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Chelsea Terrace Talk – Irish Examiner Article By Trizia

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Who could have predicted such a tumultuous season after the fairy tale ending in Munich last May? For those of you with good memories, you will remember that I was very uneasy about Di Matteo being given the job permanently – as good a guy as he was he never had the experience for such a high profile job with a big club – and despite leading us to Champions League glory, his lack of tactical nous was exposed for everyone to see when defending the trophy – that said, he was very shabbily treated, sacked at 3am at the training ground after having just landed back from the Juventus game – what a way to treat a man who helped deliver the first trophy since our resurgence arguably began in 1997.

But as out of depth as he was, never in a million years did I expect the hated Benitez to rock up at Stamford Bridge – I honestly (stupidly) believed that even our board weren’t that stupid – I know, I know – I am naive…..

There are those saying that his appointment has been vindicated – because we have qualified for the Champions League and won the Europa Cup – this is no demonstration of anything other than the fact that we have some of the best players in the league. He barely delivered the bare minimum.

When Di Matteo was sacked, although we were all but virtually out of the Champions League, we were still in contention for the title – 4 points off United. We have now ended up 14 points behind them, down mainly to Benitez’s inability to counter opposition tactics and being totally unable to change a game.

Some of the awful teams we have lost to under Benitez’s stewardship have been a testament to his ego, stubbornness and tactical acumen or should I say lack of it. He has guided us to losing 16 points from winning positions (look back to how many points we finished behind United….) and his substitutions were at best ill-advised, at worst, often spiteful.

Then who could forget his little tantrum after the Middlesbrough cup game where his loathing of us was laid bare for all to see – we didn’t care – we loath him more – he may have won over half a dozen idiots with short memories but the majority of us despise him as much now, if not more so, than when he was first forced upon us. But I don’t want this review to be all about Benitez – he simply isn’t worth the column inches.

This has been the season where Lampard cemented his place in Chelsea history – a record breaker, an ambassador, a legend. His contribution to our club has been unbelievable; many (including some Chelsea fans) questioned the eleven million pound price tag when we bought him – name me anyone who has provided such a return – I honestly can’t think of one player who even comes close to measuring up so consistently for so long. He’s earned the extension to his contract and I can only hope that he will take the opportunity as much to study under the genius of Mourinho as add to his goal scoring tally and one day become our manager.

One has to mention Torres too – another average season but he has scored more goals than you would think and for me – that goal at the Nou Camp justifies the signing alone. The papers are already saying that his time is up at Chelsea – surprisingly I would have liked to have seen how he would have fared under Mourinho – not his sort of forward granted, but if anyone could get him going then I think Jose could have done.

I also want to take this opportunity to thank Paulo Ferreira for his contribution to our club – bought in as part of the Jose revolution, he has always been dependable, the ultimate professional and one of the most dapper individuals to be associated with Chelsea – Paulo epitomises style – the King’s Road and Chelsea – good luck to him wherever he ends up.

Obviously winning the Europa trophy was great but I did enjoy finishing above Arsenal almost as much – to see the Gooner gonks celebrating 4th like they had just beaten Real Madrid in a Champions League final shows how low their expectations now are – how very small time.

Tottenham missing out again also makes me all warm inside – with any luck Bale will leave for some club who have believed the hype and send them back to the ignominy of mid table nothingness.

But I have to say, that although the season turned out better than I expected, I am still relieved that it’s over. It has not been fun seeing supporters arguing with each other while others still have boycotted games since Benitez joined us. The board must have been most relieved when Champions League qualification was achieved – I’d imagine they felt that the decision was justified – but at what cost?

So we await the official announcement of the next manager – we think we know who it is – we hope we know who it is – the banners of adoration are ready – we know it will eventually end in tears – but we know there will be some mental times in between.

As for Benitez, he left it until the last game of the season to finally make two good decisions – firstly to give Paulo a couple of minutes at the end of the Everton game – a fitting farewell; and secondly not to come out for the traditional lap of appreciation – he would have soured the moment – most of us still detest him and will never forgive – no matter what was scrawled on a grubby pillowcase by some retard with a crayon. As an aside he publicly put himself forward for the Everton job – he’s got some front – perhaps he thinks that their fans have forgotten the fact that he called them a small club with a small club mentality; the man has no shame and for that I leave my final sentence about him to William Shakespeare…..

“Go now and fill another room in hell”

Let the party begin…..

Posted by Trizia

(You can see all the Terrace Talk articles here)

Discussion

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  1. I may be one of half a dozen idiots (probably more chelsea fans who respect rafa now)who like to comment on this anti Rafa site.Rafa has done very well dignified and professional for CFC.We may have the best players in the league but not enough strength in depth owing to injuries in the marathon season.I do not think Di Matteo would have done any better than Rafa, 3rd CL spot and a trophy.I want Rafa to stay (sure there are Chelsea fans like me)and it will end in tears you lot if Jose decides to go elsewhere. Be grateful as a Chelsea fan.

    Posted by Bob | May 20, 2013, 1:42 pm
    • This site is anything but anti Rafa.
      We merely post articles that are sent in that represent Chelsea supporters as a whole.
      Should you wish to send in a pro Rafa article I would be only too happy to put it up, in fact, I hope you do as most only send comments about the articles posted without sending anything that can be make more public.
      Thank you for your comments.
      Ed

      Posted by Admin | May 20, 2013, 2:10 pm
  2. For Christ sake let it go woman!!
    How the hell can you say it’s not been fun seeing supporters arguing with each other yet feel its ok to write such bile as ‘he may have been won over half a dozen idiots’ or indeed the very professionally written ‘no matter what was scrawled on a grubby pillowcase by some retard with a crayon’. These are fellow fans that you feel it’s ok to slag off because they choose not to agree with you, yes?
    Grow up, and like Benitez, move on.

    Posted by Farnborough Blue | May 20, 2013, 2:44 pm
  3. What a fantastic article – sums up everything as I saw it through out the season.

    I too wasn’t convinced by RDM but Rafa – ffs?!!!

    He was average at best and I think almost anyone could have done better.

    Thank god he’s gone and onwards and upwards

    Posted by Ian | May 20, 2013, 2:44 pm
  4. Spot on as usual. Imagine what could have been if Benitez had a clue about man management?

    The board have more to answer for though

    Keep up the good work

    Posted by SammyD | May 20, 2013, 2:47 pm
  5. The self proclaimed tactical f****** genius demonstrated how far he has drifted from his peak 8 or 9 years ago, in the League cup semi finals against Swansea. It was Swansea, in my mind, who were the first team to shut down the 3 Amigos. Liverpool did the same the following week, and Di Matteo went shortly afterwards.

    So given that Swansea only play one way, and FSW had the DVDs to prove it, did he use his tactical genius to select a side and tactics in the semi-final to deal with them? Did he heck as like. People will remember Ivan’s mistakes, but they’d be missing the whole setup as outlined above. 0-0 in the 2nd leg, and we exited, just like how we lost the World Club Cup and the FA Cup.

    I can think of only 2 occasions, 10 minutes from time, where he played Torres and Ba together, switching to a 4-4-2. He never demonstrated that he could find another way other than 4-2-3-1, a system that Di Matteo hit upon, piecing together the wreckage of AVB’s folly. So now he goes, probably to wreck another club as he did Inter.

    Wait for what the players really thought about him to start coming out. If you liked him, great. But leave the rest of us alone. We disliked him not without reason.

    Posted by CFCNick | May 20, 2013, 2:49 pm
  6. A very well observed article which reflects the views of the vast majority of rational Chelsea supporters.

    Benitez has been appalling in his entire time at Chelsea.

    He came having caused rancour with the supporters. He refused to acknowledge this and to apologise. He kept himself apart from the paying public and tried to distance the team as well.

    He drew at home with Fulham, lost to QPR and drew away with Brentford. While making the rest of West London happy, he failed to understand the importance of winning these games. He doesn’t understand the passion of the supporters. He denies that it exists.

    He lost the League and FA Cups. Both of these were within our hands. He lost them.

    Reading away. What can one say about that performance? I could go on.. West Ham away. Various others. Even those we won left us watching nervously as leads threatened to evaporate.

    He took over when we were second in the league. We could at least have finished runners up.

    The World Club Championship.

    The attack on supporters after Middlesborough.

    The disdain for supporters.

    His treatment of Lampard and Terry.

    The blame is not his alone. Buck and his chums share it, but don’t be fooled by the fact that the reigning European Champions won a secondary competition – after all, we had to be favourites to do that – or squeezed through into third place. The season was not good enough but worse, far worse, he set out to damage the link between supporters and the club. Don’t let his legacy increase the disunity between supporters.

    Posted by Driver on the wing | May 20, 2013, 3:47 pm
    • Corking post!!! Up there with the article – the majority of us were never fooled for a minute – good riddance to bad rubbish

      Posted by SammyD | May 20, 2013, 11:22 pm
  7. I don’t like the way Rafa dealt with John Terry, a legend and consistent performer. Given his history, Rafa was always going to be a controversial and hated figure by long time Chelsea fans. I think the team did as well as it did in spite of Rafa, not because of him. I’m glad to see him go.

    Posted by Brian Tanguay | May 21, 2013, 1:27 am
    • Totally agree about his treatment of Terry & of Lampard to a certain degree – he only really bought Lampard back into the fold when he belatedly realised that he could potentially save the season. Both players have contributed too much (& could still contribute) to be treated with such little respect

      Posted by SammyD | May 21, 2013, 8:26 am
  8. Benitez was a huge mistake from the beginning. He used Chelsea to re-launch his career; he had no respect for the club, the fans and the majority of the players. He my have won over a few idiots who have had their eye drawn by the Europa Cup but they missed the ooint on what this team COULD have won if there hadn’t have been an egotistical has been at the helm.

    But he’s gone now (we hope) and we can all move on

    Posted by John Salter | May 21, 2013, 11:31 am
  9. What a load of spiteful tripe. Petty,vindictive tripe. Rafa is a professional, got on with the job,qualified for the champions league won us the europa league and has moved on. A professional.

    I expect you will be welcoming home JM with open arms.Just remember,he loves inter and their fans more than you.Dont forget it.I wonder if you will reserve the same venom and petty insults for him? Didnt think so.

    Posted by Orestes | May 21, 2013, 12:11 pm
  10. Do you get paid for that? I hope not.

    Posted by Gary Jones | May 21, 2013, 1:30 pm
  11. Spot on. Relieved that this season has finished, but looking forward to the next whatever it may bring.

    Posted by Beverley Klymkiw | May 21, 2013, 1:36 pm
  12. What Manager accepts his medal before his squad? Classless Benitez. Sayanora Big Man.

    Posted by TacticsWizard | May 21, 2013, 2:30 pm
  13. Fans, supporters of CFC, we’re entitled to our opinion on Rafa. So Uncle Roman sacking of RDM and hiring of Rafa worked in a way.We can all move on now.On to Jose who is combustible, not keen on pace, finesse, attacking football (what Roman wants)and youth.Just wonder if the Special None comes in, what the future will hold for the 3 Amigos, and the many better talented youth like Lukaku,Courtois,Chalobah, De Bruyne and who are ready to be given a run with the first team. Just think Arsene would love to have many of our Chelsea youngsters. We are so fortunate.

    Posted by Bob | May 22, 2013, 12:24 am

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