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Some semblance of normalcy required...


Butch

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The press and opposing fans are having a field day. Just imagine, the Champions of England for the past two seasons; all the money in the world at their disposal; how the heck can anyone compete? Oh, they might self-destruct you say? Interesting.

It's all been kind of a downhill sled ride of late. Players off-form. Key injuries. Bad luck. Don't kick a man when he's down they say, but heck, if it's Chelsea it's a free-for-all! Let's keep them down there!

Surely, there's no smoke without fire. Too much has been said already. It's unsettling for the players and fans alike. The club need to knuckle down, round up the wagons, and get back to football.

We've come through a tough period still within striking distance of the current league leaders. Things could have been a lot worse, and could yet be if we're not careful. As things stand, I think we'll have to consider ourselves lucky. At the same time, we also need to address some key issues to give us the right sort of platform for the rest of the season.

Probably the biggest problem we've faced so far this season is injuries - and not just plain run-of-the-mill injuries; we've faced some pretty bad injuries to very key players. With Petr Cech and Joe Cole, two outstanding performers from last season, we've really been handicapped. With Cudicini, JT and Robben, we've been deprived of key players when we've needed them. You can't lose this caliber of player and not expect some sort of an effect. But big Petr looks like he's returning to action soon. And Robben looks like he's returning to fitness AND form. The best thing we can do is to nurse these players back to full fitness and to sign another center back (Ben Haim would be the most suitable signing from all the names that have been mentioned) to allow us to play people in their proper positions.

The second biggest problem seems to be the form of key players together with a formation that doesn't seem to bring out the best in us. You know what? I think Jose deserves a bit of trust here. I can't deny that I've hated the diamond because of how toothless we've looked playing it, but I don't think the players have played to their potential either. If Jose feels we should stick with this for now, then so be it. Again, I think injuries and poor form have played their part. If Joe Cole was fit, he and Robben would certainly put up a good case for the 4-3-3 of previous seasons. But with Joe out injuried, SWP struggling big time, and Kalou still finding his feet, not to mention Robben's stop-start season, the diamond suddenly becomes the more viable alternative.

The third problem is off-the-field issues. To be honest, I'm a little surprised by the alleged goings on "in the boardroom" at Chelsea. Roman must know that it is entirely destructive to be wanting to change things willy-nilly, e.g. new personal coach tailored to Sheva (who might possibly replace Steve Clarke), giving Arnesen powers over player transfers, etc... I still would rather believe these are purly concoctions of the idle mind, but I'm a little wary of the possibility due to the seemingly universal acceptance of these stories, plus Jose's own interviews, vague as they may be. Again, I think Jose deserves more trust, this time from the club's owner. He has done enough in his time here to be given total control over footballing matters. But whatever is happening, people need to get a grip here. This must be awfully unsettling to the manager and players.

A lot of this will be solved by time. Getting injured key players back will be like making new signings. Cech and JT in particular are part of the team's backbone. If we got those two back, our defense would be sorted. The other problems just need sound minds. We need to be pulling together in the same direction, hopefully the right one. And a run of positive results will surely make certain that everything "blows over" and some much required semblance of normalcy is attained.

Cheers,

Butch

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We were unlucky in the sense of pair injuries. That`s the most difficult when Robben and Cole are both injuried. Cech and Cudicini. JT and Boulahrouz.

Little imagination. Let`s change pairs.

Cudicini and Robben. It that crucial?? NO!!!

Cech and Cole? Difficult, but we have Cuducini and Robben.

Yes, in terms of injuries we are unlucky this season. And of course it changes our game.

"We are surviving"© Jose Mourinho

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the press are digging in on this one. strange how they all seem to have the same quotes and the same "insider/friend" giving them. any chance this is the press trying to cause trouble......

I wouldn't say that the press are trying to cause trouble. There are clearly problems at the club in terms of off the field matters and as with any organisation there are always those who are prepared to talk off the record to members of her majesty's gutter press.

This is a big story and so it's obvious the press will be all over it. It may not be as bad as has been portrayed but it has definitely gone beyond just a few hacks with their own agendas making it all up.

You have to remember too that all parties will be using the press to get their messages out - so when you read about a source close to Jose in Portugal then you can be fairly sure that he is just passing on the story that Jose wants you to hear.

There is a power struggle going on which I expect Jose to win in the short term but which he can't win in the long term.

The only good thing is that if he does go at the end of the season he will be even more driven now than before to make sure he goes with a CL and 3rd Premiership title in his back pocket.

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