Monday 1 December
Leeds United U18 0:2 Chelsea U18
Leeds, eh, remember them? Agent Bates did a cracking job of leading them deep into the wilderness and then sold on to a crooked new owner who has now been banned.
On the pitch they played extremely well, regularly creating chances and missing out only to a first-half, Izzy Brown penalty and a late Dominic Solanke finish on the break. In between Bradley Collins was harshly sent off after bringing down a forward just outside the box. It was a foul, but not really a clear goalscoring opportunity.
Joe Edwards didn’t care afterwards after being assistant for the last three campaigns this was his first as coach and he relished it.
Wednesday 3 December
Chelsea 3:0 Tottenham Hotspur
Tottenham, eh, remember them? It is now 24 years since a Gary Lineker goal last gave Spurs a win at Stamford Bridge. We have grown old watching successive Spurs teams lose.
Tonight was supposed to be a real test, Diego Costa suspended, a creaking draw away at the weekend. In the end though we strolled this.
Spurs actually started brightly, their new manager has them closing down and attacking the ball early. Harry Kane is making a name for himself at Spurs and had a couple of early chances, nodding one against the bar and flashing another wide. After that Spurs had to watch as the professionals showed them how to close down, and to finish off teams.
Eden Hazard played a perfect one-two with Didier Drogba and finished inside Lloris’ near post. 1-0.
The Spurs goalkeeper is usually the most composed of a ragged side but his next act was to fluff a clearance to Oscar who looked up fed Drogba and the old man did the rest after sorting out his feet. 2-0.
That was it as a contest, Spurs had a good deal of the ball without penetration and the only black spot was a booking for Matic which keeps him out of Saturday lunchtime’s trip to Tyneside.
Loic Remy is still bursting with energy and the desire to prove he should play more often. His cameo came late but showed his strength and determination in winning the ball and subtly in slotting his finish after giving Lloris the eyes. 3-0.
The only real trouble of the night came when some bugger kept turning the lights on and off – teenagers, eh.
Man City won as well to keep six-points behind but Southampton lost to a late goal at Arsenal.
Saturday 6 December
Newcastle United 2:1 Chelsea
Apparently football matches can be lost as well as won. Newcastlle is a familiar banana skin and so it proved today as they defended brilliantly, took their two chances and rode their luck.
We started as we had against Sunderland trying to better our way down the middle and ignoring the chance to go wide. The results were the same frustration and waste.
The best we could muster in the first-half was an Oscar overhead kick that troubled no man and a Cahill header.
The hosts seemed to realise that we couldn’t hurt them and stepped up their own game.
Papiss Cisse tapped in after Cahill missed a low cross and the Senegalese doubled their tally moments later when Moussa Sissoko set he up again. 2-0.
We went more direct after that and Didier Drogba’s nodded goal from Fabregas’s free-kick wasn’t enough.
Jose congratulated Newcastle afterwards, complained about time wasting and generally had a smirk that suggested he’d know all along that talk of this side being invincible was nonsense.
Chelsea U18 2:1 Leicester City
Isaac Christie-Davies put us in front, Charly Musonda doubled our lead and their goal back almost immediately didn’t upset the rhythm. The U18s march on.