Monday 28 March
Lovely weather means the women’s game against Liverpool had to be postponed. Normally that wouldn’t be too much of a drag but the girls don’t have a league fixture because of the FA Cup and internationals for about three weeks.
Charly Musonda played for Belgium’s U21 as they were beaten by Montenegro. Stipe Perica scored for Croatia U21 in their 2-1 win over Estonia.
Tuesday 29 March
England 1:2 the Netherlands
Blast, just as Hodgson stumbles on a coherent and exciting mix for England he unpicks it and plays a different team. Jamie Vardy scored for us but this was another insipid, dreary international. It seems we have not reached the promised land just yet.
Marco Van Ginkel came on for the Dutch for the last ten-minutes.
Andreas Christensen won a second start for Demark as they were beaten at Hampden Park by the only goal in a scrappy match with Scotland.
Thibaut Courtois played the whole of Belgium’s match in Portugal but they’ve had other things on their minds this week and it was a flat occasion.
In African Cup of Nations action Nigeria will miss the finals after losing 1-0 to Egypt. Obi John and Victor Moses both played.
Bertrand Traore faired better as Burkina Faso drew 0-0 away to closest group rivals Uganda.
Wednesday 30 March
Brazil, with Willian a starter, drew with Paraguay in a World Cup qualifier. They are lagging in the competition, only sixth in the group where the top four qualify. If you fancy an early bet on the next World Cup, why not get your free bet promotional code with Sporting Bet now?
Matt Miazga had a more eventful evening being red carded as the USA U23s lost to Colombia, Matt was the second red of the evening for the US. The defeat means they will not be at the Olympic games in Rio.
Thursday 31 March
U21 friendly action and Islam Feruz and Kasey Palmer bashed goals past Queens Park Rangers.
Friday 1 April
Ian Britton died today, he had prostate cancer and leaves us at the age of only 61. Ian was a bright spark in our midfield back when we were crap. His play and goals lit up the otherwise bleak late 70s and he will be missed.
The FA extended Diego Costa’s ban because they don’t like him and haven’t got anything better to do. The Spain international will miss the Swansea game as well.
Saturday 2 April
Aston Villa 0:4 Chelsea
A bit like being in the room when your in-laws kick off an argument that has been brewing for a few years about who got drunk last Christmas and who kissed the postman – Villa Park was awash with hatred, betrayal and the stench of relegation.
Chelsea’s young side went about their job commendably well. Ruben Loftus-Cheek looks a full part of the first-team now, he hustled and harried and took his goal well.
Pato made his debut and scored his penalty well before linking an thrilling move at the start of the second-half that Pedro finished for 0-3.
Pedro added our fourth but we didn’t rub any more salt into Villa wounds as they tore themselves apart in the stands and on the pitch – Alan Hutton walking for two yellow cards. He trooped off to a standing ovation.
Jake Clarke-Salter made his debut amid the hubbub and looked OK. With Matt Miazga also making his bow – competent at the heart of a largely untroubled defence – we had three new boys in one match.
Chelsea U18 6:2 Reading U18
We gave them a head start at the break but thumped them in the end. Miro Muheim, Jacob Maddox and Ike Ugbo with two each and a penalty from Luke McCormick sank the Royals.
Sunday 3 April
Chelsea 6:0 Aston Villa
Not a happy weekend for Villa sides as their women came unstuck in the FA Cup.
Drew Spence put us ahead just before the break and Ji So-Yun hit a hat-trick to add to goals from Fran Kirby and Eni Aluko – semi-finals up next with the draw on Tuesday.