Super Chelsea

A Chelsea Blog For All Chels

Super Chelsea - A Chelsea Blog For All Chels

Why Fernando Torres will shine under Mourinho

Fernando Torres has been coached by many world class managers at Chelsea. Ancelotti, Villas-Boas, and Di Matteo all failed to get the best out of him. While he did show some flashes of brilliance under Ancelotti, Villas-Boas, and Di Matteo it was the arrival of Rafa Benitez –hate him or dislike him -that brought more consistency from him.

Torres failed under Ancelotti because our style of play was completely different to that of Liverpool, he joined mid-season and the media pressure and scrutiny surrounding his record-breaking transfer was overwhelming. Our attacking players also made his task frustrating and difficult. Coming from a Liverpool system which relied on counter attacking and most chances falling perfectly for him (through balls and cut-back crosses), adjustment ended up being a herculean feat.

Torres came to meet a slow build-up style of football at Chelsea, which was the preferred method of attack in Ancelotti’s second year. This suited Drogba, who could be marked closely by a defender and still get a goal and not Torres cause it makes it easy for defenders to mark him out of the game.

Man-marking Drogba is an exercise in futility

 


Torres’ team mates created few chances and many of those few chances were not suited to his abilities as a striker. For example, there is little sense in lobbing the ball towards his chest and expecting him to score.

When he wasn’t getting clear chances, he tried to create his own. I would watch games and see Torres pass the ball to Kalou or Malouda and enter into good goal-scoring space expecting the return pass. Torres would never get the return pass, Kalou or Malouda would shoot for goal instead. It did not matter to them that Torres had moved to a better goal scoring position than they were in; personal glory came first for them as they were both fighting/competing heavily for a place in the team.

The situation didn’t change much under Villas-Boas, who made Chelsea play a highline defense. By doing so, Chelsea would maintain constant pressure on opposing teams and this forced them to defend deeper and counter attack. This leaves little space that can be exploited on the break and Torres performs better when such space exists.
The first half of Di Matteo’s reign was similar to Avram Grant’s reign as Chelsea manager in that he made little changes to the system but had highly motivated players who were keen to prove a point. We all know the first half of his reign ended fantastic.

The second half however brought Hazard and Oscar. These new players were able to link up well with Mata and score a lot of goals between them. They also created more chances for Torres than previous midfields had. If Di Matteo was able to create a balanced Chelsea team, maybe he would have been manager today. The team was fantastic in attack but terrible in defense which is surprising because Di Matteo brought us the FA Cup and Champions League on a foundation of solid defense. “Attack wins you games but strong defense wins you trophies”.

Torres had his best goal tally for Chelsea last season. I believe he could have easily gotten more than 23, maybe 35-40 goals if he played his old game. By old game, I mean passing to attacking midfield, running into space, receiving the return pass and scoring. However, this did not happen because Torres would often move wide of the goal when he could score more by being at center and that benefited Mata the most. I believe he moves wide to avoid being manhandled by center backs.

The reason why Torres will shine under Mourinho is because Mourinho loves counter attacking football. In 2005/06 season, Mourinho’s Chelsea scored 42% of its goals from counter attacks. 44% of goals came from slow build ups. The remainder of the goals came from set piece situations. 38% of the goals came from counter attack play of less than 10 seconds. 53% of the counter attack goals involved 3 passes or less. [Stats taken from Dick Bate, Future Game Presentation (2012)]

In the Super Cup game against Bayern Munich, Torres scored the first goal and it came from a defense-to-attack transition. When Hazard got the ball from Bayern, at that moment, a transition occurred. In order to prevent Bayern from organizing themselves making it difficult for us to score, Hazard quickly unleashed the ball to Schurrle on the right wing, who also doesn’t waste time and crosses the ball in which Torres finishes without taking a touch or thinking.


Most counter attacks that turn into goals are made with less than 6 passes and Chelsea scored against Bayern with 3. Bayern could do little about it because it took all of 5 seconds to occur. That is the type of football Mourinho likes to play.

Transitions have become crucial. When the opponent is organized defensively, it is very difficult to score. The moment the opponent loses the ball can be the time to exploit the opportunity of someone being out of position. Similarly when we lose the ball we must react immediately. In training I sometimes practice keeping a minimum of five players behind the ball, so that when we lose it we can still keep a good defensive shape. The players must learn to read the game – when to press and when to return to their defensive positions. Everybody says that set plays win most games, but I think it is more about transitions. – José Mourinho

If you still doubt Mourinho’s love for counter attacking that suits Torres, listen to him lament Chelsea’s failure to take advantage of opportunities to counter attack at Old Trafford.

That’s all I have for you Blues. Keep the blue flag flying high!
Twitter: @super_chelsea
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Europa League Final: Could Rafa Benitez lead Chelsea to glory?

When the season started, we hoped that we would be able to defend our hard-won Champions League crown. We had spent heavily in the summer on the likes of Eden Hazard, freshened up an ageing squad to some degree and looked forward to having a better chance of winning the Premier League. Sadly, the best we can hope for is the Europa League title as we’ve failed on all other fronts.

Europa League Trophy

Our rainbow after a stormy season?

Our surprising decision to sack Roberto di Matteo despite lying in second place in the league meant that we brought in Rafael Benitez as an interim replacement. After a very shaky start under the Spaniard, we have managed to stabilise and could yet end the season with a major trophy, even if it’s one none of us thought we would be challenging for.

 

A final salute

Before Benitez leaves, he knows that he’s steered us to guaranteed Champions League qualification with a game to go; but to try and make us feel a little bit better about his time at Stamford Bridge, he has to lead us to victory against Benfica. It won’t be easy, as the Portuguese giants have some class players in their squad, yet Chelsea are Europa League Betting Favourites at 7/5.

In the Europa League we’ve excelled, albeit against weak opposition. Having failed to qualify for the knockout stages of the Champions League, we’ve taken apart the likes of FC Basel, Steaua Bucharest and Sparta Prague without playing at our best. However, we’re likely to be without two key men in the form of John Terry and Eden Hazard.

 

Belief in Jesus?

Under manager Jorge Jesus, Benfica have managed to do the same as Chelsea – keep going in the Europa League after dropping out of the Champions League group stages. A talented squad containing possible future transfer targets like Argentina winger Nicolas Gaitan, Paraguay forward Oscar Cardozo and solid former Real Madrid defender Ezequiel Garay is one not to be taken lightly.

Coming into the final, Benfica could still be left reeling by a dramatic title decider in the league. Up until injury time, they were level at 1-1 against big rivals FC Porto, but a last-gasp winner by opposition striker Kelvin could have cost them the league, having led the table for so long. Picking themselves up for the Europa League final will be tough.

For Chelsea to win, we either have to pray that Fernando Torres does what he’s seldom managed to do since he’s been at the club and find that scoring touch or, more realistically, hope that Juan Mata et al can conjure up some more magic. Mata, along with Oscar and the evergreen Frank Lampard are the most likely scorers.

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KTBFFH

Roman: Put Rafa out of his misery.

Rafa Angry

Rafa Angry

Good morning Blues. I hope you are all coping better than Rafa. Wedneday night went well for Rafa until Rafa decided he had to screw it up.  I will begin with what went well that night for Rafa. Rafa picked an inspired lineup for the Middlesbrough game. The lineup had some fringe players, few regulars and a new starter.  There was a lot skepticism on my twitter time-line about the lineup’s ability to win us the game. Many were concerned that Juan Mata was not on the bench to rescue us should the game not go according to plan. I had my reservations about the lineup too but I always hope for the best.

The lineup did very well. Nathan Ake impressed. The boy has good technique; he was constantly aware of what was happening on pitch. He moved around and positioned himself intelligently. He played as if he was a first team regular. Mikel may soon have real competition. Back to Rafa, Rafa was proactive against Middlesbrough. When Middlesbrough started putting pressure on us, he did not wait till we conceded to perform a substitution. He brought Hazard on and Hazard helped us keep the game in Middlesbrough’s half. We scored a second goal and it helped calm Chelsea nerves. It was good game and result. What is even fantastic is that we achieved it without using all our key players. Wednesday night had gone Rafa’s way.

Then Rafa screwed the night in his post match interview by launching a scathing attack at our management and at us the supporters. Here is Rafa’s statement and my comments:

“A group of fans, they are not doing any favours for the team when they are signing and wasting time preparing banners.

Many supporters don’t like being told what to; you made your situation worse by saying, we are wasting our time.

“It’s because someone made a mistake. They put my title ‘interim manager’, and I will leave at the end of the season, so they don’t need to waste time with me.

Many would prefer you leave before the season ends.

“Why put interim in the title? Why did they need do that? Maybe they thought: “He was at Liverpool”, so put interim in”.

“I have been in charge in football for 26 years. I have won the Champions League, won the FIFA Club World Cup, the FA Cup, the Italian Super Cup, the Spanish league twice, nine trophies, all the trophies you can win at club level.

You have won one out of three FIFA Club World Cup competition you have been in. You seriously damaged an Inter team that had won a treble the previous season. Inter saved your reputation by dismissing you. You took part of Liverpool’s demise. Sometimes I wonder how you won all those trophies.

“The fans have to concentrate on supporting the team, that’s what they have to do.

We support the team. True support is being real and honest when the club is not moving in the right direction.

“In the end, they are not doing any favours to the club, to the rest of the fans and to the players.

If the club wanted favours, they wouldn’t have appointed you. Especially after sacking Di Matteo, a Chelsea legend as a player and manager.

“Every game they continue singing and they continue preparing banners, they are wasting time. What they have to do is support the team.

Again you’re not endearing yourself to your ‘haters’.

“If we cannot achieve what we expect to achieve, that is to be in the top four and be in the Champions League for next year, I will leave; they will stay in the Europa League.

Tells me you really don’t give a damn about us.

“They have to take responsibility too. If they put players under pressure, they don’t create a good atmosphere at Stamford Bridge, they have to realise they are making a big mistake because the rest of the fans would like to see the team in the Champions League next year.

We always cheer the players on. Are Rafa ‘boo boys’ to blame when we lose away like we did at Manchester City?

“I’m the manager and I will be managing the team. I like to manage players and not names, so I will pick my team, and I will make decisions and at the end of the season, I will leave anyway because I am interim like they said.

That’s great. I am sure there will be special send-off parties in your honour.

“Again, they are wasting time, they are wasting time. I have proved in these three months that I want to win every single game.

‘Want’ doesn’t cut it at Chelsea. You need to win every game. Dictating to us how to spend our time won’t help you.

I am a professional and I am sure if we win, I will be the happiest man in the world.

I guess ranting is part of being a professional. I thought you would be happy after we won at Middlesborough. This rant is not coming from the happiest man in the world.

“But if a group of fans continue with their agenda and they continue not supporting the team and wasting time with these things, it’s their decision, but they are not doing any favours to the team, to the club, anyone.

“I have a very good group of players who are working very hard. It’s a top club, so it’s not a problem.

“The problem is a group of people who think they can say what they want instead of supporting the team.

“Again I will say I have won nine titles, all the titles that you can win at club level, in three different countries, so I think I have enough experience and enough quality as a manager to hear a group of people with an agenda carry on.

“They don’t realise that I will leave at the end of the season. They don’t need to be worried about me, but what they have to do is support the team.

“If they don’t do that and we are not in the Champions League at the end, they can blame whatever they want, but we will see the next year the Europa League.

Rafa as manager of Chelsea, you must not flirt with the idea of not qualifying for the Champions League. The thought itself is criminal.

“This group of fans, they have an agenda, they say ‘We are right’. They can be right at the end of the season, it’s simple.

“They put me there with the title ‘interim’, so why do they have to bother about that? Just carry on supporting the team.

Di Matteo had the title ‘interim’ in his job description, it did not bother him. Di Matteo gave his best and won the FA Cup and the Champions league.

“It’s a team in transition – they don’t realise.

“In the past, we had Drogba, Essien, Kalou, these players, it was a very strong squad, players with experience in the Premier League.

Di Matteo’s team was a team in transition too,  he wasn’t blessed with the quality of Hazard, Moses, Ba, Oscar, and Azpilicueta. He faced Napoli, Barcelona, and Bayern with our worst team in a decade and still did the job. This season Di Matteo lost the community shield, super cup and failed to get us out of the champions league group stage. It is a serious ‘crime’ to lose trophies at Chelsea and he was not pardoned for it. He was dismissed. Rafa has also lost two trophies and has done worse than Di Matteo in the league. It amazing how he is still in the job.

“Now we have a group of players with talent, really good players with talent, but they need time.

Rafa you don’t get it. There is no time when it comes to Chelsea. There is no waiting 8 years to get a trophy. Every manager that stays beyond a season must win something. You must deliver.

“It’s a time of transition. But they don’t realise it was a time of transition when I came here.

“The team was not in the Champions League, the team has lost some trophies, so I am trying to do my best and I will try to do my best until the end, until the last minute.

It looks like your best is not doing it for Chelsea because we have lost two more trophies and there is a possibility that we might not make top 4.

“It doesn’t matter what they say. I am a professional, I have experience and I will do my best.

“But if they carry on in the same, they have to take responsibility because they are damaging the image of the club and the rest of the fans because people think all the fans are the same.”

The club damaged their image by sacking a champions league winning manager and by appointing you. I no know not one Chelsea supporter who likes you, it is either indifference or strong dislike.
Rafa was brought to steer the club in the “right direction”. All Chelsea supporters know this is not the right direction. Rafa believes many Blues dislike him because he was successful with Liverpool. This is not the case. Many of us dislike him because he called Drogba “a diver”, he said Lampard was ‘overrated’ and he said Chelsea fans were ‘plastic’ and lacked ‘passion’. If Rafa took one of his initial press conferences to apologize sincerely for those hurtful comments,  he might have gotten a different reception. Instead he further alienated us by stating we dislike him because he was successful at Liverpool against us. Mourinho was successful with Inter against Chelsea but there are many Chelsea fans who will welcome him back in a heart beat. Pep beat Chelsea with Barcelona but Chelsea supporters wouldn’t mind him here. It is called respect; it is something that is earned.
The pressure has gotten to Rafa and I believe he is drowning under the pressure. We might not make top 4 if we do not dismiss him. After all, previous Chelsea managers have gone for much less. When I hear Rafa mention his trophies, it only tells me how bad a manager he has become. All great managers relish pressure and when they do not have pressure, they create it for themselves. The best way to silence your critics is to deliver results. If Rafa had won the Club World Cup or Carling Cup, no matter how much vitriol he receives, his name would be included to the list managers that have won Chelsea a trophy. History would look kindly on him. I think his rant is his way of telling Roman to dismiss him. He won’t resign as it would look bad on his CV and because he won’t walk away with the compensation he would get if he was dismissed.
Roman put Rafa out of his misery. Sack the man.

Give me a follow: @super_chelsea

KTBFFH

Why Chelsea should sign Seydou Doumbia

Morning beautiful people! I woke up on the right side of the bed today and I’m buzzing with excitement for no apparent reason. I have to admit there’s been a lot of quiet around the club as regards summer signings.


We have been linked with many attackers this summer, the top names being Lille’s Eden Hazard, Porto’s Hulk and quite recently Wigan’s Moses. We got Eden as you already know, so Hulk was expected to follow suit. As I write, he is nowhere close to being a Chelsea player.


I won’t say I’m surprised Hulk has not signed for Chelsea. I mean…the relationship between Chelsea and Porto does not exactly rival Romeo and Juliet’s. The Porto management must still hold grudges given how we took Mourinho, Carvalho, Ferreira, and Villas-Boas away from them.


They are the second biggest club in Portugal and do not want to be seen as a feeder club for Europe’s top teams. They want to challenge for European honors and as a result, they tag outrageous prices to their players just to keep bidders off. Last season, Porto informed Chelsea to pay ₤26 million to sign Álvaro Pereira. Pereira is decent at best shouldn’t cost more than ₤12m. Hulk is worth ₤20m in my estimation but given he is a Porto player I expect them to demand close to ₤40m. I’d be gutted if we caved into their demands. Last season, we spent ₤18m on Lukaku and there are little signs to show that it was a good investment.


If there is anyone I think will be good value for money, it is Seydou Doumbia. I honestly believe we should be chasing Seydou Doumbia and I have my reasons.

Seydou Doumbia vs. Lokomotiv defence

 

He scores lots of goals. He was top scorer in the Ivorian league in 2005, he was top scorer in the Swiss super league in 2008–09 and 2009–10 and Russian premier league top scorer in 2010/2011. Seydou has been top scorer in three different leagues and top scorer for three consecutive seasons.


Seydou is African (d’oh). Drogba contract has expired and he chosen to move to China to promote the Chinese game. Salomon Kalou has been released by the club. This leaves us with only two Africans, Mikel and Essien in the first team. We have three Brazilians in Piazon, Ramires and Luiz; three Portuguese in Meireles, Hilário, and Ferreira; four Belgians and many English men. If we add another African to keep Mikel and Essien company, it wouldn’t be bad at all. Especially an African with great talent like Doumbia.


Samsung will be happy. Samsung sells tons of electronics in Africa and they use Chelsea players in almost all their adverts. Samsung uses Drogba the most in their adverts followed Essien and then Mikel.  Samsung loses a great marketing tool with Drogba gone to China because the Chinese league is not popular in Africa. If we signed Seydou Doumbia, Doumbia could be the new face of Samsung in Africa.


Samsung: It’s Drogba’s Choice


Seydou will give Torres and Sturridge competition. Many Blues want Torres to automatically be our main striker next season. I have to say I disagree; competition for places is good for any team. Torres scored many goals for Liverpool but won nothing with them. Van Persie fired le Arse to third place last season but his prolific scoring couldn’t earn them a trophy.


It takes more than one good striker to earn a trophy. I doubt we would have won anything if we did not have Kalou, Torres and Sturridge to rotate with Drogba (and also the many goals from our midfielders).


Man United despite not winning the league ended the league with the same points as Man City. They wouldn’t have gotten there without goals from Rooney, Welbeck, Chicarito and Berbatov. Man City won on goal difference because they had four quality strikers in Tevez, Aguero, Balotelli, and Dzeko. They even want to add Van Persie. Le Arse has signed two strikers in Giroud and Podolski because they know one striker is not enough to win titles. Adding a proven goal scorer in Seydou Doumbia increases our chances of winning the league.


It’s been a couple of years since we won the Premier League title, and I would extremely happy if we make it our priority next season. I mean…now that we have secured the Holy Grail, we can go back to being champions of England again.


Finally if we sign Doumbia, we would have a player with a different playing style to Sturridge and Torres. This will give Di Matteo the chance to change our tactics occasionally to prevent us from being predictable. In our double winning season with Ancelotti, we scored the most goals that season because Ancelotti had the players to prevent us from being predictable.


That’s all I have for you today. Thanks for taking your time to read. Have an amazing day wherever this post meets you.


You can follow me on Twitter: @super_chelsea

Keep the blue flag flying high

Cheers!

188BET offers Chelsea FC fans the chance to quiz Ramires.

Hello Blues,

The club’s official betting partner, 188BET, is offering all Chels the chance to chat live with Ramires.

Ramires will be taking over 188BET’s Twitter account to answer fans’ questions during a special live interview on Thursday 2nd February 2012.

Ramires joined Chelsea FC in 2010 from Benfica and has already clocked up almost 50 appearances for our club, forming a strong midfield partnership with the likes of Meireles and Lampard. He has scored six goals for Chelsea, including the club’s goal of the season award last year for his beautiful strike against Manchester City at Stamford bridge, and also has 27 international caps with his native Brazil to his name.

He will be online at 1:30pm on Thursday 2nd February and will answer a selection of fans’ questions live via 188BET’s Twitter feed. To take part, all Blues fans have to do is log on to Twitter, follow ‘@188BET’ and submit their questions by tweeting ‘@188BET’ along with the hashtag: #askRamires.

So whether you want to know how Ramires occupies himself outside football, who the best dancer in the squad is or perhaps even if he has any quirks, get online on Thursday and ask him your questions!

KTBFFH

Twitter: @super_chelsea

Facebook: fb.me/superchelsea

 

Chelsea Ends Miserable Year

What's happening to our season?

I cannot believe what we witnessed earlier today. It was a very, very disappointing game from the Men In Blue.  Aston Villa came to the Bridge probably seeking a draw and we gifted them a win.

They played 10 men behind the ball and pretended that they would not attack us.  We were keeping possession but we did not make it count.

22 minutes into the game, Dunne brought down Drogba, resulting in a penalty. Drogba scored his 150th goal for the club, a remarkable achievement for him.

If we had killed the game there, we would have Drogba’s 150th goal, Terry’s 400th game as captain and 3 points to cheer going into the new year.

Unfortunately, our Blues disappointed us more than they did on Boxing Day. Goal aside, Drogba was crap; he did needless tricks and gave away possession.

Aston Villa picked one of his misplaced passes and nearly capitalized on it.  Drogba was so terrible that I prayed fervently that AVB would sub him with anyone, even Kalou!

Daniel Sturridge got a few chances and he could have contributed more if he was not selfish. As the game progressed, he faded away and AVB subbed him for Torres. For me Torres performed better for the team than Drogba and Sturridge put together.

The Spaniard made a great strike that hit the crossbar with his first touch; he also gave Drogba a sweet pass, one the big man squandered. I felt Torres could have done more if our midfield given him the ball more often.

The goals we conceded are unacceptable. The first, JT was in good position to prevent Ireland from scoring but he failed.  The second, Luiz decided not to mark Petrov. It must be said though; David Luiz was having a good game until that moment.

Given Aston Villa showed no interest in attacking, AVB brought on Lampard to replace Romeu. AVB made the same mistake when we played Wigan. He made Aston Villa deceive him. With Romeu gone, we lost our ability to break Wigan’s attacks and we lost possession frequently.

Lampard gave away possession in a manner that would have disgusted Oriol. Ireland seized on the opportunity, ran with the ball and set up Darren Bent for an easy finish. 1-3 and there was no way we were coming back.

AVB has his job cut out for him in the upcoming transfer window; he needs to buy players with a winning mentality. In the past, we were noted for grinding out wins even when we played poorly.

We have lost that ability; teams no longer fear us, every team now wants to have a go at Chelsea. I will appreciate AVB more if he stops trying to be a smart ass with the media.

Chelsea has a problem and he should work to fix it. If the rumors that he has been given £150m to spend on quality are true then he should spend it very wisely. Chelsea needs him to get his transfer activity right because a top four finish is not a guarantee this year.

It has been a miserable year for Blues worldwide; I hope our squad makes some positive new resolutions and stick with it throughout 2012.

Keep The Faith (and of course) The Blue Flag Flying High!

Have a prosperous New Year!

Twitter @super_chelsea

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New Deal Offered To Lampard Plus Bids For Barkley & Cahill.

Super Frankie needs no introduction; he has proved his quality over the decade that he has been a Blue. I believe Lamps has the quality to play for more years. During the summer transfer window, there were strong rumors that we made several bids for Gary Cahill so I knew this story wouldn’t die. Finally, I don’t see what is special about Ross Barkley; I believe he is hyped because he is English.

I will always be here for Blues

 

Crunch Sports says we are about to launch a bid for Ross Barkley.

Mirror Football reveals Ross Barkley is on our January wish list.

Crunch Sports says we will launch a £14million for Cahill.

Goal.com reveals Lamps new deal will see him play till 2015.

ESPNStar highlights Lamps professionalism as part reason for new deal proposal.

Chelsea V QPR: Time To Play Hoops

The last time Chelsea played QPR at Loftus Road Glen Hoddle was manager and Dennis Wise was still playing in Blue (1995/1996 season).   We won that game 2-1 and we haven’t faced QPR at Loftus road since then. We hadn’t played them in 12 years prior to our encounter in the FA cup in 2008. In that the game, we won thanks to an own goal from Camp.

Chelsea V QPR FA Cup 2008

It’s been 15 years since Blues have had a valid reason to visit Loftus Road. Given AVB has declared Fulham as our local rivals and not QPR, it might motivate QPR to get a result against us. QPR haven’t won at home in top flight football for over 15 years, it will be a cider moment for them if they can get a result against us.

On paper, we will bulldoze QPR to the ground; we have won 6 times, drawn once and lost once since the season started. Our blue army has scored 17 goals in the last 4 games only conceding three. The chances of QPR getting a result against Chelsea are slim given they have only earned 9 points from their opening eight games. Finally, QPR has already played a London derby; it was against Fulham and they lost 6-0. On paper, we should have a comfortable win given Mata, Drogba and Sturridge were rested ahead of this clash.

Ramires has been ruled out of the QPR match so I expect this to be our lineup: Cech, Bosingwa, Terry, Ivanovic, Cole, Meireles, Mikel, Lampard, Mata, Drogba, and Sturridge. Given Torres scored twice in midweek, Drogba would love to score to stake a claim for a starting place against his favorite team Arsenal next week.

Based on my research on QPR, I expect them to line up (4-4-2) as follows:  Kenny, Derry, Hall, Taarabt, Traore, Bothroyd, Faurlin, Buzsaky, Orr, Connolly, Barton, Young, Smith, Helguson, Murphy, Wright-Phillips, Ferdinand, and Puncheon. QPR have a striking problem because 5 of their goals have come from 5 different players. This problem could work in their favor as they don’t have an obvious goal scoring threat.

I’m expecting a comfortable win, my prediction is 3-0. I hope for more; it would be nice to embarrass Wright-Phillips for his comments about Chelsea after he returned to Man City. Enjoy the game.

KTBFFH

Leboeuf Supports Terry-Luiz partnership

Blue Legend Frank Leboeuf is convinced Luiz and Terry can form a formidable partnership this season. Although Luiz and Terry haven’t played together this season, Leboeuf has seen enough of Luiz to arrive at his conclusion.

Lebeouf, having a number of trophies with us and the World Cup with France deserves to have his opinion taken highly.

He said:

“I think ‘the hairy one’ David Luiz will play alongside John more often than not this season because he has the strength and the pace and can be a great partner for him.”

“I like Alex but he is a bit too similar to John. You have to find someone who is different; the pair must complement one another. Someone who can mark, someone who is faster than John – if I’d played alongside Laurent Blanc it would have been a problem, but Marcel Desailly with me or with him was fine.”

Luiz has been outstanding since his arrival in January last year; he is excellent going forward but a bit suspect when it comes to defending. He is a good defender but he definitely needs some polishing. I say this because Luiz’ over eagerness to win the ball tends to make him commit infringements that could be costly at times.  I believe AVB recognizes this, explaining why he subbed him for Alex later on in the game against Bayer Leverkusen.

Two seasons ago, I would confidently argue the Alex-Terry partnership was the best in the world. Today, Alex is a shadow of himself. He works a good shift but his lapses in concentration and his inability to turn swiftly to address some defensive situations is a bit disturbing. I still believe in Alex and I hope he gets back to his best soon.

Ivanovic has done a good job at centre back this season but it is obvious the chemistry between him, Terry and Cech needs improving. Given he has been deployed mainly as right-back, I believe it will take a good number of games to get him gelling with Terry and Cech.

I’m no soothsayer so I can’t tell which one of Alex, Ivanovic or Luiz will be Terry’s main partner this season. However, given Luiz’ performance against Leverkusen, I believe he should start against United (and yes I do remember his costly mistake at Old Trafford last season).

CareFree

Preview: Chelsea vs. Sunderland

Blues Celebrate Anelka's Goal in 4-2 win over Sunderland.

Stadium: Stadium of Light Date: Saturday, September 10, 2011 Time: 3pm (UK Time)

Our Blues head North East to face the black cats. Our Blues have switched off the lights at Sunderland with six wins in our last six visits. Anelka is our top threat against Sunderland with seven goals in five clashes. On paper, our game against Sunderland should be an easy win as Sunderland have lost their last three league games at home.

I believe any major threat from Sunderland will come from Bendtner. The self proclaimed best striker in the world, an arrogant bum wants to prove his critics wrong. Given nobody wanted to sign him on a permanent deal during the transfer window, Bendtner would want to give his best against us to attract interests from prestigious clubs. I don’t expect Asamoah Gyan to be on the pitch for Sunderland given the hamstring injury he picked up during international break.

I expect Sunderland to line up with a 4-4-1-1 formation tomorrow. Based on their previous games, transfer activity and injury situation I believe this will the Sunderland line up:  Mignolet, Bardsley, Richardson, Brown, Bramble, Larsson, Elmohamady, Cattermole (C), Colback, Sessegnon, and Bendtner.

I expect our Blues to line up in a 4-3-3 formation. I believe this will be our lineup: Cech, Bosingwa, Alex, Terry, Cole, Mikel, Ramires, Lampard, Sturridge, Torres and Mata. Although we signed Meireles, I don’t expect him to start right away; I expect him to make his Chelsea debut as a substitute. Luiz is available for selection tomorrow but given Sunderland are a tricky team; I believe Andre will stick to the steady Alex-Terry partnership.

Let’s hope for a good victory at Sunderland. I leave you with a video containing all the goals from our last trip there.

KTBFFH

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