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Chelsea vs Middlesbrough


coco

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Chelsea vs Middlesbrough Sun 30th 13:30

Hopefully United will drop points on Saturday to Villa, then we can really put the pressure on them with a win over Boro.

I'm not expecting Boro to get in our way, despite them being a bit of a bogey team of late, 4-1 ::Scalf::

---------------Carlo---------------

Essien----Carvalho---J/T----A.Cole

---------------Mikel---------------

--------Ballack------Lampard------

-----J.Cole--------------Kalou-----

---------------Drogba-------------

Maka rested, ready for the Fenerbache game the following Wednesday.

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I expect grant to to field in this formation:

A)---------------Carlo---------------

Beletti----Carvalho----JT-----A.Cole

--------------Essien---------------

--------Ballack------Lampard------

-----J.Cole--------------Kalou-----

---------------Drogba-------------

Bench:

Hilario

Paulo

Alex

Mikel

Malouda

Anelka

SWP

However,I would like to see this formation:

B)---------------Cech/Carlo--------------

Paulo-----Carvalho---------JT------A.Cole

--------Mikel----Lampard---Essien--------

Kalou------------------------------Malouda

--------------Drogba/Anelka----------------

(Rest:Maka,Ballack,Joe Cole)

Bench:

Hilario

Baletti

Joe Cole

Ballck

SWP

Sheva

Drogba/Anelka

Team A(2-0 win)

Team B (1-0 win)

::Scalf::

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it is very much 'points make prizes' time now - one more slip up will proabbyl spark the end of our title challenge. With that in mind I thin we need to play our strongest team in every game (barring injuries/suspensions) and so little or no squad rotation.

GIven that I would not have Malouda even in my 16 let alone first team.

Against Boro I would like us to go with

......................Cech/Carlo.............. (based on fitness)

Ferreira.............JT..........Carvalho..........Bridge

........................Makelele........................

.............Ballack................Lampard............

...Joe Cole......................................Kalou

...................Drogba.....................

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it is very much 'points make prizes' time now - one more slip up will proabbyl spark the end of our title challenge. With that in mind I thin we need to play our strongest team in every game (barring injuries/suspensions) and so little or no squad rotation.

GIven that I would not have Malouda even in my 16 let alone first team.

Against Boro I would like us to go with

......................Cech/Carlo.............. (based on fitness)

Ferreira.............JT..........Carvalho..........Bridge

........................Makelele........................

.............Ballack................Lampard............

...Joe Cole......................................Kalou

...................Drogba.....................

i wud change mikel/essien for makalele for the mid-week game C Fenerbache happy0034.gif

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I agree exactly Loz. boro have been good recently from what i've seen, and have attempted to get a passing football happening. They stopped arsenal... I'd drop Kalou and have SWP's teamwork and ferreira on the right to play downing, joe cole on the left, and the same team as against Arsenal... maka will be fine

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I'd be very interested to see how we did with a 4-4-2 from the start. But with a twist.

----------Cech/Carlo

Belletti----JT------Carvalho----Bridge

------------Mikel

----Lampard--------Ballack

------------Cole

------Anelka------Drogba

Subs: Carlo/Hilario, Alex, Essien, Kalou, Sheva

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The next 3 games will be critical. we have Boro and Wigan at home plus Citeh away. Boro and Wigan are both fighting for every point and Citeh are pretty good at home. Every game is tough but we have to win all 3 to have any chance of winning the league I think.

Meanwhile United have Villa and Arsenal at home with blackburn away. Villa have been in poor form recently so I hold out more hope of dropped points in their other 2 games. We can always hope though.

I do think we will gain some ground if we can win our next 3 games. Ideally 3 points at least would be good as we then have our destiny back in our own hands. Should be an exciting finish to the season.

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Adrian Chiles summed up Boro for me by saying they are almost safe into mid table mediocrity.

Are they quite there yet?

I think they are 12th so really whilst they still need to fight, mentally they must know they are probably safe and I don't think they will pose an undue threat to us.

Man Utd have a much tougher game against Villa and this could allow us to close the gap.

Although Villa look a bit out of form at the moment so possibly not.

A 2-0 victory to us.

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I'd be very interested to see how we did with a 4-4-2 from the start. But with a twist.

----------Cech/Carlo

Belletti----JT------Carvalho----Bridge

------------Mikel

----Lampard--------Ballack

------------Cole

------Anelka------Drogba

Subs: Carlo/Hilario, Alex, Essien, Kalou, Sheva

i dont think grant will have the balls to change the formation!

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Need to win, so we need to attack and need to score goals.

No need for 3 central midfielders - yes, we have a lot of quality there, but at this stage of the season we need goals, and score them early so that we take the pressure off ourselves.

That means Drogba and Anelka together. Anelka really looked the part for France, and we all know what Drogs did to the Arse last week, especially after Anelka came on and took the pressure off him.

.........................Carlo....................

Ferreria......Carvalho......JT..........Cole

Kalou........Essien........Lamps.......Cole

.............Drogba.........Anelka.............

Bring on Ballack/Maka/Mikel AFTER we have gone a goal up. Then we can worry about controlling the midfield.

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LATE HEALTH CHECKS AHEAD OF BORO VISIT

Avram Grant is waiting until tomorrow to find out if he can include Frank Lampard and Petr Cech in Sunday's team to face Middlesbrough.

Lampard missed today's training session with a stomach bug while Cech has been sidelined since the beginning of March with an ankle problem.

But Grant said Lampard could be back in training tomorrow, Cech is quickly improving and John Terry, who was subbed representing England on Wednesday, should be fit to lead the Blues against Middlesbrough.

'Lampard is not feeling so well and he didn't train today, hopefully he will train tomorrow so we will know more tomorrow,' said Grant.

'Cech is improving, I cannot say he is 100 per cent fit but we will know more tomorrow.

'Terry trained today; I think he will be okay,' added the Chelsea manager.

With Arsenal only one point behind us in the Barclays Premier League and Manchester United leading by five, Sunday's game could see us close the gap on the current champions.

But Grant is not only concentrating on the weekend's game and instead chooses to look forward to all the games before the end of the season.

'In the next few weeks we have a game every three days so I cannot tell you that I am only thinking about the next game, I am also thinking about the physical condition [of the players] and other aspects.

'The next games are important as well, but first we need to win Sunday.

'We look at the game against Manchester United but we can't have dropped points along the way.

'We haven't got an easy game against Middlesbrough, first we need to look at our game and not think about the other teams, but I don't think Arsenal are out of the race yet,' said Grant.

Climbing our way to second in the table has been a massive achievement for the injury stricken Chelsea side this season, but Grant doesn't want the team to lose sight of our targets now.

'We need to keep the players focused all the time but especially now as we come into the last few games.

'We did a very good job until now. We were many points behind Arsenal and now we are in front of them so we need to keep doing our job and not look at the other teams.'

In the last two games Chelsea have conceded goals from set-pieces, and Grant knows that, as this is not normal for a Blues side, we must focus on the way we handle such situations in the future.

'It [conceding from set-pieces] has only happened in the last few games except for the first game against Arsenal.

'We need to pay attention to this; we are taking care of it in training and more than this. But I cannot tell you that anyone of us like it.

'It is not that we need to improve it is that we need to be more awake.

'We conceded four goals against Tottenham from set-pieces and also on Sunday again, even though we played well and Arsenal didn't create chances. So we have to be more awake,' explained Grant.

It is this sort of attitude that gives Grant his constant desire for self-improvement, as well as the development of his squad.

'It is important to think positive in football and in life also, so we think positive, we think how to do things the right way.

'We have full confidence in our ability, we were seven or eight points behind Arsenal but we were still confident and we still remained positive, we know what we need to do to win games.

'We always speak about how to push ourselves more and more, we have done it over the last six months and we will continue with this in the next six weeks,' he added.

SOURCE

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Pressure games from now on which could mean caution but if Man Yooo drop points tomorrow, then its entirely up to us to make more progress and no excuses will be accepted if we make a balls of this.

I can see them dropping points at some stage , hopefully an injury or too and they have tough games away to Arsenal, Blackburn and ourselves .

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....................carlo

essien.........percy...Jt...Cole

...................Mikel

.............Ballack.....Lampard

...J Cole..........................Kalou

..................Drogs

keeping maka and lamps an cech fit for the CL game, but still fielding a strong team

bench

Hilario

Alex

Anelka

SWP

Belleti or Malouda

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Need to win, so we need to attack and need to score goals.

No need for 3 central midfielders - yes, we have a lot of quality there, but at this stage of the season we need goals, and score them early so that we take the pressure off ourselves.

That means Drogba and Anelka together. Anelka really looked the part for France, and we all know what Drogs did to the Arse last week, especially after Anelka came on and took the pressure off him.

.........................Carlo....................

Ferreria......Carvalho......JT..........Cole

Kalou........Essien........Lamps.......Cole

.............Drogba.........Anelka.............

Bring on Ballack/Maka/Mikel AFTER we have gone a goal up. Then we can worry about controlling the midfield.[/

I like that I would like to see Joe playing in the hole 4.3.3.1.2. S.W.P. for kalou 4 0 Chelsea ::Scalf::

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This really is must win, here's the team I'd like to see us play:

Cech (if fit)

Beletti

JT

Riccy C

Bridge

Lampard

Essien

Ballack

Joe Cole

Drogba

Anelka

Subs: Carlo, Alex, Maka, Kalou, Sheva.

After watching the Chelsea v Arsenal game and the France game in midweek I'd love to see us play Drogba and Anelka up front from the start, as he looked very good in midweek, and of course set up Didier for the winner on Sunday.

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We cant leave Kalou on the bench imo, he has the most assists this season (10).

I hope we go with...

---------------Carlo---------------

Belletti----Carvalho---J/T----A.Cole

---------------Mikel---------------

--------Ballack------Lampard------

-----J.Cole--------------Kalou-----

---------------Drogba-------------

Mikel needs games and Maka can be rested for midweek.

We need to stick with Belletti/J.Cole down the right and A.Cole/Kalou down the left. I like Kalou and Joey switching wings regularly, it really confuses markers.

Can switch to 4-4-2 with Mikel< Anelka> if we need goals.

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