Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Somehow we still remain atop the league..

After tie with bottom feeders West Ham, Carlo declared:
“We didn't play a good match. What happened in the first half was not good.
“The second half was better, but we came up against a strong team, a tough team, who put a lot of pressure on our midfield.”
Is it just me or this is becoming a recording...? C'mon Carlo! We all watch games, we all can see that we're not playing well. Since loss at Man City, we've been struggling against any teams that has pressure on our midfield. If not for Frank Lampard's heroics, we'd be talking about a loss.
Carlo also mentioned fatigue. Players are tired... once again, bit of obvious news there, but aren't other teams tired too? Surely, some teams might not play as many games as not every team is competing for all of them Cups, but also let's consider the fact that some teams have injury crisis bar none. West Ham is one of those tams. Yet, we see fully motivated team doing all they can do to salvage every point. We had a golden chance to go 6 points above Man United whom struggling on their own. I am starting to think that Carlo has issues motivating players, could it be language barrier or is it plain and simple as our players getting old? So many of them are playing out of their preferred positions.
How I miss days of Robben and Duff terrorizing defenses. We need someone to step up or purchase someone capable of magic, during winter transfer window. We can only rely so much on our Right/Left Backs to offer width. Yet, Carlo remains adamant that we do not need any new signings... Secretly I hope it's a smokescreen.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Finally a win

What a nervous place Bridge was yesterday evening! We've outplayed Pompey, but yet again we found ourselves level after, yet another, set piece blunder. It seems luck is going totally against us these days. Anyone who believes that we're going to be "totally fine" when African Cup starts must be deluded. Without Drogba, we're totally different team, much weaker.
When you think about it, ANY team would miss Drogba. Whatever you think of him, opposing teams count their stars when he is not in the starting lineup.
In any case, we've finally gotten valuable 3 points in the game that was supposed to be a total blowout, after all, Pompey are bottom dwellers and we're league leaders! It's amazing what a loss can do. After our Carling Cup exit, we've not been the same. Loss at Man City highlighted our fragile state. Petr Cech and defense are fighting to regain some sort of composure during set pieces, an ugly flaw that has crippled our team. And when you think that not that long ago we were boasting quite impressive shutout record at the Bridge, it's quite mind baffling that we're so poor as of late. then again, it's all about confidence! not just ours, opposing teams.
Every team watches us and will try to exploit our flaws, it's part of the game. There is no reason for us supporters to give them more ammunition. Booing own team is exactly that ammunition that opposing teams seek. Instead of cheering our team, we opt to silently eat our own fingers and moan about every time our player looses the ball. Bridge resembled a cemetery yesterday.. quite amazing feat when you take in consideration that there were 40000+ spectators... why bother going to the game then?

Monday, December 7, 2009

0 for 2 for Carlo

After beating Arsenal, life looked rosy. We were cruising on top of the table and starting to open pretty good gap between us and United.
Then came Carling Cup tie against Blackburn...
Carlo decided to imitate Wenger and play kids! Sure, a noble gesture to give them some playing time, but was there such a huge need for it, especially when we have all but meaningless game against Apoel in Champions league? Sure, some kids will not be able to play, but I'd rather see Jose like mentality. Play first squad, get a few goals ahead, then introduce kids. Instead, we start weak, then rush into decision to replace 3 players during half time. Love and behold, Kalou is injured, we go down a man, fight back to force penalties, but loose. Should have Kakuta been last to take penalty? Another point to debate.
Hughes didn't make this mistake, while playing strong squad, they have dismantled Arsenal and we ready for us. It's amazing what confidence can do, isn't it? Citeh's work rate was incredible. We were all but bullied all game long. Terry and Carvalho had no better ideas but to pass back to Cech, who in turn would kick ball and we'd eventually loose ball possession. Citeh were fantastic. Tevez and De Jong were playing like a madmen. I think everyone, but Carlo has anticipated a physical game, otherwise, why was Deco playing again? He is not good when it comes to physical games, nor he is good when he doesn't have time to sit on the ball. Deco also drifts in and out of the games and usually doesn't start playing well until clock hists 70th minute mark.
There is no need to moan about ref calls nor about potential hand ball that lead to first goal by Citeh, there is a reason to whine about Carlo's tactics and team selection.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Winning ways continue..

It's good to see that winning ways continue. 4 goals against Wolves, in a game that saw Essien rise to his best. 2 goals for him was not enough due to all chances he had, but there is no reason to dwell upon that. Win is a win! 3 more points in the bag, so far we sit pretty on top of the table.
Porto game was a bit of a bore. This is probably due to fact that both teams have already qualified for next stage and we were playing almost for the bragging rights (and hopefully weaker opponent). Once again, Anelka has proven to be the nemesis of the Portuguese team.
ManYoo managed to loose to Besiktas at the Old Trafford aka "Theater or wet dreams" but they have picked up whole 3 points last Saturday in the league play.
Liverpool has been eliminated from the CL.. good riddance. Surely 'pooh' fans will go on about lack of Chelsea history and about how many CL titles they have won, in the past. Let them gloat about that, there is no denial past glory. I'll concentrate on our current situation and remind them that they are in second tier "Europa League" now.
I was also surprised by the Arsenal's defeat to Sunderland on Saturday, it must be November. We have fantastic chance to give them second league defeat in 2 weeks this Sunday, should be cracker of a game!

Friday, November 20, 2009

2 weeks of bliss

It's been 2 weeks since we've beaten whiners United. Once again they have proved what sore losers they are. Everyone whined about "controversial" free kick from which we've scored only goal of the game. They forgot to whine about Ninja Evan's karate kick that broke Drogba's rib.
Lamps got away with a potential penalty against us when ball stroke his arm, ref nor linesmen missed it.
I watched game twice on Manure TV, its' amazing how biased commentators are. Especially that old geezer "commentator" who keeps on whining about everything and keeps on saying "dear me". Example? Carvalho gets chopped after the whistle by one of the lumberjacks that play for United... Ol' geezer goes on not about the fault but about how many times Riccy rolled on the ground.. Soviet propaganda machine would be jealous of Manure TV... second time on (week later) they chopped game to pieces.. gone was ninjas kick, and so many other chops by the lumberjacks.
No wonder so many United fans are as whiny as their manager and players, by far worst team from this regard in EPL.
All this said, it's nice to know that for whole 2 weeks they can't do anything about it and surely will have a extra pint or two if Everton can manage to snatch a point from them.
Liverpool and Rafa hosting Citeh this weekend, not even sure whom to place a bet on. So many injuries for reds to deal with.. At times I feel sorry for them, then again, at times I love it ;)
International break brought in more controversy than ever. Henry's hand ball and calls for a replay, once again highlighted need for some sort of video replay. Surely Blatter will not bend to the pressure and maintain that it's just part of the game. Yup, all we can see now is that if you cheat you win.. "fairplay" my a$$. Feel Irish pain today, it's a horrible way to loose.
Russia's dream of playing in South Africa next year was smashed to smithereens when 2 players got red carded. On for being kicked, other for pushing out of the way opposing player that was "warming up"... It must have been Ovrebo in disguise, surely there can't be yet another inept referee!
Tomorrow we're going against Wolves, with Drogs, Lampard, Ballack and Deco missing, we might see some young blood in action. Even Kakuta made it to the bench.. could it be his debut?

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Double, double

Nope, it's not related to Pizza chain. Folks it GTA (Greater Toronto Area) will be familiar with it. We've had 2 fantastic doubles in the game vs Athletico.
Whole game was a bit of a bore to me. First half was frustrating to watch. all but one header, Kalou looked out of place. Joe Cole was completely invisible, but then again, it would be very hard to repeat his performance from previous game. There was no space given to run around the field and perform tricks, nor we could shoot from distance. Drogba did came close to scoring first from a well struck free kick. Did you notice his technique? He likes to side-foot the ball now, I did read somewhere that he is trying to imitate Ronaldo and at times it is working. Keeper did well to save dipping shot.
Petr Cech once again had a brain cramp and decided to go for a ball which would have been cleared by the Chelsea defender. He tends to make bonehead decision once in 3 games, hopefully he has gotten it out of his system as ManU is visiting Bridge this Sunday.
It must have been a stroke of genius by the new Athletico coach to not start Aguero. Once he came on, game has changed in favor of Spanish team. I must admit that this time he did look much better, a player that might be worth all of them millions of pounds we were willing to pay for him this past summer. In any case, his first goal was nothing but pure class. Beautiful volley from an attempted clearance header. Petr had no chance. Deco had similar chance later on and failed miserably...
We were very close to our first defeat in Champions League this season, Aguero's goal came in late. All Athletico had to do is hold on for 10 minutes! Then there was Drogba. He turned game on it's head, scoring twice in 7 minutes. Power, speed, control were displayed by him in both instances, certainly a delightful double.
To Athletico credit, they didn't give up and continued to press for the equalizer. Aguero was as industrious as ever. He does seem to have tendency to go down fast when confronted by opposing defenders, but it worked for him in this game. Once again he won a free kick in teh dangerous position. What came next was another example of his quality. Well placed shot over the wall curled into the corner of the goal. Petr had no chance once again. Yet another delightful double, even tough this one came from the opposing player.
Game ended shortly, single point was enough to ensure Chelsea progress to the last 16 of the Champions League. Well done.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

8 past Bolton and Madrid road trip

October ended on a fantastic note, we've dismantled Bolton twice in one week with the combined score of 8 to 0. Midweek clash was a Carling Cup game. We've completely dominated Bolton, with Joe Cole having complete freedom on the pitch, tormenting Bolton's defense.
Kalou started the proceedings with well placed header but was substituted during the half time, apparently due to injury.
Bolton sat deep and allowed Chelsea players time and space for long shots. If not for Bolton's keeper, it would have been 8 - 0 after first game. Daniel Sturridge was unlucky not to score and seemed quite eager to do so in front of the sold out crowd. It was his first appearance. Perhaps he is lacking a little bit of confidence and he is trying way too hard. He should relax a bit more and try to enjoy his chances, his career is just beginning and he seems to be quite promising understudy. Malouda whom is not a subject of constant complaining about his performances, Deco who is loving his life in London and Drogba who came on late in the game, all anded up scoring. If not for Hillario's injury, night in the goal was uneventful. Btw, he is recovering well and afaik he is with the in Madrid tonight.
Saturday's game was more tense affair, well until Drogba ha been brought down in the penalty area. Harsh red card to Bolton's Jlloyd Samuel changed game completely. Frank Lampard has not missed penalty in three years, we were up by one going into the half time break.
Second half was once again dominated by Chelsea. Deco scored his second in as many games. I felt Ivanovic was unlucky not to get on the score-sheet, after all, he did score earlier in the game but goal was not allowed due to Chelsea player blocking keepers vision, you see player was in an offside position when Branislav hit the ball. His second effort was deemed to be an own goal by Knight. Ivanovic has been doing superb job to fill in for injured Bosingwa.
Drogba, once again, completed the rout. This goal takes his tally to 9 goals this year, once back from Liverpool's El Nino. Race for golden boot is on and Drogs has great chance to win it this season.

November starts with important game in Madrid. If we do take care of Athletico tonight we will clinch spot in last 16 of the UEFA Champions League. Surely this would be a boost going forward, especially with the game against United coming up this Sunday. But first we have to win, and this will not be easy as we're going against very good offensive team (even though they are having very hard time scoring right now). Forlan and certain Aguero are potential match winners in any game. Canadian fans will remember Aguero from 2007 U-20 World Cup Argentinian squad. this said, Aguero didn't look good in previous game against us, then again, not many players do ;)

Monday, October 26, 2009

Belletti shines in diamond light

After the Aston Villa loss, we looked a bit shaken up. With upcoming Champions League game coming up and Blackburn next (this past) weekend we needed to bounce back. And bounce we did! Not sure if this was due to "hairdryer" treatment or the fact that Chelsea squad has remained intact for as long as it has, we've netted total of 9 goals past two games!
 At times I feel that we rely too much on Bosingwa and Ashley Cole, both games, neither of them started with Ivanovic, Zhirkov and Belletti filling in.
 Juliano has been outstanding in both games. His drive, determination and experience overshadows his age. Employed as rightback and leftback in both games he's been player that supplied energy,timely tackles and descent crosses into the box. To me, he certainly outperformed Deco, whom takes some time to get into the game and seems a bit sluggish at times. He (Deco) tends to dwell on the ball and to looses it easily if the opposition has enough determination.
Other player that I feel is a bit off is Essien. Nobody can question his work ethic and determination, I do question is rushed passing. As of late, he seems to be on a different wavelength when compared to rest of the team. His passes seem rushed and usually end up at the opponents feet. Perhaps he should try lobbing ball over players versus going through them?
Enough with negativity, we've scored whopping 9 goals during past few games!
Lampard is back on the scoring sheet with 3 goals. Could this mean that he is finally comfortable with the Carlo's Diamond?
Kalou did a fantastic job during the week in the absence of suspended Drogba. Certainly deserved a hat trick but his shocking early miss vs Athletico enssured that he walked away without it. As TV commentator said:
"Who needs Drogba when you have Kalou?"
Joe Cole started against Blackburn and made immediate impact. It was evident how much we have missed his tricks and flicks of the ball and his imagination in general. It was perfect game to start. Blackburn came in to defend only, which is never a good idea at the Bridge :)
Anelka is proving to be an amazing signing, he seems to be loving his football. Pace, versatility and fantastic work with a combination of lethal strike should be good enough to describe Nicolas.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Riccy Carvalho's day off

Second loss of the season was not expected to happen this fast. We seem to try and emulate Liverpool whenever we can. After abismal performance against Wigan, which even Toronto Maple Leafs would be jealous off, Chelsea had a fantastic game against Liverpool. Game this past Saturday exposed some holes that were supposed to be patched by Guus. We were beaten by two set pieces, 2 corner kicks to be exact. Scolari can be proud as his legacy lives on....
 First goal came after slight deflection by Frank Lampard. He tried to clear the ball, but inadvertently   helped it into the path of well positioned Dunne whom was completely unmarked. He did appear to be Riccy's man. One cannot blame Lamps in this situation and I suppose one could make an argument that Riccy was reacting to the original ball velocity.. That might be, but most likely it is due to mixed up assignments by Chelsea defenders.
 Second goal was even worse. Once again it was horrible defending of the corner. This time, Petr was caught in " no man's land"... Only if Petr would decide to stay in the net... it was well taken corner away from Chelsea keeper and straight into the path of Villa defender whom didn't miss. Once again it was a free header. Could Riccy be blamed for this one too?
 Form there on, we did have more than one chance. Deco in particular, could have easily scored but his shot, if you can call it that, was weak and straight at the keeper. Anelka was guilty of shooting straight at the keeper on more than one occasion.
 Could it be that Chelsea players relaxed too early after Drogba's goal? If anything it seemed that Villa wanted to win more. Perhaps we should stop re-signing everyone to all of them crazy extensions and give chance to some youngsters.
 Whatever it is it sux and should be dealt with, the sooner the better. Perhaps some corner practices could be useful, we did have like 10 of them...
 Overall, Carlo's diamond was too narrow against Villa, with 2 wingers sitting on the bench I was surprised to see that we didn't even try to change formation. This Saturday I truly missed Jose...

Friday, October 16, 2009

Signings and appeal

While Kalou and Alex signing new deals is a welcome sign, personally I am waiting on Joe Cole to put pen and paper to new contract. Some predicted that youngsters will get a chance to play but it seems this transfer ban is benefiting established players instead.
 It's good to see that ones of Stoch and Di Santo are doing well and should be welcome additions when loan spells have completed. At this point I am not sure who's going to be back in January, we'll need hot striker to replace African Cup bound Drogba. While Anelka should be able to cope, it will be nice to have another option.
 In a mean time, we're officially appealing transfer ban. Hopefully this circus will be over soon. Naturally I am hoping for complete ban overturn, but for some reason I feel it will be just reduced... Hopefully I am wrong.

Canoe trip and trashing of LFC

I am back. It was very good canoe trip, fall colours are spectacular...

It was slightly cold, made me realise that it is very important to have appropriate gear for this type of adventure. Lots of portages, got to "meet" couple of moose:

Interesting creatures they are, little bit scary paddling right next to it though, when you know there is not help near by and closes vehicle is at least 3 hours away.
 Rain was unwelcome but in October one cannot expect not to get wet during such trips.
 Got back to the "civilization" tired and smelling of smoke, we stopepd at a pub for some dinner fairly late at night, was afraid even to think at what might have happened in the morning at Stamford Bridge...
 Since I live in hockey crazed country, it took good hour for TSN finally show highlights of the game... Let me say that I got few odd looks when I screamed loud "YES! Way to go boys!"... It didn't matter, I was happy as a fat kid in the candy store!
 Finally got to see complete game following Wednesday, for some strange reason Setanta decided to show Chelsea TV at 3am EST.. Call me crazy, but I woke up, watched teh game and went back to sleep for a few extra hours. you know, to me it was worth it. What a fantastic performance by Chelsea... how good was our defence, especially in the first. It took "mighty" Liverpool 29 minutes to have first shot on the net! It could have been me in the net instead of Hilario (not a good idea).
 Surely we were lucky not to concede, especially when Yossi missed sure goal, but it doesnt' matter, this is football. If you can't hit the net, you don't deserver a goal.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Youngsters win, vets seem to be upset about it...

That is correct, injected with youth Chelsea team beat QPR, early last week, to book a place in 4th round of Carling Cup.
 Borini, promising Italian striker has made his debut along with Sam Hutchinson, who's been with Chelsea since his 8th birthday. Young defender did well in place of certain john Terry.
 Nearly forgotten Paulo Ferreira started his first game for some time along with ones of Zhirkov and Joe Cole. Kalou had number of chance and converted one of them with a well placed shot. There were number of other chances to score, Borini's and Joe Coles chances come to mind.

 All was well, Bridge was singing... Evil Wigan, was plotting against us!

Truth be told, I've missed game against Wigan. Live feed was nowhere to be found, commies at CRTC rejoice! In this day of age, with all of the technology, we still do not have choice to watch all of the games live. Heck, I'll pay for it, surely others will too. In any case, I have missed what seem to be quite horrible Chelsea performance. Drogba called it his "worst game in Chelsea shirt".. Our beloved Captain wasn't happy with our work ethic. Wigan fans gloat, and they should be doing so.
 My first thought was, "oh no, Scolari, all over again..." Fair or not to Ancelotti, I can't help myself. Chelsea brought this type of thinking on to themselves! All of them managerial changes.
 Then I tough, it's just veteran players having a "hissy fit". Being unhappy with not being played at all times, they miss Jose's "untouchable's".
 Don't think that I'll be watching replay of this game. Only if Setanta would broadcast Chelsea TV NOT at 2am. You know, some people don't have PVR and have to wake up for work! I feel victimized! Whaaaa!
 Oh, last but not least. Petr decided to get a red card and get suspended. Fantastic! We're playing certain team in red this weekend, the one from Liverpool. Guess Turnbull will be sitting on the bench for this one.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Kenyons departure and spanking of Spurs

Rumors were going on for some time that Kenyon will be leaving Chelsea. Some blogs were expecting him to resign right after FA Cup victory. I suppose negotiations went on longer than expected... Mr. Kenyon will still represent CFC's interest as a non executive director. With his contacts in UEFA he is best person suited to resolve whole Kakuta ban mess. It is his mess to deal with regardless, whatever happens on your watch is your responsibility.
Don't think I can complain about his tenure, team is "almost" profitable, we've established ourselves as a force in EPL and Europe. Top three became top four with Chelsea as a member of the elite club. I am not crediting Kenyon with all of success, it's up to the boys on the pitch and countless managers we've had. Best thing Kenyon did is to hire Jose, it's too bad whole thing went sour eventually. in any case, farewell to Peter, see you in Manchester City in a year or two.
I don't know much about gentleman taking over Kenyon's job, thus not going to comment about him.
Over the weekend, I had to order yet another channel to be able to watch Chelsea game live. I am sick and tired not being able to watch EPL and Cup games on demand. Technology allows it, it's been proven to us during last World Cup, you could watch any game you want, whenever you want. Football lovers paradise....
Back to the game. I was worried prior to it, Spurs started very well and lost only to United. Defoe has been scoring like a madman and whole team has pace to be envious of. How would we cope with it? Will Petr have another brain cramp? Will ref be as biased as that silly Dane?
All questions were answered during the game. Ashley's header was fantastic. All thanks to Bosingwa bombing up and down the field. I can't believe how much energy him and Ashle have. I think I know why they are so damn fit.. ;) Did you see Bosingwa's shot that hit the corner of the net? Fantastic.. too bad it wasn't a goal.
Second goal was due to fantastic team effort and never die attitude Chelsea players display every game. Lamps recovered what seem to be dead ball and Ballack did well to press into the box to score.
Third goal was Drogba's ability and his pace. Surely he go lucky, but that's part of it all. Perhaps, we were lucky when Riccy's tackle on Keane was not punished, with a penalty. Certainly I've seen penalties given for players going down with no contact whatsoever... But it's certainly Spurs are lucky when refs missed a handball in the box. Penalties certainly cancel each other.
In the end, it's great to see Spurs spanked, they will do well to break into top 6 this year.
On to Carling Cup this Wednesday, wish me luck trying to find game broadcast anywhere in Canada.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

UEFA Diving League has started!

Have you noticed how fast Eduardo's ban has been overturned? Watching first games from the UEFA Diving Legue, oh I am sorry, Champions League made it all clear. If they'd ban Eduardo, they would have to ban at least 10 more players... Not sure whom should be getting Gold medal for best dive though. Seria A always put out strong teams full of capable divers followed by strong contenders from Portugal and Spain. We all know whom the usual suspects are, there is no real need to mention them again and again. Seriously, why is so called best league in the World is a showcase for divers and sub par refereeing?
In any case, the show is on the road. First points have been earned, we've earned our is an ugly display against Porto. Past couple of years we have been known to start slow, this time it was weather and few suspensions to blame. It's been a while since I was cursing at the players during the game as much as this game. Way too many missed passes, awkward tackles and unnecessary yellow cards. Ref's performance was descent, don't think he can't be blamed for any yellows.
Nicolas Anelka has made his mark and scored all important goal. On the night he was one of the better players. His pace troubled Porto's defense and it was quite nice touch to score on the rebound. Petr Cech also was one of the stars of the night. He made number of key saves to keep his well deserved shutout. End of the game was a bit alarming to me. Porto was pressing for equalizer and we've failed to keep the ball. I also thought that we actualy lacked pace. Ballack's performance was great but his age is starting to show. Bosingwa was certainly missed.
Carlo said it's good to win ugly, how true.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Petrs brain cramp, Gael and shadow of Ovrebo

Starting new job and all that good stuff leaves you with less time to blog :)

Quite a few tings went on since my last post, FIFA handed Chelsea a transfer ban, we've won few more games, England qualified for the World Cup...

It's Monday night and I JUST watched Stoke game. Wife wanted to go to this huge antique sale, which we did. Unfortunately I've missed all live games, things we do for our better halves.

Speaking of the Stoke game, Kalou's yellow card for "blocking" Rory "I have no skill" Delap's throw, was it just? I am not aware of the rule where you have to stand back few meters away and allow a throw from a sideline (similar to indoor soccer rules).
Overall, refs performance was not bad, certainly it cannot be compared to Ovrebo's so called "performance". Speaking of Champions League, we're playing Porto tomorrow. Drogs and Bosingwa has to sit this one out due to suspensions after last game vs Barcelona. Whatever happened with Ovrebo? Slap on a wrist or a pat on the back? His shadow looms large over the Bridge, ref tomorrow evening will be under the microscope. Hopefully he will make us forget the pain every Chelsea fan has experienced during Barca's game. Platini must have been happy though. Enough about that, it brings bad memories and desire to avoid Champions League games in future. Heineken, sorry but I will not be buying any of your beer any time soon ;)
Back to the Stoke game. Did Petr have a brain cramp or what? Past few years he has been known to make silly mistakes, this certainly another one. Hopefully he's got it out of his system. We can't afford any mental lapses against Porto, good start is crucial to our goal of winning the CL.

FIFA's ban was a bit of a surprise, wasn't it? I wonder how Gael feels, he can't play either... why punish player 2 years later? He was 16 year old kid and even if he did breach his so called contract, surely there are other ways to make a point or punish so called guilty parties. I feel your pain Gael and don;t worry, you'll be playing soon and surely will be impressing Carlo and rest of the World.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Ballack as a makeshift winger

Against slower Fulham FC, it might have been stroke of Carlo's genius by using Germany's captain as a makeshift winger. I was a bit surprised to be honest. To me, he seems to drift to the middle of the pitch a bit too much, thus end up out of position and not provide required width. Overlapping runs by Bosingwa made things less painful and somewhat effective. I certainly cannot complain about Balalck's work rate and his defensive ability, he's nothing but a class act and deserves his spot in the starting lineup.

With Joe Cole not being able to play, Sinclair on loan, Carlo doesn't have much choice but to experiment. Kalou is probably best choice due to his pace.

Essien seems to be preferred to play in holding role perhaps Zhirkov could be played on the right? Probably not as he is left footed. Does this mean that we could be in for a right wing player as a potential transfer target? Harry Redknap seems to be keen on our Joe, rumors of 20 million dollar bid popping in British papers like spring flowers. If that is the case, I wonder why there is such delay? To see if Joe' rehab is completed successfully?

Question is, who will start on the right side of the diamond against Burnley? No chance it would be Matic, could it be Deco? Most likely it will be Kalou, he must be getting used to this position by now.

Speaking of Matic, I should welcome him aboard, glad that yet another non 30+ year old has joined CFC. Hopefully he will get his first start soon!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

9 minutes of pain

We should have been leading after first minute, but somehow Drogs managed to miss the net. What a start this would have been for Carlo and Drogs! Surely it was some "rust", which must have accumulated around our polished striker during summer holliday.

Hunt, who has been with the Hull City team only for matter of hours, has been given a starting role. He is a feisty player and if this would not have been first game of the season, he might have gotten a red card for a raised foot against Lampard. Every time Hunt touches the ball, chorus of boos echo around the Bridge. Understandable, it was Hunt's knee that knocked out Petr Cech few seasons ago.

Chelsea looks pretty dangerous on the counters, but team seems a bit flat and lacking width. Carlo likes his diamonds, but this formation is yet to ingrain in the minds of Chelsea players. Too many passes go awry, Anelka showing a bit of the same rust that is affecting Drogba. His positioning seems a bit off.

During one of the Hull City's attacks, ball bounces in the Chelsea box and eventually comes to Hunt who does not make a mistake and scores. What a start for him and what a pain for any Chelsea fan to see him score!

Hull has been defending pretty well whole game by putting every man behind the ball. We had so much trouble with breaking teams that used same tactic last season which ultimately cost us EPL title and Scholari his job.

Mikel wins us a free kick close to the box, Lamps and Drogs standing beside the ball as possible kick takers. Whistle, Drogs runs up and places the ball perfectly, game is tied! Hull led for whole 9 minutes. It certainly was 9 minutes of pain.

Ballack comes on for Mikel during the intermission. This should provide us with more of an attacking impetus, but then again, Essien surely will take over Mikel's spot, thus hang back.

Anelka should have scored in the first minute of the second half! Dejavu all over again, few more chances right after that, no goal, must be the rust....

Holly cow, is that Carvalho bombing down the filed along side Anelka? He looks 20 years old. This shows how much we've missed him last season, glad he's healthy and hungry again.

We continue to press, but goal eludes us, must be that damn rust again. Ball possession in second half is 65% for Chelsea. TV commentators keep on mentioning our inability to break down teams last year. Wonder why they keep on mentioning that, thought pops into my mind that they like to torment Chelsea fans. Another thought is to mute the volume, but then I will not be able to hear the crowd... Here is an idea, ability to mute commentators only, not the sounds from the crown and the game.

Attacks, clearances, missed chances. At one point, ball bounces in the Hull box like a pinball, yet we fail to score. Ancelotti trows in Deco for Malouda. Move provides no change in luck.

Hunt being substituted, while he is walking to the bench, crowd saying good bye to him by chanting "Wanker, wanker", I agree with them.

Kalou comes on for Anelka and should have scored with his first touch but he managed to direct his header over the net. 10 minutes to go in the game, my stomach is in my throat but i am still remaining hopeful that we can get a win.

Perhaps Hull should have scored few minutes before the 90th minute mark. Cech and Hull player both receive lengthy treatments by phisio after ball clearing collision at the top of the box.

Refs adding 6 minutes of added time, good news to Chelsea faithful. Game goes one as it went on, Chelsea pressing, Hull defense creaking but holding on. Deco comes close to scoring but misses the net. Oh the agony! We should be winning by at least 2 goals....

I've made peace with idea of a tie when came a breakthrough. Deco's pass finds Drogba, whom appears to attempt a cross from an acute angle, ball sails over the keeper into the net, what a chip it turned out to be. Bridge is in frenzy, 2 - 1 Chelsea. Drogs salutes his extended contract with 2 goal salvo, well done.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Lightning doesn't strike twice at the same place

I can't wait for this Saturday, EPL season to start. It will be an early wake up call for me, 7:40am. Not a problem, I miss my early Saturday wake ups, to watch games. When you think about it, it can be perfect beginning to the day (especially if we win ;))
In any case, we're going against Hull, whom surprised more than one EPL team last year. Will this happen this year it remains to be seen, as they say, lightning doesn't strike twice at the same place, right? Surely Chelsea will not make same mistake and take their opponent seriously, especially when the news of certain Hunt joining them from Reading. You know that "helmet" that Cech is sporting, it's due to mr. Hunt. I am hoping that he will not play, as retaliation might be at hand.
As a Chelsea fan, I'd expect us to beat Hull at any given day, but i am not expecting 3-0 win as some pundits do. I'll be happy with 3 points period. 3-0 or 1-0, win is a win and that's all that matters.

I am amused to see reports of Liverpool boys chatting up their EPL crown expectations. Sure, they should be building on last year, but can they be as lucky as last year? How many games were rescued by late goals? What will Liverpool do if Gerrard or Torres is injured? No doubt they have great team and great players, but beyond first team, do they have enough coverage to challenge for the EPL crown they so desire?
Benitez is an amazing coach, some would call him footballing genius, but will that be enough to wrestle EPL crown from United? I'd expect Liverpool be less lucky, the lightning doesn't strike at the same place twice...

Whole notion of lighting not striking twice is a bs, really, if you look at United, they have done it 3 times and are looking at fourth consecutive win. Fergie wants it, United fans want it (and probably expect it, those arrogant bastids) and surely United players want it, but do they have enough firepower to get it done? Time will show, time doesn't lie. Post Ronaldo era is upon us. Will Valencia and Owen be enough to replace Ronnies goals. Perhaps, but I'd say no. Everyone knows that Owen is one tackle away from the hospital bed and Valencia cannot compare to Ronnie, he is a different fish. Oh, Tevez isn't there to rescue them either... I wonder if it really was a Fergie whom wanted to sell Tevez who is a real fire starter, a spark plug if you will. Surely he will be missed by United. All this said, United seems to be weaker than last year and if you consider that we have not lost any first team players this year, we should have an advantage.
Since we came close to EPL title quite close past couple of years, as a Chelsea fan I am hoping that lightning doesn't strike twice and we can win it again. Oh yes, same could be said about Champions League... we have been close but haven't taste champagne from the cup yet... YET! :)

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

United fans showing true color?

Wow, I can't believe all of the vile that comes from Manchester United loyal. Surely not all of them, but it seems that way. One would think that Ovrebo was a ref and they just lost important Champions League game!
Controversy is due to Ballacks "elbow" on Evra whom went down like a sack of potatoes "injured". You see, Fergie and so many others believe that ref should have stopped the game as he did earlier when Evra stepped on Ballack. 2 incidents have been dissected more than once and are not the same.
First incident, Evra retained the ball, second ball came to United player who not only didn't kick it out of bounds but tried to continue attack, it just happened that he lost it and in the end Lampard scored.
After the game, Fergie even confronted ref and later on said it should have been a red card, well I suppose it's lucky for Chelsea that Fergie was not refereeing game himself, surely he'd be best ref to ever step on the pitch.
Word hypocrisy comes to mind. If United would go on and score, would we hear even one word about this so called "elbow"? I don't think so. You see, United lost! We didn't bow in front of their greatness and ref had different point of view than Fergie. The fact is, ref saw challenge in plain view and chose not to call it. If anything Chelsea fans have learned from Ovrebo, is to live with refs decisions, no matter how hard it might be. Perhaps Fergie and United fans should try that instead of being so arrogant and whiny. Some even went on to call Ballack a "Cheating C**t"...
United fans showing their true color?

Monday, August 10, 2009

So far so good for Carlo

It was nice to escape to sunny Cuba for a week as huge amounts of water continue to come down from Havens, here in Ontario. Since my "off grid" plan is yet to come to any sort of fruition, I was worried that we will loose power and I will not be able to watch replay of a Community Shield.
What a cracking game it turned out to be! We had a bit of everything, bad and good goals, missed and fantastic saves, crunching tackles, controversy and First ref bashing by Fergie.
I was a little surprised to see Ivanovic to start ahead of Bosingwa and was glad to see Carvalho (eventual man of the match) back in a starting lineup.

First half belonged to United. Nani was tormenting Ivanovic who struggled to cope with the pace and trickery of young Portuguese player, eventually picking up well deserved yellow card. Nani opened scoring with a cracking goal and seemed that he is ready to take over Ronaldos spotlight, however his night was prematurely terminated by John Terry's clean tackle. Nani walked off the pitch in a makeshift arm sling. After reading todays papers, he's got a bit of a dislocated shoulder and naturally looking for speedy recovery. Petr Cech probably should have had saved Nani's rocket, but he redeemed himself with number of great saves later on.

Berbatov had flashes of brilliance and came close to scoring on more than one occasion. He seem to have great understanding with Park whom looked dangerous early on.

Chelsea counters produced little to trouble Ben Foster with descent strikes from Drogba and Anelka. In general, many of passes were behind intended recipients and at times we looked a bit one dimensional with mainly wayward long crosses. Essien probably should have done better with his towering header attempt and Malouda's attempted volley from 2-3 meters also should have been a goal. We seemed slower than United and were loosing midfield battles. Lampard was well covered and was unable to influence game. It seemed to me that his positioning was a bit off with number of passes to/from him going to United players instead.

When first half came to an end I was quite happy that we were down by one and was hoping that we could do what we did against Everton, come back from behind and win the game.

Ivanovic was substituted for Bosingwa during half time, logical choice due to yellow card and pace that Bosingwa offers. Not sure what Carlo told his troops, but Chelsea was a different team, we've started to control tempo and had number of descent attacks. During one of such attacks, somehow Lampard retained ball with 3 United players around him but he managed to pass to Malouda who attempted to flick ball to Drogba, whom nearly got nice punch from Ben Fosters weak clearance, which ended up on in the net after diving Carvalho's header. It was a scrappy goal but a goal nonetheless, game was tied. Blue side of Wembley was in frenzy...

Mikel was substituted for Ballack whom seem to continue his spat with Evra. Two exchanged harsh tackles, one which earned Evra yellow card. Then came moment when Ballack blocked off Evra, in plain refs view. Fergie deemed that an elbow later on, in any case, Evra was sprawled on the pitch "injured" while ball came to Rooney who didn't kick ball out of bounds but tried to continue United attack. Few seconds later he lost the ball to the Chelsea player, then ball ended up at Drogba's feet whom cleverly took 2 defenders with him while flicking ball to Frank Lampard. Lamps didn't make a mistake, he shot ball with enough power that it went through Fosters hands into the net. United players were furious and surrounded the ref. It was interesting to watch that Rooney was playing a peacemaker, quite a contrast to Rooney we know. Complaints fell on deaf ears, goal stood. You see, United felt that ref should have blown a whistle, just as he did earlier when one of the United players stepped on Ballack. Evra's "injury" evaporated quite fast when he jumped up to argue with the ref, and reds have audacity to call Ballack a cheat. Just think of elbow on Drogba earlier in the game! He didn't go on moaning to the ref, instead he got up and went on with the game.

Fergie fumed and eventually threw on 4 fresh players. Them move has worked, United started to press and eventually Rooney showed his world class when he tied the game, it was 90th minute. He banged his chest and United badge in front of Chelsea fans triumphant! Game was going to penalties...

Penalties is something that Chelsea fans hate. It was Terry's miss that cost us Champion League in Moscow.. It has been years since we won a shootout.

Lampard was first to shoot. It was clinical finish, Foster had no chance. Lamps grabbed the ball and held it above his head to show it to all United fans.
Ryan Giggs, Mr. United himself, took first spot kick for United. Petr saves with his feet!
Ballack was second to shoot, it was a beauty, as good of a spot kick as you'd ever see.
Carrick for United didn't miss. It was 2-1 for Chelsea at this point.
Drogba for Chelsea. Once again, memories of Moscow come flooding. Drogs got a red card and had no chance to take a spot kick then, will he score now? Answer is yes, yet another clinical finish by Drogs. 3-1 Chelsea!

I am not sure why Evra was chosen to shoot next? When I saw him come up to the spot I was quite happy that Rooney wasn't taking it next. Evra blew it, spot kick lacked power and Cech correctly guessed direction.
Next was Kalou and he didn't make a mistake. 4-1, Chelsea win first trophy of the season, so far so good for Carlo.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Can this week get any better?

Quite a week it has been! Malouda signed new 3 year deal. Since it's his 3rd year in EPL, we are expecting great things from Florent. No more excuses can be made in regards to the "adaptation and pace" of EPL. If he will continue to perform same way as during second half of last season, Zhirkov got a battle on his hands for the starting role. Speaking of Zhirkov, he's yet to get work permit. As a potential KGB agent it's understandable that all precautions must be taken before permit is granted...

To keep re-signing ball rolling, Obi Mikel has agreed to new 5 year deal with us. News of potential deal have been all over the web, yet some papers still ran stories that Mikel is on the brink of leaving Chelsea. Trust but verify mentality should be applied to everything that has been printed in media.

No we're hearing of potential new 3 year deal for Drogs. As we all know, Drogs has been rumored to be re-uniting with Jose for some time now. Well, he kinda did, when we played Inter in California at the Rose Bowl in front of eighty one thousand (81000) spectators. Yet "columnist" such as John Cross still managed to declare No wonder Soccer is not taking off in America. I think word MUPPET should be good enough description of Mr.Cross. Do read comments, they are priceless.

Speaking of our "friendly" with Inter. Things seemed to be quite hot with few pretty ugly tackles flying around, Vieira battle with Mikel comes to mind. In any case, we beat Inter 2 to nil. Naturally Jose declared that he is not worried, but he does look much older and tired. What happened to stylish Jose we all knew? Gone is the tie and nice suit, instead he was sporting pretty ugly tee/jersey. He even threw in Ibrahimovich for last 20 minutes or so, surely his last game for Inter.

I've also learned that myself and Goddess that is Charlize Theron have something in common, we both support Chelsea! Can this week get any better??! Perhaps! Not so trustworthy British papers report that JT might break the silence and commit his future to Chelsea, now that certainly be icing on top of the cake with a cherry!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Strikers galore.

In the global war, that is a transfer market, my money is on Chelsea. While regime change in Madrid spurred extraordinary spending spree, rumored $200 Million dollars of transfer funds available to Ancelotti, is mainly in tact. $36 Million went to Russia for Zhirkov and there will be a fee decided for Sturridge by the tribunal. Approx $160 Million is still generating interest.

We have been linked with all kinds of players, reading papers is becoming colossal waste of time.
According to papers, half of our squad wants to leave CFC. Most likely ones to go appear to be Sheva, Deco and Carvalho, Pizzaro.
Personally, I don't believe into any possibility of a deal with Inter Milan. Jose's departure left a sour taste in a mouth and with Ibra heading to Barcelona, with Eto going the opposite way we can put to bed any rumors of Drogs leaving. I'd be surprised if Carlo will sell Carvalho as we cannot afford potentially lose JT and Riccy at the same time. Rumors of JT's "unhappiness" are all over the papers/net. In a way, it seems like whole bid for Terry story is a reaction to the loss of Sturridge, eye for an eye if you will. Sparky is getting dangerously close to being reported to the FA for tapping up JT but he is not willing to give up the chase of our Captain. Very quickly, Citeh becoming most annoying kid on the block. They way they act, is starting to resemble rich fat and ugly kid that no girls want to be with, thus he is forced to spend large on bunch of floozies instead ;)

Ribery has an eye on Madrid, thus chances of him coming our way are slim to none, especially after reports that Bayern Munich are no longer pursuing Bosingwa.

Potential spot for transfer would be right wing player. Joe Cole is far from 100%, Kalou is not natural right winger. We have excess of strikers that could be used as a collateral for any potential deal.

All this said, it's hard to believe that we're going to sign yet another striker, especially when we have last years Nr'1 striker in Anelka and Drogba as quite formidable strike force. Not to mention Sturridge who showed what he can do against Sounders over the weekend.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Stoch loaned to FC Twente

Stoch joined Chelsea from Slovakian team Nitra in 2006, but the youngster has failed to make an impact at senior level so far. The young winger has made only four league appearances for the CFC in the past three seasons.
There were hopes that his fortunes will change this season but once again, Stoch has been loaned out to ex-England boss McClaren's side FC Twente. The-19-year old has signed 1 year loan deal.

Cole suffers another injury setback

Joe will miss Chelseas US tour due to yet another knee surgery.

"In light of his previous surgery, excellent rehab and recent return to full training, this is only a minor setback and we expect Cole to return to full training in approximately one month," the club's website ( said.

Cole ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament in an FA Cup tie against Southend United in January.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Nemanja Matic claims Chelsea contract

Nemanja Matic, dubbed "Serbian Vieira" claims that he accepted a 4 year contract with Chelsea, as reported by SKY.

Left footed 6.4ft central midfielder is only 20 years old and if this is true he will be yet another youngster joining Blues. Deal is not complete yet, as talks are ongoing about his transfer fee.

He has played twice for the full Serbian national team, the full 90 minutes against Poland last December and then 27 minutes of a friendly with Cyprus in February. A number of other clubs were interested in Matic including CSKA Moskow, Tottenham and Genoa but Chelsea seems to have won the race to sign him.

Matic's signing would indicate that Chelsea is in next stage of evolution. Veteran core squad would help nurture future stars.

Guess Fergie will not be able to claim that Chelsea is old, but surely he will find something else to moan about, just like the other day when he claimed "transfer market madness". Madness which he helped to create by buying Berbatov for 60 Million dollars and selling Ronaldo for 160 Million.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Zhirkov is a blue

Carlo Ancelotti's first signing is PFC CSKA Moskva's Yuri Zhirkov. Dubbed "Russian Ronaldinho" he is certainly a versatile player who can operate anywhere on a left side. He was played out of position by Guus during Euro in 2008 as a left back but natrally is a left-sided midfielder.
The 25-year-old started his career with FC Spartak Tambov. His first coach Valeri Sharapov spotted Yuri's gift. "His control of the ball is a natural gift," he said. "Even after training, he stayed outside to play with his friends and went to sleep with the ball." In 2001 he had trials with FC Lokomotiv Moskva and FC Spartak Moskva having a look over him before CSKA snapped him up.
He won the Russian Super Cup on his debut for the club in March 2004. Zhirkov went on to win two Premier-Liga titles, three Russian Cups and the 2004/05 UEFA Cup with the CSKA.

CSKA and Serbia midfielder Krasić said: "For me, Yuri is the best footballer in Russia. At the Euro, he showed his class to the world. He also played consistently for the club. I am not surprised Chelsea came in for him. Zhirkov is totally worth it."

There are number of other positive endorcements.
Tottenham's Roman Pavlyuchenko said, "Zhirkov is a great professional. He could become a team leader. The only problem is his knowledge of the English language. If he masters that, all will be well."

Former Manchester United player Andrei Kanchelskis said: “Quality wing players are always appreciated in England. In addition, the main thing in this country is to fight for the whole 90 minutes. Even if you don't succeed, the fans take to you if they see you giving everything for the whole match. They realise you're playing for the shirt and not just taking their money.”

“You don't have to be friends with him (Zhirkov) to realise he is quality, hard-working and modest,”

He added: “He's no poser. And this is sure to be appreciated in his new club. They will like his inexhaustible desire to play football and give 100 per cent.

“Zhirkov can light up the Premier League as vividly as Arshavin. But he must understand that it will be difficult. Eventually everything will be OK. He has enough talent.”

After passing medical exam, Yuri had this to say:
"I'm in a perfect mood right now as I like the way people have welcomed me into the club.

"Although I haven't spent much time here, I have already seen that they have a friendly attitude towards me. I am looking forward to starting my career at Chelsea."

Welcome aboard Yuri, we're looking forward to you bombing down the left flank!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Carlo's first press conference

Carlo Ancelotti faced media for a first time as a Chelsea manager today. He must have surprised some with his good command of English language, which is a bit of scary resemblance to Scolari, whom also surprised few during his first press conference.
Carlo started with usual pleasantries, just as any other managers first press conference, he mentioned how nice 'It is nice to be here', how 'I am very happy to be here' and that he is looking forward to new 'adventure and opportunity'. 'I want today to speak English and learn English. For me today it is important' he added.
'I think in one month or two months I will speak better, it is not easy but I want to do this because I am in England now and I want a good relationship with all the press.' He seems like a determined person and there is little doubt that he will speak english very well. After all, practice makes perfect.
When asked about John Terry, he said 'I think that John Terry is symbol of this team,' with slight grin he continued, 'I don't know if he will be the captain next season..' then after slight pause 'naturally I am joking, I like to joke in the press conference', which borough chorus of laughter. 'He will be captain next time in the future, he is a symbol, he said that he wants to stay forever in Chelsea and we want to keep him forever, it's normal. Now there is a question of Manchester City, the price, for Terry, no price. There is no price for Terry. Terry will be the captain of Chelsea forever!'. This should put an end to ambitious Man City's attempt to lure JT to 'sunny Manchester'.
When asked about Pato or Maldini, Carlo said that he 'don't want to speak the name of the players. The Club controls the market, we have the time, if there is a good situation for us we can do something to improve things. Pato and Pirlo are Milan players'.
When asked if he thinks that there will be many changes, after quick glance at the translator he said 'no i don't think so, Chelsea is a great team now'. He wen't on to mention all of the Semi's we were in past 5 years and added 'If you can improve things, will be better for me and for the club. If it's not possible, I think that Chelsea have alot of chance to win'.
So far so good Carlo.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Another day, another signing.

This shouldn't come as a big surprise to anyone as this transfer has been well documented, Chelsea FC today has announced that Daniel Sturridge has signed a four year deal. 6 foot 2 forward started his career at Aston Villa with stint at Coventry. When he was 13 he joined Man City Academy where he remained until this year. At the end of the 2008–09 season, the Manchester City fans voted Sturridge as the Manchester City Young Player of the Season.
Signing of the 19 year old, should be welcomed by Chelsea fans as ageing squad is in need of some your injection. Daniels preferred position is forward and his is capable of playing on the wing.
Next order of the business for Carlo surely will be Zhirkov who's signing is highly anticipated within days.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

And first signing of the summer is.. Turnbull

Chelsea FC has made it's first signing of the summer by bringing 24 year old goalkeeper Ross Turnbull on a free transfer from Middlesbrough. This certainly contrasts with Real Madrid's signing spree but move does make sense. We needed a young understudy for Petr Cech as Hilario is 33 years old (he also signed extension to his contract today).
Ross has signed four-year contract.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Sheva to play in Qatar?

Interesting twist this might be if Chelsea board will decide not to pay Sheva's weekly wages (which are in range of 130 euros per week). Even for Chelsea this is a bit expensive, especially for a player that might have to watch most of the season from the bench.
Such wage demands seem not to be a problem for Qatari football club Al-Gharafa and they would welcome Sheva with open hands.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Chelsea, all is quiet on the transfer front?

While likes of Real Madrid making huge noise in the transfer market by splashing out huge amount of money on just two players, some Chelsea supporters view Chelsea's inactivity as a negative thing.
You see, we're not active enough and we've "failed" to bring in "established" name. For once we cannot be accused of ruining Football though...

Let's not get overly excited and when you think about it, Carlo Ancelotti will officially start working for CFC early July, yet we've been linked to ones of Pato, Ribery, David Villa, Maicon, number of Seria A soon to be geriatric players such as Pirlo and countless others.
When we examine what transpired so far is the situation that bad?
Yes, Deco is not happy and trying to go to Inter Milan. He is moaning and groaning about his "unhappiness" and about treatment of Scholari. Carvalho is strongly linked with the same move, both players would love to be reunited with Jose. We may or may not get player in return + cash, again only rumors so far but deal seems to be imminent.

Sturrige signing is all but done, tribunal will determine fee that we're to pay for the 19 year old. He surely will give us pace and another option in attack. His wage demands is another topic of discussion, but there is no denial that he's got loads of potential to shine.

Malouda has been resigned to a two year contracr, It most likely signals that we've failed to work out suitable deal for Ribery and that he will be going to Real Madrid, even though at the moment he is "not for sale". If this is the case, I'd expect Bosingwa to stay with us.

With Joe Cole back in action and possibility of adding Zhirkov, we might have winger situation sorted. It would be nice to see wingers as affective as Robben and Duff were under Jose.

"The Duck" Pato, said that he will speak to Ancelotti before deciding his future, thus speculation in regards to him staying at AC or coming to CFC is a bit premature.

Tevez saga, should be finished in 10 days, or so his agent says. Apparently we're in the running but realistically he'll probably join Man City, which would be pretty big win for Sparky.

Personally I'd prefer Chelsea fill in few positions that we lack enough cover for. Young keeper to be Petr's understudy would be great. We also should concentrate on younger players that could be developed and stay away from blockbuster deals even though, some fans might demand it. We have strong enough squad to compete for all of the trophies next season.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Could Sheva prove to be useful?

The other day I've read that Sheva intends to see through his contract with Chelsea FC until it's end. As you might know, former Ballon d'Or winner, has failed to live up to his 30 Million pound price tag.
His first year with Chelsea was plagued with injuries and he ended up sitting most of the season on the bench. Yet he amassed pretty respectable 9 goals. Year after that he has been loaned out back to the AC Milan after yet another Chelsea managerial change.

I do wonder if he could still make impact next season with Anchelotti in charge. Sheva reminds me a bit of Crespo, similar age, similar death touch around the net. Both have superb positioning. Some will say that Sheva has no pace for EPL or that he is not very physical. They may or may not be right. If deployed correctly and with proper support, Sheva's quality would outshine his "flaws".
This would be his second stint with Chelsea, expectations are not as high, media eye most likely will be focused on someone else, who knows it could be ones of Pato or David Villa (if things go our way). No one can question Sheva's vast experience and quality. It would be his own expectation and desire to prove that he's got what it takes. Question remains, will he be given another chance?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Chelseas Fixtures for 09/10 Season have been announced

List of potential fixtures in all competitions:

Sat Jul 18 Seattle Sounders A - pre-season

Tue Jul 21 Inter (in Los Angeles) - pre-season

Fri 24 Jul AC Milan (in Baltimore) - pre-season

Sun 26 Jul Club America (in Dallas) - pre-season

Sat Aug 1 Reading A - pre-season

Sun Aug 9 Man United (Community Shield at Wembley)


Wed Aug 12 International fixtures

Sat Aug 15 Hull City H

Tue Aug 18 Sunderland A

Sat Aug 22 Fulham A

Sat Aug 29 Burnley H

Sat 5 - Wed 9 Sep - International fixtures

Sat Sep 12 Stoke City A

Tue 15/Wed 16 Sep - Champions League group stage matchday 1

Sat Sep 19 Tottenham Hotspur H

Wed Sep 23 Carling Cup Round 3

Sat Sep 26 Wigan Athletic A

Tues 29 Sep/Wed 30 Sep - Champions League group stage matchday 2

Sat Oct 3 Liverpool H

Sat 10 Oct - Wed 14 Oct - International fixtures

Sat Oct 17 Aston Villa A

Tue 20/Wed 21 Oct - Champions League group stage matchday 3

Sat Oct 24 Blackburn Rovers H

Wed Oct 28 Carling Cup Round 4

Sat Oct 31 Bolton Wanderers A

Tue 3 Nov/Wed 4 Nov - Champions League group stage matchday 4

Sat Nov 7 Manchester United H

Sat 11 - Wed 14 Nov - International fixtures

Sat Nov 21 Wolverhampton Wanderers H

Tue 24 Nov/Wed 25 Nov - Champions League group stage matchday 5

Sat Nov 28 Arsenal A

Wed Dec 2 Carling Cup Quarter-Final

Sat Dec 5 Manchester City A

Tue 8/Wed 9 Dec - Champions League group stage matchday 6

Sat Dec 12 Everton H

Wed Dec 16 Portsmouth H

Sat Dec 19 West Ham United A

Sat Dec 26 Birmingham City A

Mon Dec 28 Fulham H

Sat Jan 2 FA Cup Round 3

Wed Jan 6 Carling Cup Semi-Final (1)

Sat Jan 9 Hull City A

Sun 10 - Sun 31 Jan - Africa Cup of Nations

Sat Jan 16 Sunderland H

Wed Jan 20 Carling Cup Semi-Final (2)

Sat Jan 23 FA Cup Round 4

Wed Jan 27 Birmingham City H

Sat Jan 30 Burnley A

Sat Feb 6 Arsenal H

Wed Feb 10 Everton A

Sat Feb 13 FA Cup Round 5

Tue 16/Wed 17 Feb - Champions League first knockout round - first leg (half the fixtures)

Sat Feb 20 Wolverhampton Wanderers A

Tue 23/Wed 24 Feb - Champions League first knockout round - first leg (half the fixtures)

Sat Feb 27 Manchester City H

Sun Feb 28 Carling Cup Final

Sat Mar 6 Portsmouth A orFA Cup Round 6

Tue 9/Wed 10 Mar - Champions League first knockout round - second leg (half the fixtures)

Sat Mar 13 West Ham United H

Tue 16/Wed 17 Mar - Champions League first knockout round - second leg (half the fixtures)

Sat Mar 20 Blackburn Rovers A

Sat Mar 27 Aston Villa H

Tue 30/Wed 31 Mar - Champions League quarter-final - first leg

Sat Apr 3 Manchester United A

Tue 6/Wed 7 Apr - Champions League quarter-final - second leg

Sat Apr 10 Bolton Wanderers H or FA Cup Semi-Final

Sat Apr 17 Tottenham Hotspur A

Tue 20/Wed 21 Apr - Champions League semi-final - first leg

Sat Apr 24 Stoke City H

Tue 27/Wed 28 Apr - Champions League semi-final - second leg

Sat May 1 Liverpool A

Sun May 9 Wigan Athletic H

Sat May 15 FA Cup Final

Sat 22 May - Champions League Final

Fri 11 Jun - Sun 11 Jul - World Cup Finals

Copyright © and Database Right 2009 The Football Association Premier League Ltd / The Football League Ltd. All rights reserved.

Compiled in association with Atos Origin. Fixtures are subject to change.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Transfer madness

Real Madrid is at it again, spending huge bucks on established stars in an attempt to cash in on shirt sales. Surely they have learned their lesson in the past that stars alone don't win championships and it is quite hard to keep them all happy. Each of them big stars must fit their ego into the dressing room, in a way it is a can of compressed air, make sure there are no leaks.
In any case, Kaka joined Real, smartly he didn't choose Man City and who could blame him? They could't crack even Europa league. Ronaldo (Fake Ronnie) is also on his way out of the Man United to team up with Kaka, good riddance. Was getting tired of seeing his whining antics.
There are number of rumors surrounding Chelsea. Apparently we have "lost the race" to sign Glen Johnson... hard to believe this story as we have number of defenders young and not so young that are not any worse than Glen. Speaking of which, Carvalho's future is also to be decided, he migth be heading to a reunion with Jose, along with Deco. Apparently he has lost joy for football at Chelsea after not being able to crack starting lineup under Guus. Both of players are becoming injury prone and had pretty horribles seasons. Italian "technical" league with slower pace and larger fields would be ideal to revitalize their careers.
Chelsea have bid and got a rejection from Byern, Frank Ribery is a target. United also trying to get him. We've also put a bid for David Villa... what an interesting signing he would be, it is unclear where he'd play though. Surely we'd have to sell a striker if we sign him. I'd be really surprised if we did though. Apparently he wants to play in Spain and getting an unhappy player might not be best option. Then again, Crespo wasn't super happy either but he had death touch around the net.
Pato is another target, who apparently "Wants to win everything with Milan". Sounds a like that statement has been practiced in front of the hotel bathroom mirror.
Shevchenko, our faded star is still on our books and is being shopped around in France..
Pizzaro saga will be interesting to watch also, he's been quite good on Germany and naturally would like to stay there, for the right price that is.
Drogba's contract is up in the air, apparently we want to get our hands on Swedish delight Ibrahimovich in some sort of exchange for Drogs? Interesting, if anything I'd go after Ballotelli, he's got size, skill and bright future.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Scolari gets a gig in... Uzbekistan?!

Reuters reports that former Chelsea manager Luiz Felipe Scolari has been named coach of Bunyodkor, the Uzbek champions said on Tuesday.

The 60-year-old World Cup winning coach, who was sacked by the west London Premier League club in February, has agreed an 18-month contract with the Uzbek side.

Scolari succeeds fellow Brazilian Zico, who led Bunyodkor to the league and cup double and Asian Champions League semi-finals last year before quitting in December to join CSKA Moscow.

Interesting choice for next gig isn't it?

“Uzbek football now creates its own success story, especially Bunyodkor with its remarkable dynamism and prospects for the past four years,” said Scolari.

“I know that I am in the right place at the right time and in the right team.”

Europa league to experiment with goal-line officials

Fifa has announced that matches in the Europa League – formerly the Uefa Cup – next season will be played with two extra assistant referees behind the goal-lines as part of an experiment instead of using any sort of technology. This move surely is a step into right direction and is a brainchild of Michel Platini. I do wonder how successfull this will be, especially when it is evident that referee numbers have been going down.

"The International FA board decided 'let's have experiments with two additional assistant referees' and we were looking where we can have such experiments. Now we have found a solution together with Michel Platini and Uefa," said the Fifa president, Sepp Blatter.

Surely Blatter is a man of his word, in 2006 he said:
"As long I am president, it will only be goal-line technology. Until I am no longer president, there will be no chance (for video replays)."

I am not arguing for replays, goal line technology should be enough (unless Ovrebo is a match ref), but it has been number of years and best they can come up with is 2 extra assistants?

I am counting the days until this dinosaur has moved on and allowed someone with progressive views to start process of bringing football in to 21st century.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Two year wait is over

At times it felt much longer than 2 years without silverware for Chelsea FC. How painful was it to watch Manchester United celebrate yet another Premier League win? It took more than one manager but only Dutch Magician managed to finally deliver! Perfect farewell present for all of us. I am still walking around with a silly grin, it gets wider once I think of celebrations after the game.

It was a cracking match, under sweltering +40C temperature, it was Everton who drew first blood in record breaking fashion. Move on Roberto Di Matteo, here comes Saha! It only took 25 seconds for Louis Saha to unleash unstoppable volley after weak clearance from Mikel. First record on this record breaking day, have fallen. Fastest goal in FA Cup final has been scored.

No matter what tv commentators we saying, Chelsea did not panic. Ball possession was key. Crisp passes, flank attacks. Malouda and Ashley Cole were starting to dominate Hibbert whom Moyes replaced during half time. One of the Malouda's crosses eventually found Didier Drogba who out muscled Lescott and unleashed textbook header into Evertons goal, 1-1. Drogba has a wonderful habbit of scoring in Finals. In fact he's first to score in new Wembley when Maurinho's Chelsea beat Manchester United two years ago.
It took 21 minutes to respond but respond we did. Everton rarely threatened with occasional cross here and there. Saha came closest again with a header, but his missed the goal. Rest of the game went on like this:
Chelsea attacks, Everton's stubborn defense. Ashley Cole, Malouda and Anelka had close chances but somehow managed not to score.

Thoughts of another draw were flooding my head. After all, we're yet to beat Everton this year. Memories of their shootout victory against Manchester United were not welcome and worrisome.
Then there was Frank Lampard. As per his usual, he was having another fine game. Eventual game winner was a testament to everything that Lampard is to Chelsea. And as Simon Mullock wrote, Franks strike keeps up Lampard family tradition. You see, it was Frank Lampard Sr. who famously danced around the corner flag after scoring his goal, coincidentally against Everton.
Franks effort on goal was brilliant. Not only he regained his footing after stumbling due to Phil Neville's challenge, he was able to strike ball with his left foot. Strike had enough power to get by the keeper Tim Howard. He was able to get his hand on the ball, but that was not enough.
It was game winning goal, Franks 100th in 5 years. No wonder some call Frank a machine!

There was another goal, that didn't count. Malouda's shot. What a wonderful effort, Howard was helpless. Alas ref nor linesman were not in position to make proper call. Once again it was proven to the whole world that video technology is needed.Fortunately in the end it didn't matter. Evertonian hearts were broken once again and Moyes walked away from yet another Cup Final empty handed. Hopefully they will continue to win games and able to crack top four as soon as next year.

Post game celebrations were joy to watch for any Chelsea fan and it is sad to see Guus leave. He shall remain in our hearts forever.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Pressure is on Blues

Everton striker Saha believes that all the pressure is on the Chelsea:

"We will be motivated and concentrated for the final. We will be relaxed and all the pressure will be on Chelsea. We want to frustrate the Blues."

I find it a little amusing that club that haven't lifted any silverware since 1995 will be "relaxed", simply to the fact that so many Everton players have not been it this situation before. Nonetheless, Phil Jagielka had this to say:

"I don't think anyone can compete with us in terms of a work ethic or team spirit.

"We've not been blessed with amazing players over the years but have still managed to finish fifth and sixth.

"We haven't been in this situation for a long time so we're very hungry for the win. We had a ridiculously hard run to get to the final and we don't intend to let it slip at the final hurdle."

Steven Pienaar had this to say:

"We have already beaten two sides from the top four, so we can beat another this time," he said.

"It has been a long time for our fans not to have had a cup final, and we know the city will go crazy if we do win at Wembley.

"Our fans are passionate and they deserve success like this. We aim to give them their reward for all the loyalty they have shown to this club over the years.

"Chelsea are a great side, but nothing is impossible. We will give it our best shot."

I am glad that Everton players stopped short from promising a win, they know that it will not be easy as surely do the Chelsea players who are still angry about Champions League Semi exit.

2 best teams are set to lock horns, I am not expecting anything less than a tight affair, a chess match if you will. Mey the best team win.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Gloomy day

What a gloomy day today, it's quite cloudy and rainy out there. But this is not the only thing that is making it gloomy. You see, it's Champions League Final today... United playing against Barca, team that got "little" help from "Ovrebo aka Inept Norwegian" and got by Chelsea. Call me sour grapes, but I don't think they (Barca) should be there and to show my disgust with UEFA, I am refusing to watch this game today. This means one less person in the TV audience, few less beers drank at my local establishment and less food eaten, everyone loses... even government misses out on few bux in taxes. I know I am not the only one like this, Nicolas Anelka said that he will not be watching either.
Hopefully all this anger will turn into something good. Guus thinks it might prove to be extra motivation during FA Cup final game. Hope so, although beating Everton will not be easy. They are fantastic team with fantastic manager, who has won yet another manager of the year award. Congratulations Mr. Moyes.
It is starting to rain, clouds getting even darker, just like my mood. Must think of something funny to brighten the day. Here is a good one, Jose thinks that Swen might have swine flu.
Life goes on, Chelsea seemed to have first signing of the summer, Austrian starlet who might have not passed medical due to foot injury.
Deco and Riccy seem to be first out of the door, they might be re-united with Jose at Inter. Surely they will not be only ones sold, who will stay and who will go only next manager will decide. Speaking of managers, it is still unclear will Carlo become next Chelsea manager or not. I don't have warm and fuzzy feeling about him, now he is saying that he might stay at Milan. Everything will be clear this Monday when he will find out if he is fired or not. Well thanks pal, I can see you're just dying to be next Chelsea manager... personally I'd prefer Bilic. He is much younger and he speaks English, little bonus if you want to live and work in London, we all know what happened to last gaffer who had issues with the language ;)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Managerial mutterings

After 6:45am phone call from work this morning, where some, not so funny, guy informed me that one of my application servers is down.. (not before he asked me how I was doing?) I could not sleep and I started to ponder, what will happen next with Chelsea, who will replace Guus? He did do an amazing job considering all of the mess our World Cup winning manager has left us in. Is it going to be another Dutchman? Moyes? Jose coming back? Avi?!? :) If we're to believe The Sun, Carlo Ancelotti has said that he will take Chelsea job. Details are yet to be ironed out in regards to backroom staff. It is yet to be determined whom Carlo will be allowed to bring with him. It is not unusual for new manager to bring in his own staff. In any case, Roman has been after Carlo for some time now and if his intuition is as good as with Guss, it might be exciting next couple of seasons for us Chelsea fans. Real indication would be next AC Milan's game, Carlo is planning farewell to AC Milan fans. He is to join Paolo Maldini (who is retiring) on the pitch after the club's next home league match against Roma this Sunday, to say goodbye to the supporters.
On another note, Becks (David Beckham) has warned Chelsea players that Carlo has another side to him. Basically, expect 'hairdryer' type treatment if not performing well. Something tells me that Guus also might be using same type of treatment thus players are already used to it.
Carlo is not the only manager rumored to move to the pastures greener. It seems, Arsenal's Wenger is at least pondering about a move to Spain. You see, now that Perez is back in Madrid's boardroom it makes coaching there much more tempting. If Wenger is serious, this is certainly bad news for us non-Gooners, with new coach, Arsenal might actually start winning some trophies.
It is certain that Juventus will have new coach next season as Claudio Rainieri has been sacked. Whole affair is starting to become quite ugly as reportedly Rainieri is ready to sue Old Lady. Brr.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Ovrebo speaks

Tom Henning Ovrebo, controversial referee finally broke his silence. Naturally he won't comment about the mess he has created during last game and went on about how he is looking to the future, how people "notice him more" and how he is dealing with his stress. Certainly UEFA cannot claim that there is no gag order. In fact, I wish they would come clean or have some sort of guts to do what MLS executive VP Todd Durbin did. In a nutshell, he said that if referee does not perform well, he will be removed from future MLS matches! Now this is something worth cheering about! My hat is off to Mr. Durbin.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Boys will be boys, Ronnie to Real and more.

Funniest story of the day must be the story about 2 Brazilian soccer stars Ronaldinho and Elano being caught on webcam with their pants down... While they are famous enough to have any company they might like this just proves that boys will be boys and wanking off is for everyone ;) If we hear "wanker, wanker" chants during next Man City's game we'll know whom they are addressed to.

Ronnie to Real rumors just won't die. Now there is new speculation that Ronnie will be sold to Real this summer for 80 million euros. Quite a deal if United can pull it off. Personally I will not miss him in EPL, tired seeing his nearly sobbing face when he misses a chance and his whining when he thinks he has been fouled. Please, go save Galacticos, they surely need you as they can't compete with Barcelona.

I bit of positive news from Chelsea standpoint. It appears that John Terry went into Barcelona's dressing roomright after the game, to congratulate them with the win. Class act, especially if you consider all of the fireworks that went on right after the game. Well done John, you've proved once again why you're Chelsea's and England's captain.

There seem to be quite a few polls on the web now asking if Chelsea should be banned from Champions League next year? Glad to see majority of folks would blame Ovrebo instead. You can't hide the truth from the world when it was evident that ref should be blamed for whole mess. In fact, we should be looking at UEFA and asking them questions why Ovrebo has been appointed to ref such an important game in first place. Shouldn't best deserve best?!?

Guus is calling for video technology introduction in Champions League. Well, it's about time! I always wondered why UEFA /FIFA doesn't introduce such technology? If anything, it would make harder to manipulate games... My friend had a great idea. Have challenges as in NFL. 2 per game, 1 each half. If challenge is lost, team loses one of the subs. Surely this would not add too much time to the game and possibility of losing a sub should be a good deterrent from foolish challenges.

Monday, May 11, 2009

On Drogba, Wenger and UEFA

Quite a spanking to Arsenal yesterday, wasn't it? With humor I read that Wenger accused Drogba of diving. Sure, there was very little contact and Drogba went down quite easily. Fabergas received yellow for his suggestion to the ref that Drogba should be carded. In any case, little contact, players going down isn't something new to the game, we see it week in and week out. I do wonder how Wenger missed Adebayour's blatant dive in the second half, there was NO CONTACT whatsoever? It must have been invisible man, surely! Or Wenger didn't miss it, he is just on Drogba bashing bandwagon? Perhaps he should worry more about his own players?
Arsene's player selection, once again, backfired. 5 man midfield did little to stop Chelsea from scoring and inability to finish by Walcott cost Arsenal dearly. Why Bendtner and Adebayour didn't start the game? Arsenal was much more dangerous once those two went on. Fabergas was invisible and Van Persie resembles a shadow of himself. What Arsenal lacks is that big presence in the midfield (Viera) and at least one central defender. Anelkas goal proves my point. So question is, does "Wenger knows" or is he losing the plot?
It was interesting to watch world reaction to the Ovrebo's "performance" and Drogba's outburst after the infamous game vs Barcelona. Surely everyone had a few days to rest and gather their thoughts. There were apologies from Drogba, Ballack and even Bosingwa, none from Overbo nor UEFA. I do wonder why did they ask Ovrebo to re-write his match report and there seem to be quite a "confusion" in regards to the gag order they may or may not has been ordered. I am very interested to see how this will play out, will we see "Fair Play"? Surely "Respect" part seems to be missing here and I am not surprised at all. It is up to UEFA to proved to us all that they are fair and respectful organization, time will show if it is so.