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Cech's injury

Eton Blue at the Chelsea Megastore

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You are asking a question we've all been wondering from the minute it happened. And how Wiley is still a ref after making Cech crawl off the pitch after receiving a head injury, that beggars belief also!

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I hate to speculate on this, but you get the feeling that H*nt could easily have moved out of the way.

There are few players in the world who deserve success more than Petr Cech, and few who deserve a swift kick to the bollocks more than Hunt.

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I hate to speculate on this, but you get the feeling that H*nt could easily have moved out of the way.

There are few players in the world who deserve success more than Petr Cech, and few who deserve a swift axe to the bollocks more than Hunt.

fixed it for you.

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Remember how we were made out to be the bad guys about this in the press? Incredible.

that really wound me up. Cech has one of the worst injuries ever seen, Hunt gets away with it, and Chelsea are condemned for it, unbelievable

Absolutley hated Hunt ever since

Edited by Alex
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That for me ended any doubt that an anti-chelsea agenda exists in the media...the fact we were made the bad guys when our keeper is stretchered off with a fractured skull, as well as carlo cudicini with concussion, was a disgrace...the only exception was Olly Holt in the Mirror, who I remember slagging Hunt off...to be fair to him, he hasn't forgotten either...just found this:


Edited by The Brit
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Here is what Holt wrote just after the incident...top stuff:


> 18 October 2006


> HERE'S a little multiple choice quiz question for a professional

> footballer on how he might be expected to behave in a given situation.


> A few seconds after the start of a match one Saturday evening, you see

> the world's best goalkeeper run out of his goal and gather the ball

> cleanly. You, an opposing midfielder, are still several yards away. Do

> you:


> A. Realise there is no chance of the world's best goalkeeper spilling

> the ball, change the direction of your run and jog back towards the

> half-way line.


> B.Go for the Hollywood option, carry on with your run and hurdle the

> keeper as he lies on the floor clutching the ball.


> C. Continue to run straight at the goalkeeper as he lies on the floor

> with the ball, watch your knee collide with his head and then stand

> back as he is taken to hospital with a fractured skull.


> Tough one, isn't it? A real head-scratcher. Or, in the vexed case of

> Stephen Hunt and Petr Cech, a real headbreaker.


> The best that can be said of Reading's enthusiastic midfielder, who

> hurtled into Cech in the first minute of last Saturday's clash with

> Chelsea, is that he has an exceedingly slow football brain.


> The worst is that his aggression has put Cech out of football for a

> year and may have changed the life of the goalkeeper forever.


> Cech has two metal plates in his head now as he lies in the John

> Radcliffe Infirmary in Oxford and yet football's neanderthal instinct

> seems to be to leap to Hunt's defence.


> One of the worst things about the incident is the way the apologists

> for violence in football have formulated such a preposterous defence

> for the Reading player.


> Because in their rush to defend the indefensible all they have done is

> blurred the message that what Hunt did was unacceptable and by doing

> that, they've cleared the way for it to happen again.


> The grizzled old pros with no cartilage in either knee and not a lot

> between the ears either have been trotted out to produce the usual

> garbage about the good old days.


> You know the type. The Monty Python merchants unwittingly re-enacting

> the Four Yorkshiremen sketch. "You were lucky," they say. "We used to

> dream about getting kneed in the head."


> Bob Wilson wins the prize for getting closest to that but then I

> suppose that's what you expect from a bloke who was mentor to a muppet

> who called himself Safe Hands.


> Let's get one thing straight right away. Hunt's challenge on Cech

> wasn't for a 50-50 ball. It wasn't even 60-40 against Hunt. Not 70-30

> either. Not 80-20. Not 90-10.


> Cech had it. It was 100 per cent his. It was under his control. It was

> in his possession.


> "Our momentum meant a collision was unavoidable," Hunt said. Sorry,

> pal, I know you're desperate but that's not true.


> It was totally avoidable. I'll tell you how. Just don't slam your knee

> into Cech's head. Simple. Fractured skull suddenly entirely avoidable.


> Whether Hunt meant to do it or not is another matter. Only he will

> ever know that.


> I imagine he is somewhat taken aback by quite how serious the

> consequences of his action have been to a fellow professional. Again,

> only he knows that. What is certain is that according to the laws of

> the game, he should have been sent off for the injury he inflicted on

> Cech.


> He wasn't in control of the outcome of his challenge and it endangered

> the safety of his opponent. That equals a red card.


> Luckily for Hunt, a wet lettuce called Mike Riley was in charge and

> the best he could muster was one of his thin little smiles.


> And don't listen to the people who say it couldn't have been

> deliberate because it would be professional suicide for a footballer

> to knee someone in the head.


> Those people say Hunt would never have done that because he would have

> been too worried about hurting himself.


> Well, remind me then which player got carried off on a stretcher and

> is still in hospital and which player played for 90 minutes without a

> scratch?


> Hunt may well have placed his knee in terrible danger when it collided

> with Petr Cech's head but thankfully the knee seems to have emerged

> unscathed.


> Petr Cech might be in a bit of a state but Hunt and his knee are doing

> just fine. Sighs of relief all round.

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Holt has been one of the more logical writers. He defended us after that Barca game. Martin Samuel too.


Thanks for the Holt article. This is the typical comment I recall from back then, from James Lawton:

Though Chelsea have given official backing to Mourinho's stand, it was interesting yesterday to chart a groundswell of opposition among more independent observers. The consensus was that a credible gut reaction to Hunt's unquestionably reckless move almost certainly depended on some experience of playing the game at a decent level. This, unfortunately, disqualifies Mourinho, who has been known to defend ferociously the sometimes excessive physicality of his own players, most notably Michael Essien, who, since his arrival at Stamford Bridge, has been the author of some fouls so harsh that even the blood of hardened old pros has run cold. This was particularly true of a breathtaking demolition of the former Liverpool player Dietmar Hamann in the Champions' League last season.

However, this did nothing to restrain Mourinho, who also declared: "I don't know if Petr is a Catholic, but if he is he should go to the shrine of Fatima because he is lucky to be alive. It was that bad." Away from Fatima, where a vision of Our Lady is said to have appeared to a Portuguese girl, there was rather more down-to-earth assessment.

It came from three major figures in the game, two of whom - Ian St John and John Giles - were particularly adroit performers in the cut and thrust of football in one of its most violent phases in the Sixties and the Seventies. The other was Sir Bobby Charlton. All three of them were quick to say that while the Hunt challenge was unacceptably risky to the health of both the victim Cech and himself, it bore no evidence of a deliberate attempt to inflict injury.

St John, the great striker of Liverpool and Scotland, felt particularly sure of his ground. "I think anyone who played the game seriously would have a pretty clear idea of what happened. Reading faced a big test and this was the first minute of the game. The talk in the dressing-room would inevitably have been about the need to be aggressive, to take the game to Chelsea and so of course there would be quite a bit of adrenalin flying about.

"A striker like Hunt would be right in the middle of of that. Rightly or wrongly, he thought he could put Cech under pressure but as he ran at him it was clear he got his feet wrong. In those circumstances if a striker is trying to do 'the goalkeeper' he leaves his foot in - not his knee. That is fraught with all kind of risks, especially to the striker. Mourinho said he 'dropped' his knee. Believe me, a striker does not drop his knee. That is an invitation to serious injury - a striker dropping his knee is an unnatural act."

Giles, who over 10 years played 520 times as the general of Leeds United and who won 59 caps for the Republic of Ireland, said, "The lad should not have gone for the ball, but saying that is a long way from claiming that he tried to injure the goalkeeper. Ian St John is right. When it is the intention to hurt the goalkeeper the boot goes in - not the knee. I don't know how bright Hunt is but no one playing professional football over any length of time could be so stupid as to try to use his knee in that situation. It would be a form of professional suicide. No one who ever played the game for a living would dispute this."

Charlton said, "It wasn't a good challenge and you have to feel sorry for the goalkeeper but I have to say I didn't think it showed any intention to cause injury. It was one of those unfortunate things that are always going to happen in football."

Perhaps the point stretching beyond the unwelcome crisis the incident brought to a brilliant and brave goalkeeper is that Mourinho was once again utterly subjective in his view of the game in which he wields so much power - and influence. The headlines, as he would have known they would be when he made his charges, were lurid enough. "Make him Pay" declared one. "Hunt in dock as Cech suffers a fractured skull." Last season he accused Lionel Messi, Barcelona's star teenager, of play-acting when he was felled by Chelsea full-back Asier del Horno. A more objective view was that the Argentine prodigy had been obliged to take evasive action to avoid serious injury.

At such times the casualty is generally the truth. No one would dispute the legitimacy of a coach's concern for any of his players and if Mourinho had merely said that Stephen Hunt was guilty of a "stupid" challenge no one could have complained.

But the Chelsea manager went further than that. He pushed the truth beyond its limits, as he had in the notorious Anders Frisk case, when he alleged the Swedish referee had had private talks with the Barcelona coach, Frank Rijkaard. In this case, he said that Hunt had aimed his knee at Cech's head. It was a statement guaranteed to inflame a painful situation. No matter that it didn't make sense because, after all, you had to play the game to know that.

So Hunt was 'unquestionably reckless" and his challenge was "unacceptably risky to the health of the victim". That's quite clear, then. Thanks, Mr Lawton. Ever heard of a non-sequitur? Because that's what you came up with next. Having established that Hunt was reckless (isn't that a criminal offence, when, say, behind the wheel of a car?) and took unacceptable risks with Cech's health, you utterly insanely clear him of any wrong-doing:

"no evidence of a deliberate attempt to inflict injury".

This does indeed prove that journos will write illogical, inconsistent bollox purely to stick the boot into Chelsea and Mourinho in particular. Jose has no right to pass comment on Hunt's actions because he's not played the game at 'a decent level'. And yet, correct me if I'm wrong, Lawton is a 'sports journalist' who hasn't played any sport at any level, and yet feels able to be comment on what he sees, despite, in his words, being unqualified to do so.

Oh, and Lawton should know the truth of what Jose said about Frisk and Rijkaard, because it came out in the official UEFA report:

Chelsea's resentment at their treatment by Uefa over the Anders Frisk affair intensified today after confirmation that Barcelona coach Frank Rijkaard was ordered back to his dressing room by the match official during that infamous match in the Nou Camp.

Jose Mourinho was banned for two games last week and he and Chelsea were fined for bringing the game into disrepute, after their claims that Rijkaard met Frisk in the referee's room.

The club have since accepted Frisk spoke to Rijkaard outside his room but have been adamant all along that such an approach by the Barca coach took place - a claim supported by Uefa's venue director Pascal Fratellia and today confirmed by Uefa.

The revelation will serve to further infuriate Chelsea and Mourinho who are already angry at the club being branded cheats and liars by Uefa officials in the build-up to the disciplinary hearing.

The club could also claim that there had been a cover-up of what really happened at half-time during the Champions League first leg on February 23, especially with Rijkaard having claimed he only shook Frisk's hand.

Fratellia says in his report that he personally spoke to Frisk immediately after the match. His report states: "The referee told us that he had contact with Frank Rijkaard from the pitch to the front of his dressing room door (closed). Rijkaard wished to say hello to Frisk at the beginning of the tunnel and then tried to talk to him climbing the stairs.

"Frisk told us then that he said to Rijkaard that it was not the moment or the place to speak about any match situation and instructed him when he was in front of his dressing room door (closed) to go to his dressing room."

Frisk reported a similar version of events to Uefa, but saying he could not understand some of what Rijkaard was saying. However, Fratellia's version is contradicted by Uefa officials Frits Ahlstrom and Graham Turner, who were also present for the post-match meeting with Frisk.

It is understood that Chelsea pointed out these inconsistencies at last week's disciplinary hearing in Switzerland, believing it showed that the truth of what happened was not accurately conveyed by all those involved.

Assistant manager Steve Clarke and security official Les Miles had claimed to have seen Rijkaard coming out of Frisk's room but the fact they were only given reprimands indicates the panel accepted there had been a misunderstanding over where they actually saw him.


It's scandalous that, even after the truth came out, journos still say we were in the wrong over the Frisk affair.

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It's scandalous that, even after the truth came out, journos still say we were in the wrong over the Frisk affair.

they're also still saying frisk was forced out of the game following death threats. never mind the truth about it being some silly bloody schoolkid on a forum somewhere. every time it's mentioned it's always "one of the best referees in the game forced to retire because of the actions of jose mourinho and of chelsea fans".

oh they hate us alright, there's no question about it.

Edited by stride
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