The week before Chelsea knocked Arsenal out of the League Cup
Monday 21 October
The FA berks, rather than the Berkshire FA, have decided to charge Jose Mourinho over his rant at Anthony Taylor on Saturday. We were under the impression that because the referee had seen the incident and dealt with it at the time that no retrospective action could be taken. It seems there is one rule for the FA and another for the poor managers. The FA have long been witless morons – witness Greg Dyke’s commission to sort out the England team which co-opted a token black man on Sunday but is largely made up of the usual suspects Howard Wilkinson and Roy Hodgson. Putting aside the absurdity of asking the current England manager what is wrong with the England team, Hodgson and Wilkinson are both the problem not part of the solution. Their blood was coloured by Wing-Commander Reep and Charles Hughes, they have no conception of football beyond how to play it long early.
What really seems to have stung the FA disciplinary panel is not Jose’s infringement of the rule but the publicity he garnered by sitting with the fans. Spineless.
In the real world the team flew out to Gelsenkirchen without Ashley Cole, who is not being risked despite training this morning.
We have been drawn away against either Brighton or Cardiff in the new U21 cup. The match will take place third week of November.
Tuesday 22 September
Shalke 04 0:3 Chelsea
The garbage has been taken out. This was closer than the final score might suggest as Shalke hogged plenty of the possession but found Chelsea in obdurate mood.
It helped out cause that Shalke conceded an early corner and left Fernando Torres unmarked at the far stick. The ball was brilliantly flicked on by Ivanovic was nodded in by the Spaniard on his 100th appearance. 0-1.
Shalke got a toe-hold and started to look threatening when Julian Draxler slid a bal through for Denis Aogo but an offside flag made Cech’s black irrelevant.
Petr Cech needed to be at his best with only two saves before the interval as he first tipped over a strong Boateng shot and hen from the corner Roman Neustädter thumped a header goalward but Cech tipped that over too.
At the start of the second Frank Lampard dinked a training ground ball on Torres; head and the Spaniard head hit the bar with the home ’keeper watching from his line.
The longer the second-half wore the further forward Shalke crept until Hazard broke, fed Oscar who was chased and harried by the only defender, Jermaine Jones, who found Torres to tap in his 39th goal for Chelsea. 0-2.
The break against a depleted defence trick worked again right at the death as Hazard ran forward and use Torres’ run as a decoy before finishing in the far corner. 0-3.
There was still time for a couple of scuffed efforts but we were home and dry.
Mourinho managed not to get sent to the stands on the day he accepted the FA’s petty little charge and pronounced himself happy that we can win the group.
Elsewhere, Basel slipped to a last minute equaliser in Bucharest and to make a good night even better Borussia Dortmund scored a late winner at the Emirates.
Shalke 04 U19 0:2 Chelsea U19
A game of two halves as Shalke dominated the first and we sneaked the second with a late Lewis Baker penalty and a bundle from Nathan Ake gave us the points and maintains the 100% group record.
Saturday 26 October
Stoke City U18 0:2 Chelsea U18
George Cole opened the scoring, curling in a free-kick before Jeremie Boga beat half the Stoke side and lashed the ball in off the post from 20-yards. This boy is destined for great things. That though was the scoring done and Adi Viveash’s eased off in the second-half to bounce back from defeat last week.
Sunday 27 October
Chelsea 2:1 Manchester City
The last match of the weekend came down to the last kick. That it fell to Fernando Torres to add the coup de theatre was fitting as the Spaniard dominated the game and rightly won man of the match.
He started with his head bowed after Ramires picked him out with a perfect cross. Onside and with time Fernando thought he was neither and shinned his effort over. He walked back with his head low. Earlier he dived to meet a cross with his chest instead of boot or head and seemed to complain about a push from behind.
These incidents were a catalyst for a different reaction. Moments later he skinned Gaël Clichy and put the ball on a plate for Andre Schürrle to score his first for Chelsea. 1-0.
Manchester City were playing too but with plenty of bodies in midfield seemed to lack to nous to break down Chelsea’s defence.
Torres’ next intervention was to blast the ball against the crossbar as he turned a defnder. Schürrle couldn’t do anything with the rebound.
We looked comfortable and in control but that didn’t last into the second period. Samir Nasri’s simple through ball and Aguero ’s run left Terry and Cahill floundering. The Argentine’s finish seemed to stun Petr Cech who flapped at the ball as it whistled in at his near post. 1-1.
That looked to be that. City had their tails up for a short while but we re-established control without threatening until Willian bunted a ball into the growing storm and it hung long enough for the defender and goalkeeper to collide leaving Torres to scamper after the loose ball and finish with a simple tap. 2-1.
The place erupted as the prospect of falling behind Arsenal turned to right in the thick of the race. Jose celebrated in with the fans behind the City bench. A decision, with hindsight, he might regret. He is making a habit of finishing the match in with the fans.
We move into winter in a strong position and with several major hurdles crossed. What is perhaps more important is that we are unlikely to have any self-inflicted wounds this autumn, this is a happy ship and not even the first sight of the yellow ball could frighten the horses.
Talking of self-inflicted wounds Andre Villas-Boas had a go at Spurs fans for being negative as his team needed a late and absurd penalty to beat Hull. Gus Poyet enjoyed a better day as his Sunderland side won north east derby 2-1.