Eden Hazard tormented West Ham; it was like watching a cat toying with a mouse before he finally decides it’s time for the kill; he along with Mata demonstrated what this team could be – we saw a glimpse of the kind of football that we know Roman craves and the kind of football that we could deliver – given a “proper” manager at the helm.
The intricate passing dazzled and when Oscar came on too, the hapless Hammers had to resort to the dark arts to try and stop the tricky trio because they sure weren’t going to contain them by fair means. In fact, given how far behind West Ham were in every department yesterday, I would imagine that they were pretty pleased with having kept the score down to just two nil. Although, that may have more to do with Demba Ba’s poor finishing than any defensive triumph for their back four. We are still in desperate need of at least two top class strikers – even if Lukaku does come back next season which seems to be the case.
But the real highlight yesterday was watching Lampard score his 200th Chelsea goal against his bete noir. The marsh men won’t have enjoyed that – Lampard made sure he went and celebrated up their end – rub it in – lovely – and who can blame him given the stick they give him. They despise him and he despises them right back. They must be sick of seeing him score and they must be sick of seeing him receive medals and pick up trophies – a player they castigated when he was at West Ham because they believed he was not good enough to play for the first team and had only been elevated there by nepotism. Shows how much the fans of the “academy” understand football.
Also showing his contempt for our visitors yesterday was John Terry – West Ham like to chant things about John Terry’s mother (classy) as do the scousers – so JT made sure that when he warmed up he went right over to their end, which got them all excited, and then he bent down in front of them – pointing his arse in their direction – childish maybe, but amusing nevertheless given how outraged they all got. He also demonstrated the art of “lifting a trophy” – although given that the Irons haven’t seen anyone in claret & blue lift a proper trophy in over 30 years, it was probably lost on the majority of them.
Even Benitez was forgotten for this game – the fierce rivalry with our London neighbours, Lampard’s milestone, Hazard’s genius and JT’s antics allowed us to pretend that he wasn’t even there which was actually a welcome relief. Not that he has been accepted you understand – that will never happen, but the end of the season is drawing to an end – as is his tenure and the relief is palpable – as it may be for him to be fair.
Tottenham’s loss is something we need to capitalise on, as out of all those sides in contention for that Champions League place, we seem to have the most difficult run in as well as having a ridiculously crowded fixture list. The owner will dictate that top four is the priority but I do wonder whether Benitez’s (considerable) ego will go all out for a trophy.
But back to where I started – Eden Hazard – can be an absolute phenomenon for us (and cost less than Andy Carroll). He could be as important as Bale is for Tottenham and influential as Ronaldo is for Real Madrid. But unlike Bale at Tottenham he will have equally gifted players around him. I can’t help but wonder what Jose Mourinho would do with this team given the chance. I can see the scintillating football that we witnessed in our first season under the Special One where Robben and Duff ripped teams apart. Even more exciting, Mata, Oscar and Hazard look far more robust that our former heroes as they have demonstrated since they joined the Premiership – they are often targeted by oafish centre-halfs and either skip past them in a Zola-esque fashion or simply get up when caught.
Given these players, Jose’s tactical awareness and legendary motivational skills – can you imagine what we could achieve?? Makes you all shivery doesn’t it?
But here and now there is one job to do – top four finish – anything else is a bonus. Come on Chelsea!
Posted by Trizia