tomas Kalas (5.2m) = 7/07/2010 Oriol Romeu (5m) = 4/08/2011 Matt Miazga (3.5m) = 30/01/2016 Papy Djilobodji (2.7m) = 1/09/2015 Samuel Eto'o (2m) = 29/08/2013 Charly Musonda (1.75m) = 1/07/2012 Andreas Christiensen (Undisclosed) = 1/07/2012 Bertrand Traore (Undisclosed) = 1/07/2014 Mark Schwarzer (Free) = 9/07/2013 Didier Drogba (Free) = 25/07/2014 Willy Caballero (Free) = 1/07/2017 Robert Green (Free) = 26/07/2018
  2. 23 points

    Season's Player Ratings with NOBS on

    Season’s player ratings out of 10 using an innovative decimal system which gives me 20 available rating points. This week’s specious comparison is the Nationality of Best Suitability (NOBS) – an assessment of the nationality a player should be based on my expert assessment of his personality and my extensive knowledge of national stereotypes based on a lifetime of working with Johnny Foreigner. I’ve left out a few players so you can have a go because I’m a giver. Kepa – 7 - Bonus point for the excellence of his distribution and his undoubted bravery in taking the ball in tight situations. Never shy in making a routine save look spectacular and does not dominate his box in any way whatsoever. Will hopefully improve and could yet be a notch or two below world class. NOBS – Saudi – Exhibits a sense of entitlement often seen in the “there are no poor people in my country – insurance, what insurance” Saudi male. The women are great. “I’m not coming off the pitch, you can’t make me”. Dave – 6.5 – Lovely man, Captain in name only. Never any issue with effort and defensively sound but severely lacking in the “offensive phase” being about as useful as a wall angled at about 70 degrees. NOBS – Belgian. Bland, safe, unremarkable in every way, inoffensive, harmless, who you could accept as a son-in-law if it looked as if nothing better is on the horizon. Zappacosta – 5.5 – Made a few brief appearances and had no appreciable effect whatsoever. Limited. NOBS – Syrian. It’s the murine appearance, I’m afraid. Luiz – 6.5 – Obviously not a centre half. Not really any type of a defender or meaningful contributor to the *defensive phase”. Not a holding midfielder and not much use in any other position. Anything he has won has been in spite of him. Sprays the odd nice pass and smiles a lot. Would be a good man to have around in an orgy you’d think. NOBS – Brazilian. Everybody’s second favourite nationality. It’s the smooth facial skin like a carefully maintained mons pubis – and the teeth. Alonso – 5 – Found out this season, unfortunately. Tall. NOBS – Danish. No real defining characteristics. Tall. Kovacic – 5 – Library book of a footballer, careworn, slightly frayed, easily misplaced, forgettable. Wouldn’t get near a Mourinho midfield, lacking, as he does, any semblance of athleticism. Reminds me of an extremely poor man’s Ray Wilkins. NOBS – Any Eastern European statelet you can spell. Let him stay in your spare room while he sorts himself out and he’s still there 3 years later. Hazard – 8 – Happily I think the few wise old heads among us do know how lucky we have been to have had this diamond with us for so long. Outrageously talented, resilient, brave, imaginative and possessed of a measured intelligence, he has been a once in generation adornment to our beloved club. NOBS – Irish – Everybody’s favourite nationality. Perhaps it is the 800 years of being oppressed by less than benign imperial neighbours that has produced a nation of modest, fun, universally loved rogues. Kante – 8 – Completes our complement of two world class players. Showed his footballing intelligence by regularly excelling in a position which does not utilise his vast cannon of skills. He just gets on with it in a way that is rare in today’s pampered multi-millionaire. We are lucky to have him. Short. NOBS – Japanese – When they are not concealing cameras in toilet bowls they are actually modest, industrious, all-round good eggs. Short. Hudson Odoi – 7 – We must keep this young man or it could rival the De Bruyne/Salah worst decision in the history of sport category of which we are the reigning world champions. Just roll him the ball and let him play. NOBS – Citizen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Are you staying or leaving? We want to leave but you won’t let us. Just go for feck’s sake – sorry if we don’t look like we’ll fall apart without you. Can we just pretend to leave but really stay? Willian – 5.5 – Sorry but you are playing in the best league in the world, for one of the best clubs, treated like royalty, with a decent amount of talent, basically living the dream, yet you slope about the place looking f**king miserable you pouting stream of piss. No one likes you. NOBS – Israeli – No one likes them. Sarri – 7 – Strange man. Off the scale stubborn and clearly incapable of even listening to advice. Yet is capable of getting his message across to the players. I like him as he is clearly in touch with his death wish and has worse teeth than me, which very few do. NOBS – Russian living in Germany. Dour, joyless and somehow incapable of appreciating the break that life has given.
  3. 22 points

    Gonzalo Higuain

    Only been in England for a day and already reached more cup finals than Harry Kane.
  4. 21 points
  5. 21 points
    That would require a very huge FA Cup rule change
  6. 20 points

    Big Pete Retires

    Don't care that he's been with Arsenal last few years, he's always been and will remain CFC legend. The man won everything at the club, put his body on the line, and was pure class on and off the pitch.
  7. 19 points
    If the league gets cancelled now and Liverpool aren't crowned as trfue champions I'm not sure I will ever stop laughing.... Ever.
  8. 19 points

    Sarri - In or Out?

    So, Sarri leads us to 3rd, loses one final, then wins a European trophy, unbeaten in the competition and has the biggest Cup final win in our history. We'll done to the gaffer.
  9. 18 points
  10. 18 points
    I love that this club never accepts defeat when things are going wrong. Everything about this final was going badly for the club, our transfer ban, Hazard and Sarri's future being up in the air, an ill timed friendly in America which ended up with one of our key players picking up a serious injury, Rudiger still on crutches and Kante almost having a malfunction just before the final, and we still won the cup. The attitude to never give up has played a massive role in our success in the last decade. It's almost become our thing now.
  11. 17 points
    Scott Harris

    Sarri - In or Out?

    I hate this type of attitude. One day the trophies will dry up, and you will be begging for another League Cup, FA Cup or Europa League victory. I don't like to use the words spoilt or say people aren't proper fans of the club, but in this case, I think it's fair to say you fit both of those. To say you're not interested in winning any trophy outside of the Champions League and Premier League is so ungrateful. You're basically saying that half of what we have won in the Roman era and almost everything we won before it in our history means nothing.
  12. 17 points
    There is something magical about this photo.. Look at the pride in his eyes. It's one for the ages, no doubt.
  13. 17 points
    You're not going to watch your team in a European Final because we might lose? Shocking mentality.
  14. 16 points

    Mateo Kovačić

    Someone is still digging, I see. Gol15, do you have any idea what it takes for footballers from small countries like Croatia or Uruguay to make it the top of European football? So many more hurdles to overcome, decisions to make (which country, which offer, which path...?) vs players in more developed countries with strong leagues, a strong academy on their doorstep... It’s a fight. It requires strength of character and is character-building, which may explain in part why the teams of these smaller countries punch above their weight so much at world cups etc. To take that all for granted and describe Kovacic as a ‘reject’ or ‘average’ for not breaking into the Real midfield aged 22-23 is one of the more ridiculous comments I’ve read from you Gol15 in a v competitive field. Who was he supposed to replace exactly : Modric - one of the best midfielders of all time!? Kovacic was always a great prospect, or else he never would have made it to Inter and a starter there at 19, as Slojo says. And Real wouldn’t have bought him in the first place. That proved to be a poor career choice by Kovacic, and one incidentally made by several players from former Yugoslavia over the years - aiming too high too early on in their career. Jovic has likely just made the same mistake. I listened recently to an interview with the legendary Serbian (Yugoslav back in his playing days) midfielder Vladimir Jugovic (some similarities to Kova by the way) reflecting on his career. He left Red Star Belgrade (a phenomenal side that won the European cup (CL equivalent) in 91) and opted for Sampdoria in 92-93 rather than one of the giants. He said his time at Samp was the most enjoyable of his career and the most important for his development. why: because of the playing time. Said it would have been a mistake to move to a Juve (where he went on to become one of the greats of the 90s) or Milan too early, as he would have sat on the bench (3 foreigner limit back then made it even harder) and would never have got as good. My hope/vision for Kova is that his move to Chelsea proves to be transformative, the one that corrected that earlier mistake, rescued his career and propelled him to the greatness he may be destined for... and that Real Madrid will regret it forever. Yeah and ask Real Madrid fans if they’re glad they ‘rejected’ Kovacic. Ask Modric if he thinks he’s ‘average’. Ask Marcelo, Klopp, Guardiola.... Yo don’t have to share my hopes/vision, which may be far-fetched. You don’t have to rate him. That’s your prerogative. But as a fan of the club, why not show him a bit of respect and gratitude, if nothing else? After all, he’s giving Chelsea everything he’s got. Finally, to the powers that be: if I ever write a longer post than this, please kick me out.
  15. 16 points
    Updated version of a photograph.
  16. 16 points
  17. 16 points
    Give the man a break. We call for RLC and CHO, they did not start but were his first two subs, neither pulled up trees and with 20 minutes to go he changed his system and pulled Jorginho for Willian. He showed flexability at last and Hazard gave us a moment of magic to get a point. Wolves came to spoil the game, nothing wrong with that but we are not best withut Costa or Drogba to break down those teams. We fought first minute to last. The ball did not break for us. By United standards we should have had a pen for the handball the player kicked on to his own outstretched hand and the hazard one could easily have been given as a pen rather than free kick. Higuain was centermeters from a tap in, and on another day dave blocks their goal not deflects it in. We were unlucky. We dominated them and deserved to win and Sarri showed ambition with his changes. I thought he and the team handled the game very well and tried to the last against a fine team with a solid game plan.
  18. 16 points
  19. 15 points
    MOTM has to go to the person who okayed the 70s kit revival.
  20. 15 points
    Mauricio Pochettino leaves Tottenham as their most successful manager ever. Here are his incredible honours: 0 Premier Leagues 0 Champions Leagues 0 FA Cups 0 League Cups
  21. 15 points

    Christian Pulisic - Official

    Credit: https://twitter.com/JesseK_Edits
  22. 15 points
  23. 15 points
    Has it been a good start to the season? No. Should we be overly surprised? Not really. Let’s not play down how big a transition this season is. A lot was said about needing patients with Sarri because he was overhauling our playing style so drastically, well Lampard is overseeing a change in playing style, a squad overhaul and cultural shift in mentally to player selection. It’s a huge task he’s undertaking. This is a playing squad that lost leadership and experience in Hazard, Luiz, Cahill and replaced it with youthful promise. When Jorginho, a player who has only been here 12 months, is spoken about as a leading voice on and off the pitch that tells us a lot about the make up of this squad. We’ve got a brand new centre back pairing who need to develop an understanding. A new shape to our midfield. Youthful talents of Pulisic (let’s not forget he’s only 20 years old), Mount, Abraham being entrusted with large minutes of playing time. I’d love to see us going out and smashing Leicester 5-0 today but we’ve got to be realistic about the state of the squad and the expectations we have for it right now. It’s early days, now is not the time to judge Lampard or these players, especially those playing their first full seasons for Chelsea. Keep the faith. In Frankie we trust. KTBFFH.
  24. 15 points
    These are genuinely terrible arguments. Stéphanie Frappart has been FIFA-listed for a decade. she has been officiating in men's league football for five years. She has officiated at a World Cup, including the Final. What part of that suggests that she also has not been working her entire career for a golden opportunity? Why should a woman working throughout her career mean anything less than a man working throughout his career? The Super Cup last year was apparently refereed by Szymon Marciniak. Can either of you tell me with a straight face that you've heard of him? Did you have a problem when he was announced as the referee for this match last season? Do either of you genuinely know whether or not she is any good as a ref? Do either of you have a problem with this announcement for any reason other than Stéphanie is a woman? Why should any female referee be impeded from any match "because of what they have between their legs"? How on earth are female referees ever going to get opportunities in the men's game if it is definitively declared that "they don't have the same experience at top level"?
  25. 15 points

    Fun season ahead?

    Ok so this year we had to sit through half the fans bitching and whining all year about how much they hated Sarri, and how 3rd and a EUFA cup wasn't good enough etc etc. Now it seems like the coming season we'll have Frank back, a transfer ban and a squad full of kids. Now I'm not sure I can handle another 9 months of misery and whining, so how about we all agree to treat this season as just a good laugh, and not give a sh*t about things like league position and cups and all that? Let's pretend we're back in the 80's when we never expected anything, and a win was a surprise pleasure! Also we will probably get the added bonus os watching all the plastics f**k off to Liverpool and City! It's a win all around!
  26. 15 points

    Sarri - In or Out?

    in, but that isn't to say he's been perfect. reasons are: -he's essentially a coach. his reputation is built on that. so joining so late before the season started, and having to play thurs-sun all season, has denied him of a lot of time to really imprint his methods. despite this, we've acheived the target of going back into the champions league, and we've made two finals. -the squad is a mix of players suited to different styles, and a lot of the "best" players in the squad are past their very best (or on the turn). so even with a flatter track in terms of coaching time, this isn't the easiest set of players to mould. sarri signed one outfield player to add to this, and a further two on loan. he shouldn't be judged against most other chelsea managers under abramovich in this respect, as he has been afforded far less. -I think a lot of people have an artificially large expectation of what this squad should be doing because antonio conte is one of the four or five best managers in the world. even those who may no longer like conte may suffer a little from this. sarri is a fine coach, and the football his previous sides in particular attest to this. -I know there has been a lot of frustration about his reticence, or apparent reluctance to do so earlier, but this is actually the manager who put loftus cheek in. and he put huson-odoi in too, and had the welsh kid in ahead of cahill for a lot of the campaign as well. I'm not pretending there was no argument to do so earlier, or more, but credit where it's due here. -finally, I know a lot of people point to guardiola's first season (with others assuming the implication is that those who do are suggesting we will canter to the title next season), but I'd like make two slightly related points: a) recall pochettino and klopp's first seasons with spurs and liverpool. if you can. b) we've met our minimum target, and yet we're still supposed to sack the manager? how is starting from scratch again going to help us? guardiola must laugh himself to sleep every night thinking about how right he was to reject our advances. this is no way to run a club: allowing relations with a genuinely great manager (the calibre of which, be in no doubt, we can no longer attract) to sour to the extent we need to sack him; allowing our best player to run his contract down so we need to sell at cut price; sacking said manager too late to give the new one time to actually do any coaching or truly assess his new squad; then sacking the new guy despite his meeting minimum requirement with a hand tied behind his back, so the new guy can arrive to a club with no director of football and a two window transfer ban. for those keeping count, we've done all of the above and you are proposing we follow that up by doing the new bit in bold. In the long term sarri might not be right for us, but keeping him for now is the pragmatic thing to do.
  27. 15 points

    Sarri - In or Out?

    No pre-season No top class striker First time managing outside of Italy Top 4 finish, runners up in the League Cup and a good chance to make the Europa League Final. We also have two players from our academy in RLC and Hudson-Odoi who have basically broken into the first 11 He's made mistakes, been stubborn and been frustrating at times but has actually done a very good job to be fair to him You also have to take into account the fact that he's playing a completely different system to what this squad is used to and that takes time
  28. 15 points

    Callum Hudson-Odoi

    It looks like people are desperate for someone to blame in this scenario, but I don't really see it like that. It's just an unfortunate (and pretty rare situation) in that the player seemingly wants to leave Chelsea. Does that make CHO a snake? No. He just wants to leave. Is it the clubs fault? Not for me. He has been grown and nurtured by the club, and there is a contract offer on the table which most 18 year olds would consider a statement of intent alone at a club like Chelsea. Is it Sarri's fault? Again, not for me. We would all like to have seen him play for in the first half of the season, but he has just turned 18 and is literally breaking into the first team in front of everyone's eyes. He is now getting a respectable amount of minutes, and there is every reason to believe that if he is good enough he will take a starting place. When you consider that Hazard is likely to leave in the summer, and Pedro & Willian are in the final stages of their career, there is even more reason for him to believe their is a long term role in the starting 11 at Chelsea. On Sarri's part, he has made it clear CHO is good enough, and is in his plans. He has spelt it out in no uncertain terms. So I am not having the narrative that CHO is a snake, or that this is 'typical Chelsea' messing it up. He just wants to leave. He may regret it, he my not. But it is what it is, no need to find someone to blame. What I would say, is that Chelsea need to boss this situation. Bayern have been fairly aggressive in their persuit, and equally CHO has thrown in a transfer request days away from the close of the window. Chelsea need to make a statement that we are in charge, not CHO, and not Bayern. Personally, I would continue to play him, and refuse to sell until the summer, unless a suitable replacement can be brought in. This is the same stance we would take with Hazard if he wanted to leave in January, so I don't see why CHO should be treated any different. We will still get a substantial fee in the summer, and we can also give CHO 6 months of playing time to ensure we have given him every opportunity to consider the offer on the table from Chelsea. I am not a fan of keeping unhappy players in the camp, but this is a fairly unique situation, and one I think we need to dig our heel in on. It has been done to us many time before (Stones most recently, after he handed in a transfer request), so i would like us to show we are calling the shots on this one.
  29. 15 points
    I can't believe you started this thread...
  30. 14 points
    My plans were to be there on Sunday, my 60th birthday to cheer on the boys but alas it did not work out. Instead we're taking a cheeky 3 day trip to mexico for a little sun and fun. It pains my heart to miss a chance to see the Chels but, well, life happens. Come on you Blues!
  31. 14 points

    We've got a new Kepa

    Isn't he a bit of a tit, though?
  32. 14 points
    So good of Daniel Levy to build us a new three point lane, the old one had gone stale.
  33. 14 points
    Absolute masterclass by Frank, completely dominated practically the full 90 minites and all they had was to boot our boys. Frank f**king loves it.... Get in you beautiful blue boys.... And everyone got to see what we know, that there fans are a vile bunch of c**ts.
  34. 14 points
  35. 14 points

    Jorginho is a Blue

    He's had a full season to adapt and will hopefully only get better. His attitude is infectious.
  36. 14 points

    We've got a new Kepa

    He doesn’t have time to set up his crystal ball and consult it you know or is he just suppose to be able to see through time and space itself? Jesus f**king Christ can people not just hold their hands up anymore, say ‘great free kick that’ and get on with life?
  37. 14 points
    5 goals away to wolves is outstanding by any team, 5 goals by academy graduates is almost unthinkable. This is a massive day for Chelsea fc, hopefully it gets the recognition it deserves by the club. Also the reaction in the media will be very Interesting, imagine of this had been done by one of there darlings. Oh and still 3 more young uns to come.... Fantastic.
  38. 14 points
    We played well, especially first half, but we were always vulnerable in transition. They got the ball and bang, they were swarming all over us. We had absolutely nothing shielding the defence. It was a problem the entire pre-season and hopefully this is a wake up call for Frank. Away from home, we were way too open. It was easy for them to attack us. Right from the off. Performances, well our CBs are a concern. Rudiger walks into this team but one of the other three has to step up. Kante obviously walks back in too, for one of Jorginho or Kova. I feel Frank made a mistake with Barkley. He excelled at number 10 in the pre-season, our best player by far, he should have started there today, with Mount on the bench. I'm very surprised Mount got a start, though he looked confident. We're going to have to be patient. I really feel Callum will be the key player this season as he will give us an attacking edge. He obviously needs to sign that contract. The likes of Tammy, our CBs, Mason, Reece James when he comes in, Callum, Pulisic, we're all going to have to be very patient. We're on the start of a journey and it will take time but I'm fully signed up to the journey and I hope you all are too. We lack a commanding CB without Rudiger, we lack a top class striker but Tammy may grow into one, and we lack a midfield enforcer though I think Ethan will provide that next season. On another day the game could have gone differently but the scoreline may have done us a favour. I think it might focus everybody's minds. This is going to be a hard season and we mustn't be under any illusions. Our manager is a rookie, with only one year under his belt in the Championship. The same applies to his staff. The same applies to a few players, including Tammy and Mason today. Let's be realistic. Let's temper all our expectations. Let's embrace the journey we're on. Most importantly, have faith. Mourinho? I can't stand him. Think he took pleasure in watching us lose. He certainly has no loyalty towards Chelsea and he's going to delight in trying to apply as much pressure on us as possible. Frank is right to play the youth. Jose resents that because he's not a nurturing manager, Frank must learn to cut off all the noise. I've got a feeling most of it will be coming from Jose's mouth. Appointing Frank Lampard and playing all these kids is never going to be about the short-term. That's something Jose Mourinho will never understand. Onwards and upwards. Come on Chelsea.
  39. 14 points

    Sarri - In or Out?

    Not sure if it has been posted, but our management team, what Dons.
  40. 14 points
  41. 14 points
    Fair play to Emery. First comment he made in his interview was "congratulations to Chelsea". Showed real class there.
  42. 14 points
  43. 14 points

    Ruben Loftus-Cheek

    This one isn't on Sarri mate. He openly opposed the fixture, but had no choice but to participate. I am sure the board didn't pick the team, but I am also sure Sarri was obliged to give a certain number of big names a run out. With hindsight it's easy to say this person or that person should have been fully rested, but an injury to any player expected to start the final would have been greeted with the same response. It was a insanely stupid fixture to arrange prior to the biggest game of the season, and that's on the club not Sarri. The potential positives (staying fresh and sharp) were always going to be greatly outweighed by the potential negatives (injury to key players) and we have come a cropper, bigtime. It's not Sarri's fault though, and to try and pin blame on him is just a bit odd really...
  44. 14 points

    Sarri - In or Out?

    Is there an option to get rid of most of the players as well?
  45. 14 points
    Apparently the bench were standing on the touchline to watch the penalty shootout, and Gianfranco told them all to squat down so the fans on the bottom tier behind them could have a clear view. God I love this guy.
  46. 14 points
    Drogba would have scored twice from that cross.
  47. 14 points
    This was posted in the old Sarri thread but to be honest the article is so good it deserves it's own thread -- namely because it answers literally every thing about why Jorinho is playing the way he is and why Kante is put there: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2019/01/21/chelseas-tactical-headache-deconstructed-problems-facing-sarri/ Why isn't Sarri-ball working the way it's supposed to? Chelsea aren't playing very well. Maurizio Sarri warned everyone back in September that he felt Chelsea were a year or two behind their rivals and it looks like he had a point. Former manager Jose Mourinho summarised things nicely on a rare TV appearance over the weekend: "I'm not saying Chelsea's an easy team to play against... but it's an easy team to analyse". With that in mind, what's going wrong? How Sarri-ball works As has become all too apparent in recent weeks, Chelsea are predictable and easy to shut down. Sarri's team lineup in a 4-3-3, play a high defensive line and patiently wait for opportunities to score by passing, then passing some more, then passing even more, then passing even more than that. The whole thing is structured around a deep lying playmaker, or 'six', acting as a link between centre-backs and midfield. On either side of him are two central midfielders - 'eights' - who play from box to box and operate in the halfspaces. The wingers are instructed to move inside the pitch, full-backs play high and overlap and the striker has to be able to attack crosses, run onto through balls and link play. In defensive phases the shape can change to a 4-5-1 if the wingers do the defensive work required. The setup is very structured and depends on players who understand the tactical demands and are suited to their individual roles. Everyone knows how Chelsea play now. Marking Jorginho In the first phase of build up, everything goes through Jorginho. He acts as the link in all Chelsea's passing, dropping between the centre-backs, offering a safe diagonal pass backwards for the two eights and able to switch play from deep to an advancing full-back to get Chelsea up the pitch. All anyone need do to suss out how influential Jorginho is look at Opta passing statistics. The solution is to mark him. In teams that play a 4-2-3-1, the 10 is the obvious choice for this because of the strata that Jorginho plays in ("between the lines"). Arsenal changed their formation to a 4-4-2 diamond for the win on Saturday, with Aaron Ramsey assigned the task of following Jorginho wherever he went. Ramsey stayed close to Jorginho throughout the match, tethered to him to disrupt Chelsea's buildup play Everton were one of the teams who worked this out early (Man Utd the first) and apply their analysis successfully, having Gylfi Sigurdsson stay next to Jorginho or stand directly in his cover shadow, making a pass to him risky. Everton secured a 0-0 draw, Spurs marked Jorginho in the next match and won 3-1. Chelsea scored an average of 2.25 goals per game before the Everton match in November, and since, they've managed only 1.18 per game. Jorginho was an essential part of Sarri's Napoli team too. He allows Chelsea to maintain this shape and these passing lanes: If you remove that one link, all of Chelsea's play is forced into wide areas, as you can see from the average positions. Arsenal vs Chelsea average positions Isolate Jorginho and Chelsea's first phase of buildup is ruined. There's no way Sarri isn't wholly aware of this but why would he compromise the system and shape that brought him so success he was offered the Chelsea job in the first place? Curbing Chelsea's creativity: The arrival of Sarri was good news for David Luiz, who has become one of Chelsea's most important creative players. Centre-backs aren't usually man-marked, which means they are free to distribute the ball as they wish - Luiz's long range passing is superb. David Luiz is one of Chelsea's most important playmakers This exact pass put Pedro clean through on goal, played onside by Arsenal's left-back Sead Kolasinac. A possession-based side like Chelsea would usually depend on the creativity of the attacking midfielders to find openings, but a midfield of N'Golo Kante, Mateo Kovacic and a man-marked Jorginho needs a bit of help from someone with ideas. Luiz is perhaps the only footballer in the team prepared to hit direct, vertical passes to catch out teams defending against Chelsea's never-ending horizontal passing. The solution to this is obvious too: force Chelsea to pass the ball to their right flank, away from Marcos Alonso and Luiz, towards Cesar Azpilicueta, Antonio Rudiger and Kante, who are less artistic distributors of the ball. That's exactly what Arsenal did. Possession without penetration Opposition teams are entirely happy to let Chelsea have the ball because that's the best way to defend against them. With buildup play spoiled because Jorginho is marked and without a striker capable of causing damage, they're so predictable in the final third that teams can defend patiently behind the ball until Chelsea run out of ideas, try a shot from 20 yards or cross the ball into nobody, turning over possession. Chelsea's attacking shape leaves them vulnerable to counter-attacks, which makes sitting deep and waiting for the ball a safe option for success. Eden Hazard is best when allowed to roam from his starting position on the left of a forward three but when stationed as a false nine, doesn't see enough of the ball. When he drops deep to get involved, Chelsea are left without a player to aim crosses to in the box and his natural inclination to drift to the left side means the centre of the pitch is left vacant. And so, Chelsea work the ball wide either by choice or forced to by the defending team, reach the end of the corridor and then have no option but to pass backwards, then sideways, then backwards. Chelsea's players are being marked out of the game, which means the most creative are being neutered by the entire team's predictability. We've seen this happen to other managers in recent seasons. Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool employ the same shape as Chelsea, but move the ball through the lines more quickly and employ a more frantic forward press. It took Klopp several transfer windows and three seasons of coaching to get his side looking the way he wanted. In the days before Naby Keita and Virgil van Dijk Liverpool had similar struggles in the Premier League, with teams like Burnley sitting back, denying space and coming away with 1-0 wins. With time Sarri can construct a starting XI in his own image too but that in itself is a problem to fix - will he be given time and money to buy new players to fit a system, or does he need to change the system to fit the players? Is N'Golo Kante out of position? Kante is one of the world's great midfielders. He won the Premier League with Leicester and Chelsea as a central midfielder in a midfield two, running around the pitch with such energy and making so many tackles and interceptions that Claudio Ranieri remarked it was like there were two of him on the pitch. Sarri's midfield three fundamentally needs a player who to set the passing tempo and who is able to receive the ball in tight spaces, turn a corner and bring others into play, hence Jorginho. The two eights must be in position to link passing through the middle, cover in defence and attack the halfspaces in the final third. Kante can't play as a six so he has to be an eight. The thing is, Sarri cannot drop Kante because he is one of Chelsea's very best players. But Kante isn't the best at either of these roles... Kante can play the box-to-box role asked of him in Sarri's system but creates chances by winning turnovers and barging his way past players. Without another midfielder on the opposite side of the pitch capable of unlocking a defence and with Hazard's creativity absent due to his positioning, there's no cutting edge in the final third. This fundamentally alters the passing lanes and options for build up that Sarri wants. The 4-2-3-1 is a great counter-attack formation (Liverpool use it often this season) but Sarri wants control of the game by having possession of the ball. Switching to two sixes and a 10 doesn't suit this. Most obvious weakness is that by moving a player from six to 10, buildup play cannot go through a central pivot and instead must be shifted wide or vertically. Teams tend to defend against this shape by sitting at halfway or slightly deeper, crowding out the 10 and forcing passes out wide... sound familiar? Vertical passes often result in turnovers of possession, which means the attacking team doesn't have total control of the ball, which means a manager has less control over the outcome of a match. Sarri wants to limit variables since that's how his teams gain an advantage, never relying on the luck of a dice roll. The system is fine, the players are at fault This defeat was due to our mentality, more than anything else," said a furious Sarri in his post-match interview. "This is something I can't accept. This group of players are extremely difficult to motivate." Arsenal were quicker to close down Chelsea, and from kick-off showed more energy and aggression all over the pitch. Without maximum effort or at least a matched desire to win, tactical setups can have little effect on the outcome of a match between two groups of hugely talented players. When teams play with a high defensive line as Sarri's does, the first line of press is crucial but too often Arsenal were able to escape the attentions of Pedro, Willian and Hazard. Arsenal stayed narrow in their own half and had a striker stay wide to offer an out-ball - Sarri shouldn't have had to explain to his players how important it was to cut this pass out: When players were caught out of position others failed to react and fill the gaps. Without that burning desire to hunt and win the ball back, Sarri-ball doesn't function as it should. The attacking shape leaves the defence vulnerable in transition - if the attackers don't defend with the right intensity in the right places, the building falls down. Attackers can sometimes get away without defending if they're producing the goods at the other end but that isn't happening. Hazard is wasted as a false-nine because he can't get on the ball, and though Willian has created 59 chances this season - the third most of any player in the Premier League - only three of these have been converted (three assists) and he has only scored three goals himself. Pedro has seven goals and only one assist. Gonzalo Higuain might make a big difference to Chelsea, free up Hazard to go wide left and Willian wide right, but the problems will remain unless those forwards do the unrewarding hard work necessary to make Sarri's system work. Mourinho and Antonio Conte were only able to win things with the same group of players when in a deep, defensive counter-attack setup - the same problems with defending from the front have been there for seasons. Sarri might be exactly the coach to build a team which wins by playing truly attractive football but to do that he needs time, something Chelsea don't have a history of affording. There's no panic right now - Chelsea are fourth after all - but there are clear problems that need addressing at Stamford Bridge and it is interesting that Sarri dropped his friendly, warm media character to dress down the players after the humbling defeat to Arsenal. Chelsea lacked bite at the Emirates, Sarri has started baring his teeth.
  48. 14 points
    In regards to Sarri, lets put things into perspective In Peps first season at City, after 23 games City had won 14, drawn 4 and lost 5 This season under Sarri we have won 14, drawn 5 and lost 4 Pep had the likes of De Bruyne, Silva, Sane, Aguero and Sterling Sarri has no decent striker, an ageing Pedro and Willian. Hazard is our only top class attacker So with an inferior squad, especially in attack Sarri is actually doing better than Pep did in his first season Like I and others have said, this is going to take time to truly see Sarriball be effective. The players are still adapting and need a few new players to make it work Give him time. I'm confident that Sarri will turn us into one of the best sides in the League
  49. 14 points

    Big Pete Retires

    I still think it was the right decision at the time. Emotions aside, Petr wasn't the player he used to be either because of age or the head injury and we needed to assure Courtois he's the new number one keeper or risk losing him. Many thought he was the future of Chelsea. The difference between how both treated the club couldn't tell more about what kind of men these two are. Cech already a legend and having won everything, spent his last season on the bench and said nothing, and left with the club blessing for Arsenal. Courtois waited till the last moment to f**k us over. That's why Big Pete is a club legend and Tibaut is a twat.
  50. 14 points

    Maurizio Sarri Officially Appointed

    I am starting to find this thread a bit hard to read. There are certain people who have obviously decided they don't like Sarri, and that is of course entirely their right, but now just have absolutely nothing positive to say what so ever. It's got to the point where even the undeniably positive things are either somehow turned into negatives, or where achieved "in spite "of Sarri. I mean you could literally apply that sort of negativity to any scenario if you try hard enough, but I just find it a bit weird to want to. I guess it had just become a point scoring thing. I find both sides of the argument interesting when it is constructive though. I am personally enjoying the ride under Sarri so far and have by no means given up. I think there have been positive and negatives, but all in all we are probably about where we should be given our squad and the obvious flaws. I still think you have got to give him a season, a striker that scores goals, and then judge him come May. At the moment we are still 4th (a position I would take at the end of the season, and would have taken at the start), and are still in every competition. I am personally not finding the football boring (although I admit it hans't been mouth watering either), and am enjoying seeing a new style and ideas (despite some teething problems). It's been said before, but look at Pep and Guardiola in their first seasons for perspective, and remember their budgets in the transfer market. Basically, just cheer up and enjoy the ride!

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