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Chelsea Terrace Talk – Irish Examiner Article By Trizia

I honestly believed that we would win against West Ham, despite Benitez being at the helm. We haven’t lost to them in nearly ten years and to put it bluntly, our players are simply much better than theirs. I thought this would relieve the pressure a bit all round, and given a few favourable results elsewhere, a few wins here and there we could perhaps free-wheel our way to the end of the season relatively unscathed, perhaps not in a Champions League place, but hey, that’s not a given as we all know.

I also honestly believed that we would perhaps benefit from the “new manager effect”, in the short term at least. Most clubs do – a woeful run of games, new man comes in – any man, and there are almost always an initial run of wins. This has not happened in our case and I think the stuttering results will continue.

Put aside what I feel personally about Benitez, the fact of the matter is that he has been out of top flight management for two years. Two years is a long time – as demonstrated on how he was out-thought by Sam Allardyce of all people. When any new manager takes over at a club, it is difficult enough to take stock of the players, decide on how/if they will fit in with your formations and style of play. But if you have been out of the game for two years, it will take time to get back into the routine, to get into that way of thinking again – get your “game-head” on as it were. Which, by the way, makes the appointment of Bolo Zenden even more bizarre – couldn’t we have got someone with even a smidge of experience?

Is that really the best they could do in terms of “quick, this appointment isn’t going to go down well – let’s get an ex-player to pacify the great unwashed to be his assistant”? If it is, then they really are more out of touch than even I thought they were.

As bad as things are on the pitch (shambolic is the word I’d use) – sadly things are as bad within the ranks of the supporters. The majority of the regular match-going fans seem to be hard-core against Benitez. Yet more banners and chanting against him at Upton Park, and now also questioning the owner – if ever there was a time he needed to speak publicly to the fans – this is it. He won’t of course.

But equally there are fans who think that we should back the manager no matter what – that by not backing the manager you are not backing the team. They are of course entitled to their opinion, but it is not one I share. I think the two can be mutually exclusive, however, not everyone feels the same and there were the beginnings of scuffles amongst the fans on Saturday at West Ham. This is a crying shame as all just want what they feel is best for our team.

There are very few “football people” in the upper echelons of our club, so I do not think they can expect nor deserve the full confidence of the supporters. The fact that such an inexperienced individual such as Emenalo seems to hold such a powerful position is enough to make me doubt the credentials of those doing the hiring and firing.

I also believe that as stated previously the fans should not choose the manager, to go expressly against them and wilfully put in place something/someone that they aggressively object to – well, then you need to be prepared for the ramifications. We fans not only pay our money and have done so for years – but we are emotionally tethered to the football club, and they should at least consider the wishes of the supporters when it makes its decisions, we are owed that small consideration at the very least. No club is anything without its supporters

The fact of the matter is that Benitez is just not the right “fit” for Chelsea – not culturally, not given his history, his style of play, his personality – not anything – just like Avram Grant

This conflict is demonstrating itself in the deification of Roberto Di Matteo – his name was chanted again at 16 minutes with another extended round of applause. If we are honest, Di Matteo was a pretty average manager too but the way he was treated (and the winning of the Champions League of course) have elevated him to god like status. A little thought and some better advice and this whole debacle could have been handled better. Instead we have a club at war – and that can’t be good for anyone.

The club held its annual lunch this week and in the past, no matter what the circumstances were, Bruce Buck would always give a speech and would never avoid the difficult topics of the day. This time round he sneaked out of the function room 20 minutes or so before the close of the event. I’m not surprised – this one is a tough sell.

I actually don’t blame him either – the last thing the club needed was the Chairman publicly heckled at such an event as I am sure that’s what would have happened. As it were there were a couple of chants of “One Di Matteo” as the day progressed.

So where do we go from here? The problem is that the club and Abramovich have painted themselves into a bit of a corner. They stated that Di Matteo was sacked to keep Chelsea moving in the right direction – so what happens if Benitez doesn’t do that? What if the run of these results continue? What’s Plan B?

There is already a sniff of total mutiny in the air – some fans already have boycotted games, some threatening not to renew season tickets, cancellation of subscribed Chelsea media, refusal to buy merchandise – which will only be made worse if bad results continue. If then at the end of the season Guadiola refuses to come (and who would blame him) – what then? Answers on a post card to Mr. R. Abramovich, SW6

Posted by Trizia

(You can see all of Trizia’s articles here)

Discussion

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  1. Nice one again Triz. Bad feeling it’ll get worse before it gets better tbh.

    Posted by Davie | December 3, 2012, 11:37 am
  2. What a great article, thoroughly agree with everything said.
    We need a manager who is strong, I appeal to Roman, WE NEED JOSE BACK. He loves our club and would give us back our pride and status as one of the top teams of the EPL.

    Posted by Terry Austerberry | December 3, 2012, 2:34 pm
  3. Tbh I’ve loved Chelsea but I don’t think it was the best decison to sack RDM fair enough he wasn’t doing well but he shouldn’t have been sacked I’m sure we could have beat Fulham and West Ham and we possibly could have got Falcao because at the moment it seems like he’s going nowhere .. I don’t know if its our right to blame the owner .. We have one more trophies than United in the past 10 years and even though he makes the wrong decision we should remember that if its not for him we would be nowhere ..Let’s stay united and TBH Benitez should F*ck of.and we need a better footballing director with connection eg (Zidane Madrid , Leonardo,PSG ) someone who knows what he’s doing except the Liverpool manager

    CFC forever
    Mbo
    South Africa

    Posted by mbo | December 3, 2012, 2:55 pm
  4. You did a very good job in dwelling on the problem!! On the other hand, I think we should let go of the hatred and support benitez @ least until the end of the season so as not to have regrets!! He was at liverpool so he was protecting their interest, that’s doing his job. Mourinho did the same with us! Let’s not contribute to the errors of the management! Chelsea4life under any circumstance

    Posted by Amos | December 3, 2012, 3:33 pm
    • He is not the right person for our club – he will not take us forward. “Backing him” will not make any difference except make those of us that object to his tenure hypocrits. I will contnue to support the team – I will remian silent over the manager

      Posted by Trizia | December 3, 2012, 5:22 pm
  5. The result at West Ham just puts into context what a dire manager we have. Setting aside the Liverpool acrimony, how did the board over-look the very short period of time Benitez spent at Inter and then the long period of time that he was out of work for? That in itself tells a huge story about why the board should have steered clear of appointing him in the first place.

    Chelsea fans demonstrated their anger towards a possible appointment of Benitez prior to the appointment of Roberto Di Matteo, because we knew then that Benitez would take the club into a whirlpool of anger and annoyance. The board have now done a fine job in alienating us and all that was good about the side at the start of the season by appointing El camarero Españoles grasa.

    The board should admit that they’ve got it wrong and put us all out of our misery before it’s too late.

    Benitez Out!

    Posted by Pete | December 3, 2012, 3:48 pm
  6. well written. it’s a major worry that the powers that be aren’t football people. they don’t know why the club runs the way it does, and they can’t really effect positive change because they only see the numbers.

    i think i can clarify the problem many supporters, like myself, have with benitez. i look at him, without hate, and i don’t see a man that truly wants to manage the Chels. he’s here for the money, the job, quite possibly any prestige he can draw from the job, and move on. that is the definition of an interim manager. but, we know he doesn’t like this club, and wouldn’t be managing if he’d had another offer. for two years the football world had done one of the most brilliant things in history in leaving him jobless. RA’s decision to appoint him is staggering. it’s offensive, insulting, and clueless. i say all this without hate. i won’t waste it on benitez. i say it because it’s true.

    i don’t think we’re contributing to the errors of the management, Amos, i think we’re telling them they’ve made a massive misstep in every sense involving this club. the last eight years with DD, Lamps, Terry and the merry-go-round of managers only barely succeeded in bringing us the CL trophy. it’s time to pick a manager and let him do his job over the long term. RDM was piloting a ship of new players and personalities. a tough job man management, to say the least. a rough patch, combined with this buffoonery of management change could possibly set us back for the rest of the season. it’s not our fault, for sure, as some have tried to lay the blame for the team’s poor performance at our doorstep recently. those of us with real world expectations knew this season would most likely be devoid of silverware, and only the slimmest of chances to retain our CL spot. but, we knew the future was brighter than ever before. the collection of talent in this squad is massive and clearly recognized. roman’s made a massive mistake in pushing for too much too soon, and the club may pay the price in the form of players wanting out if it goes worse than expected.

    Posted by Jaime | December 3, 2012, 10:33 pm
  7. No mention of the “T” word in the article Trizia ! I`m certain Torres added to the downfall of Di Matteo, if it is to be believed that he was forced to play Torres under any circumstances then the manager`s credentials are seriously undermined . If Torres continues to play week in week out in his present form ( and lets be honest its like playing with ten men ! ) then it will be interesting to see if Benitez dare drop him . And whatever happened to the old days when players seriously out of form were dropped into the reserves for a spell ! that was the way to try recapture form and confidence while still playing in a match situation
    And why is Zenden back at the club ? that appointment is just baffling !

    Posted by jonesy | December 3, 2012, 11:14 pm
  8. Good article Trizia.Here lies the root of the problem ….”There are very few “football people” in the upper echelons of our club”.Very few “football people” and nobody “Chelsea”.
    “Wee Pat” writing articles on the website & the likes of Emenalo & Bobby kin Campbell advising Roman!

    Pat Nevin for Technical Director!!

    Posted by Jason | December 4, 2012, 1:12 pm
  9. Simple question???

    How can Benitez play Torres every week??

    This highlights that Benitez is just Romans puppet – toy.

    Torres was out of form well before we signed him.

    I believe we only signed him so Roman could show his buying power because nobody else would have been mugged for £50 million for a player that was so out of form for so long.

    Lets hope Torres shirt sales helps towards the £50 million and the £200k a week because he is not much use else where.

    You might think that the above comments are harsh, but Torres has had almost 2 years to prove himself and we have backed him, chanted his name and supported him. My patience is over with somebody who clearly doesn’t want to get stuck in for chelsea, he is no threat up front and I have never seen him “bully” a center back in 2 years. Get rid Chelsea, and get a striker with some back bone who wants to play heart and soul for Chelsea.

    I dont know if it was just me but Moses was more of a threat than Torres against West Ham, and Torres offered nothing in the 2nd half when we needed to get back into the game yet he stayed on the pitch for 90 mins(avoiding the ball at all cost).Benitez are you blind??

    Also Torres £200k for that performance and alot of other performances is an insult to the adverage person who faulks out there last pennies to watch there beloveded Chelsea.

    As far as Benitez goes!! it turns my stomach that he will be in Chelsea’s history as one of our (many) managers, I will sing Benitez out untill he goes (come on santa bring us a gift and sack Benitez)

    I wonder what the board thinks of Benitez now, I pray they are thinking “God what have we done to Chelsea FC”

    Always end on a positive, I will sing loud and stand proud for the rest of my team at Chelsea week in week out as its chelsea’s blood that runs through my veins.

    Posted by PAUL | December 5, 2012, 8:13 pm
  10. Good article. The sad thing is that our fans can do little to change footballing decisions made by the club. We just have to live with it or boycott the club.

    Posted by Valky | December 7, 2012, 12:29 pm

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