I’m not sure what I found more amazing – how well we started or how poorly Arsenal started. One of my biggest criticisms of Chelsea in recent months is how we start games so slowly – not so this time. We were up and at ’em immediately and they couldn’t get near us – there’s a lesson in there somewhere.
Having spoken to some Arsenal fans since I have to laugh at how apoplectic with rage they were over Ramires – claiming he was out to maim some of their players – you have seen Ramires right? About seven stone soaking wet – if he is bullying anyone on the pitch then they need to look at themselves.
The puzzling thing was what the hell Benitez said to the team at half time for them to come out playing like they were in some sort of mogodon induced stupor. It was like invasion of the body snatchers with Mata seemingly affected the worst.
In the first half he was at his mercurial best- all over the pitch, completing raking pin-point passes, playing lovely dummies leaving punch-drunk Arsenal players in his wake – scoring obviously – it was a joy to behold.
In the second half, Chelsea fans would have been forgiven for thinking that Doug Rougvie had somehow locked the Spanish magician in the bogs, and trotted out to the Stamford Bridge pitch wearing his shirt.
Can’t just single out Mata though – the whole team seemed to have undergone some bizarre metamorphosis where they had forgotten that they were professional footballers. Arsenal of old would have punished us and how but they have lost that clinical element. They lack that experienced leader on the pitch – they never replaced the likes of Adams, Viera, Keown and it shows. They have high hopes for Wiltshire in that regard (and he does have the makings of a great player) – but at the moment he is a tad reckless – I think the media love-in he is enjoying is serving him well on the pitch as he should be in the referees book more often than he actually is.
Speaking of players they have never replaced – step forward one Ashley Cole – it is no co-incidence that Arsenal have won nothing since he left – yet his personal haul since arriving at the Bridge has been amazing – a fact he was only too pleased to put out there via his twitter feed.
Arsenal fans can’t complain that he is giving it back – after all, they seem to never tire of taunting him – bet that extra five thousand pounds a week they wouldn’t give him looks more & more paltry every year; especially as Wenger is in the top three earning managers in the world – so his players wages can be capped but his can’t – word for that – hypocrisy….
As for Ashley Cole himself, although not made official just yet, all the signs are that Chelsea have come to their senses and given him an additional year’s contract. If you took all the sentiment out of the game, given the choice of keeping just one out of terry, Lampard & Cole, most with their sensible heads on would probably pick the left back. Of the three only Cole can really boast all of the following – first team pick for his position every time for club & country; very rarely injured; you would struggle to really name anyone better than him, in that position, anywhere in the world.
Prospects for a new Lampard contract do not look so rosy – but one lives in hope.
One contract that just HAS to be renewed is Wenger’s of course – Chelsea played their part in ensuring that common sense prevails in North London too by the whole ground chanting “we want you to stay – Arsene Wenger we want you to stay” – I’m sure Le Professor appreciated the love…..
Six points from our North London rivals have been very welcome indeed – hard to believe that we managed to do that yet have gifted a side like QPR four points this season – will the real Chelsea please stand up. With four away games on the trot – all to supposedly “lesser” opposition, I have no idea what to expect – the Chelsea we saw in the first half yesterday or the one we saw in the second half? As for the Benitez situation, the palpable, public gestures of hatred have given way to mainly simmering loathing – not because feeling is softening with the vast majority of fans but simply with the acceptance that we are stuck with him until the end of the season no matter what. I was also given a timely reminder of how bad things could get when I came face to face with Avram Grant outside the West Stand before the match *shudder*
With Guadiola’s sensible decision to go to Munich, it does leave many of us wondering who next with take the reins at The Bridge. Happily there have been murmurings of Moyes or Kloppe – I wouldn’t mind either of those – and let’s face it, they are not Benitez which makes them acceptable in my book.
The only thing that I hope for no matter who rocks up at Chelsea, is that we become a united club once again – the infighting amongst fans and the disharmony with the board following Benitez’s appointment is far from ideal. The club need to realise that although we have no “right” to be considered when making decisions, they should do so to preserve the bond with the supporters – as they never know when they might need us…..
Posted by Trizia