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Chelsea vs Manchester United Thread


Stewartd7

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Too much thinking ahead to the CL second leg for my linking. First things first and that thing is a massive game at the Bridge Saturday lunchtime.

Ideally we would like to be able to do what Liverpool can do and rest half their team however unlike Liverpool we didn't give up on the league back in about November time.

I can see Mikel coming in for Maka and Kalou starting however I wonder if it may be Cole that is dropped to the bench rather than Malouda. Malouda can hardly be tired and Joe looked a shadow of the player he can be last night.

Essien should also play after missing last night and I really hope it isn't at right back. I would stick with Paulo Saturday and Tuesday. AShley Cole should play to put him up against ROnaldo.

I don't think we will be seeing Drogba and Anelka up front together (unless we are chasing the game) and there is no reason why Drogba can't play both games as he can't be suffering from fatigue.

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luckily the fixtures have actually landed about as good as we could hope for. playijng tuesday, then saturday, then wednesday isnt too bad. compared to manyoo playing wednesday, saturday, tuesday. we get more days between all games. i doubt manyoo will come looking for anything other than a draw. they`ll keep it tight and hope to hit us on the break. therefore we need to play with pace all over. kalou, anelka and swp up front.

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Listening to Talksport this morning (yes, I know, but it was worth it just to hear Ray Houghton and the Liverpool fans moaning) and the question was being asked as to whether we should play a weakened team on Saturday to concentrate on the return leg as Man U are going to win the league anyway!

Bollocks, I say. They can manage three matches in a week and we need to make Utd earn it.

So let's go for it. Utd will come for a draw hoping to nick a goal on the break. It's more likely that they will rest some players than us.

I'd play:

---------------Cech

Ferreira-----Carvalho---Terry----Cole

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

----Essien------------Lampard

-----------Ballack

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

Subs: Hilario, Belletti, Alex, Kalou, Sheva

We have to win so there is no point pissing about. I don't care if we end up losing as long as we try to win.

A quote from Giles Smith's article in the Times on Monday:

Tense? How could Chelsea supporters not feel tense? Daunted, too. Here we sit on the eve of yet another encounter with our bitterest rivals in the competition that (let’s make no bones about this) really matters, and with exalted triumph or gut-wrenching defeat the only alternatives at the end of it all. Who wouldn’t be anxious?

But let’s not dwell here on the Barclays Premier League title decider against Manchester United on Saturday, and the possibility — incredible to think — that Chelsea may yet lift their third league championship in four years.

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Loz when are you leaving Catherine to move in with Paulo? He offers nothing going forward and gets skinned too often nowadays; granted Belitti is a liability too, why not throw in this new kiddy in (the one we purchased in the window) he supposed to be pretty and fast?

Can't help feeling our home record and league challenge will be distance memories come Saturday afternoon. Saying that it depends what happens to manure tonight but I feel we'll get stuffed big time.

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Why have a deep squad if you're not going to use them? I say save as many as we can for the 2nd leg against Liverpool and hope guys from the second unit step up. A couple guys looked a step slow yesterday, they need some time to rest anyway. What's worse: a tired first unit or a fresh second unit? The captains need to be out there to start this and every major game however.

-------------------------Cech

Belletti-----------Alex-----------Terry--------Bridge

-------Mikel -----------Lampard-------Ballack

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

Bench:

Hillario

Anelka

Drogba

Essien

SWP

Carvalho

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I think there are more reasons to be positive about the saturday game than negative. We have Essien back in the line up who's had the midweek off and who has been nicking in goals of late. We can afford to play Kalou up front with Anelka and SWP because Manure are going to come for a draw. Moreover we have a couple of days' advantage over them as we had game on tuesday and the return leg on wednesday while the opposite is the case with them. So I am upbeat....and what makes me more positive about it all is that after this game they have West Ham who have a very good record against them in the past few years and finally Wigan away, a team that has drawn Chelsea, Spurs, Arsenal etc and by no means are pushovers.

Winning the next two games would ensure the season was no failure, at least for me. ::Scalf::

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I'd play:

---------------Cech

Ferreira-----Carvalho---Terry----Cole

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

----Essien------------Lampard

-----------Ballack

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

Subs: Hilario, Belletti, Alex, Kalou, Sheva

1) That formation and line-up will not be used by AG this season

2) The main reason for that is we have no width, causing a few problems. Just to name one, our fullbacks we be completly vulnerable to the United wingers. This will cause them to never be able to get forward (in a game we need to attack) and therefore the momentun of the game is likely to continue being on the away side.

3) No central midfielder on the bench?

I mean, seriously, I'm glad AG is in charge and not you. icon_rolleyes.gif

I think we should/will play this way:

GK - Cech

RB - Essien

CB - Riccy

CB - JT

LB - Cole

CM - Ballack

CM - Maka

CM - Lamps

RW - Cole

ST - Drogba

LW - Kalou

Subs: Hilario (or Carlo if fit), Ferriera, Mikel, Malouda, Anelka.

This formation we are used to, we can bring Essien into the midfield if we are losing or take Maka off and put Essien into the midfield and bring a forward on.

If a defender gets injured Ferriera can come on and play anywhere along the back four (something Belleti can't do) yet he can still get forward well if he is need in a full back position (something Alex can't do.)

If we had it your way, United would probably have 70% of the possession, something we obviously can not allow them to have.

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GK - Cech

RB - Essien

CB - Riccy

CB - JT

LB - Cole

CM - Mikel

CM - Ballack

CM - Lamps

RW - SWP

ST - Drogba

LW - Kalou

Joe Cole has to be dropped as he has been really poor recently, with the exception of the 45mins against Wigan. I think Malouda will be saved for the Liverpool game so Kalou will and should come in. SWP because we need to attack and with him and Kalou on the wings that is exactly what they are going to do, they are not going to play a square pass or play keep ball they are going to try and take as many men on as they can and force the game which is what we need to do. I would like to see Essien in midfield but Ferguson will no doubt put Ronaldo down the left as Ashley Cole has him in his pocket everytime so Essien needs to take care of him. We have been talking about this game for so long now that we can't afford to forget about it because we scrapped a good result against Liverpool, we need to win this game and Liverpool has to be put on hold and give everything for this one, the League is still winable so lets try and win it!

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1) That formation and line-up will not be used by AG this season

I agree.

2) The main reason for that is we have no width, causing a few problems. Just to name one, our fullbacks we be completly vulnerable to the United wingers. This will cause them to never be able to get forward (in a game we need to attack) and therefore the momentun of the game is likely to continue being on the away side.

The fullbacks would give us width. Utd won't be looking to attack except on the counter so we can pin them back. We played that formation quite a bit last year so it's not that outlandish an idea. I do think it would probably work better with Belletti and Bridge at fullback but defensively they are not up to it.

3) No central midfielder on the bench?

I mean, seriously, I'm glad AG is in charge and not you. icon_rolleyes.gif

Why would we want another central midfielder on the bench? We will have 4 players who can cover that position on at the start. The bench is to change things if needed.

I think we should/will play this way:

GK - Cech

RB - Essien

CB - Riccy

CB - JT

LB - Cole

CM - Ballack

CM - Maka

CM - Lamps

RW - Cole

ST - Drogba

LW - Kalou

Subs: Hilario (or Carlo if fit), Ferriera, Mikel, Malouda, Anelka.

This formation we are used to, we can bring Essien into the midfield if we are losing or take Maka off and put Essien into the midfield and bring a forward on.

If a defender gets injured Ferriera can come on and play anywhere along the back four (something Belleti can't do) yet he can still get forward well if he is need in a full back position (something Alex can't do.)

If we had it your way, United would probably have 70% of the possession, something we obviously can not allow them to have.

Yeah, that formation has really led to us scoring a lot of goals recently! Drogba up on his own with no support from Kalou or Cole who are busy defending deep to help out the fullbacks whilst we are outnumbered in midfield and resort to lumping it up to Drogba. Sound familiar?

I've no idea why you think playing 4 in midfield would lead to us having no possession.

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Yeah, that formation has really led to us scoring a lot of goals recently! Drogba up on his own with no support from Kalou or Cole who are busy defending deep to help out the fullbacks whilst we are outnumbered in midfield and resort to lumping it up to Drogba. Sound familiar?

Did you just say Kalou would be too busy supporting the full backs to support Drogba? icon_eek.gif

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Yeah, that formation has really led to us scoring a lot of goals recently! Drogba up on his own with no support from Kalou or Cole who are busy defending deep to help out the fullbacks whilst we are outnumbered in midfield and resort to lumping it up to Drogba. Sound familiar?

Did you just say Kalou would be too busy supporting the full backs to support Drogba? icon_eek.gif

You may have spotted a flaw in my argument!

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Yeah, that formation has really led to us scoring a lot of goals recently! Drogba up on his own with no support from Kalou or Cole who are busy defending deep to help out the fullbacks whilst we are outnumbered in midfield and resort to lumping it up to Drogba. Sound familiar?

Did you just say Kalou would be too busy supporting the full backs to support Drogba? icon_eek.gif

You may have spotted a flaw in my argument!

May have? icon_eek.gif

icon_lol.gif

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Why have a deep squad if you're not going to use them? I say save as many as we can for the 2nd leg against Liverpool and hope guys from the second unit step up. A couple guys looked a step slow yesterday, they need some time to rest anyway. What's worse: a tired first unit or a fresh second unit? The captains need to be out there to start this and every major game however.

-------------------------Cech

Belletti-----------Alex-----------Terry--------Bridge

-------Mikel -----------Lampard-------Ballack

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

Bench:

Hillario

Anelka

Drogba

Essien

SWP

Carvalho

Replace J.Cole with Anelka, Mikel with Essien and you have a good lineup for this game but I doubt if we'll see it. The percentage play is to go with the bench and focus on the C.League. For me the Premier league is more important than the C. League so I'd go with closer to the full strength team.

I am thinking that Drogba and or Anelka needs more support up front. Its disappointing that Sheva hasn't had more of a chance this season but this probably isn't the game for us to take a chance by giving him one.

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SWP because we need to attack

If we are reliant on SWP to win the match then we really are in the sh*t.

I didn't say to win the match but having SWP on would help keep a more attacking mentality and he is probably the only natural winger we have, even though he is piss poor at it... But I think having SWP having a go at Man Utd would be better than having someone like Malouda getting it out wide and passing back.

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seriously though, it is a problem in the 4-3-3 when the wide players spend too much time tracking back. It leaves the centre forward very isolated. We saw it last night against Liverpool and tonight in the Utd game. Park & Rooney barely got over the half way line.

Sorry mate, but I completly disagree with what you say.

You said in an earlier post that our full backs will provide us with the width (thus not needing wingers). This is completly wrong, I don't quite see how our only width can be 1 player from each wing, and neither of these 2 'wingers/fullbacks' are good with the ball at their feet.

Fullbacks are not wingers. Sure they get forward just as much as the wingers do, but you'll rarely see even the most attacking fullback running with the ball at opposition fullbacks. With the addition of a natural winger it means one-twos can be played to help get through the pitch.

Playing 1 wide player will give this player no joy what so ever. It will be a 2v1 situation for the whole of the game both offensively and defensively. Imagine Ronaldo and Evra running at a lonesome Ashley Cole (or whoever) or on the other side of the pitch Giggs and Wes Brown running at our full back with perhaps the help of Rooney as he often oulls out wide.

United rely heavily on their wingers and by us just playing 1 'wide' player will result in a catastrophy for Chelsea. Imagine if Ashely Cole gets forward, who is there to cover his LB spot? No-one, he will have to single handly boss the wing against a very wing-reliant United team.

You also said you couldn't understand how playing 4 strong central midfielders would result in a loss in possession terms. My answer to this arguement is this;

1) Think about how similar these players are. You can only have so much of something good.

2) This will cause the game to be so congested in the middle of the park, resulting in a very fiece battle to win the ball (you would expect Chelsea to win the midfield battle, with 4 central midfielders). Ok, so we win the midfield battle, now what? Who's gonna be the out-ball? Cause there would need to be an out-ball cause I can't imagine one of the 4 players running at the United defence with the ball at their feet. The out-ball can't be out wide, there is no wingers except our make-shift wingers who are also fullbacks. 300.gif So the final outball has to be Drogba. icon_rolleyes.gif

Sorry for the long rant, but I truely can't see any backing in your statement.

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seriously though, it is a problem in the 4-3-3 when the wide players spend too much time tracking back. It leaves the centre forward very isolated. We saw it last night against Liverpool and tonight in the Utd game. Park & Rooney barely got over the half way line.

Sorry mate, but I completly disagree with what you say.

You said in an earlier post that our full backs will provide us with the width (thus not needing wingers). This is completly wrong, I don't quite see how our only width can be 1 player from each wing, and neither of these 2 'wingers/fullbacks' are good with the ball at their feet.

Fullbacks are not wingers. Sure they get forward just as much as the wingers do, but you'll rarely see even the most attacking fullback running with the ball at opposition fullbacks. With the addition of a natural winger it means one-twos can be played to help get through the pitch.

Playing 1 wide player will give this player no joy what so ever. It will be a 2v1 situation for the whole of the game both offensively and defensively. Imagine Ronaldo and Evra running at a lonesome Ashley Cole (or whoever) or on the other side of the pitch Giggs and Wes Brown running at our full back with perhaps the help of Rooney as he often oulls out wide.

United rely heavily on their wingers and by us just playing 1 'wide' player will result in a catastrophy for Chelsea. Imagine if Ashely Cole gets forward, who is there to cover his LB spot? No-one, he will have to single handly boss the wing against a very wing-reliant United team.

You also said you couldn't understand how playing 4 strong central midfielders would result in a loss in possession terms. My answer to this arguement is this;

1) Think about how similar these players are. You can only have so much of something good.

2) This will cause the game to be so congested in the middle of the park, resulting in a very fiece battle to win the ball (you would expect Chelsea to win the midfield battle, with 4 central midfielders). Ok, so we win the midfield battle, now what? Who's gonna be the out-ball? Cause there would need to be an out-ball cause I can't imagine one of the 4 players running at the United defence with the ball at their feet. The out-ball can't be out wide, there is no wingers except our make-shift wingers who are also fullbacks. 300.gif So the final outball has to be Drogba. icon_rolleyes.gif

Sorry for the long rant, but I truely can't see any backing in your statement.

Your argument would be fine if we had the players to play an attacking 4-4-3 formation but we clearly don't. You only have to watch the last few matches to see that all that happens is the lone striker is completely isolated. In order to combat that both wingers would have to play as close to Drogba as possible which would leave 3 in midfield and both fullbacks exposed.

Just because the fullbacks in my formation would give width it doesn't mean that the other midfielders can't interact with them. Essien is quite comfortable playing on the right and Lampard is happy on the left. Ballack in behind the strikers would have the freedom to move either way. I wouldn't say that Ballack, Lampard, Essien and Mikel are all that similar. In fact they are quite different. The only thing they have in common is that they are central midfielders. Mikel would really help us keep possession. He is very composed on the ball.

We will struggle against Utd playing 4-3-3, particularly if they come for the draw. We saw how effective they were against Barcelona last night and Barca kept the ball a hell of a lot better than we do. We need two proper strikers playing centrally on the field and that means we have to play 4-4-2. Whether that is in a diamond or not depends on how you want to play it but 1 up front won't hack it.

Having said all that we will play 4-4-3 I'm sure.

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I see where you are coming from and would agree with you about our wingers not being able to play in a 4-3-3 effectively. Perhaps it would be better to play Kalou and SWP, two very attacking players who have the pace and ball control to run at the defence whereas perhaps J Cole isn't so good at it? Klaou is a natural striker so should be no problem there.

I'm sure we will play 4-3-3 again, but I certainly hope we bring in the players next season so we can play in a way that will utilise all our midfield strength but also give us width in the way kalou has done amazingly well for us this season IMO. I'd be a great admirer of Bentley joining us.

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I see where you are coming from and would agree with you about our wingers not being able to play in a 4-3-3 effectively. Perhaps it would be better to play Kalou and SWP, two very attacking players who have the pace and ball control to run at the defence whereas perhaps J Cole isn't so good at it? Klaou is a natural striker so should be no problem there.

I'm sure we will play 4-3-3 again, but I certainly hope we bring in the players next season so we can play in a way that will utilise all our midfield strength but also give us width in the way kalou has done amazingly well for us this season IMO. I'd be a great admirer of Bentley joining us.

Not sure bout SWP tbh.....all he seems to be good at is knock it and run into the defender.....Saturday is a game where loss of possession could be vital and SWP is good at losing possession IMHO

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