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Chelsea still getting to grip with Sarriball

03 Oct 2018 | Posted by: admin | Categories: news

Chelsea showed with a win and a draw against Liverpool in 3 days that they can still mix it with the so-called “big” boys after finishing fifth in the league last season.

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A win in the Caraboa Cup 2-1 and a 1-1 draw against Liverpool just highlighted how much the players have responded to the new coach. No other player than Hazard, who has scored 7 goals so far this season in all competitions, has been prolific in front of goal. He has been set a target of 40 goals this season, with his current form he might be far off come end of the season.

On Thursday evening we play Videoton in our second group L Europa League match at the Bridge. It is hoped that Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Callum Hudson-Odoi might play and give Hazard a rest.

Sarri celebration

Chelsea lies 2 points off the top of the league with 17 points and in third place. They face former Blues favourite Frank Lampard’s side, Derby in the fourth round of the Caraboa Cup at the end of October. What a homecoming that will be as Lamps’ side beat Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United side on penalties.  Will Chelsea allow loan players Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori to play against them in the Carabao Cup? [EFL regulation does permit this if an agreement in writing is made between the two clubs.]

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Sarriball takes us top of the league

16 Sep 2018 | Posted by: admin | Categories: news

Eden Hazard, the Belgian skipper, continued his hot streak as he struck a fabulous hattrick against Cardiff City on Saturday afternoon. This brings his goal tally in the league to 5 goals, and 2 goals for Belgium so far this season. Saturday’s display was vintage Hazard, he was menacing, clinical and ran the match like a thoroughbred.

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 15: Eden Hazard of Chelsea during the Premier League match between Chelsea FC and Cardiff City at Stamford Bridge on September 15, 2018 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 15: Eden Hazard of Chelsea during the Premier League match between Chelsea FC and Cardiff City at Stamford Bridge on September 15, 2018 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

Chelsea’s other goal came courtesy of a brilliant individual strike by substitute Willian. It was a thunderous strike well worth the admission price. However, Cardiff did not sit back and invite the pressure, they came to play and stunned the Bridge when they scored first against the run of play. Their goal made the Bridge faithful restless and Sarri walk up and down his area. But it was the mercurial Hazard who latched onto a ball from Giroud who started the match to score. And just before halftime Hazard popped again inside Cardiff’s penalty area after again receiving a toe poke from Giroud to put it into the net. Chelsea was rocking, the Bridge held a collective sigh for the score, 2-1 up.

The second half saw Chelsea preserve their lead by keeping the ball and Cardiff trying to nick a goal. Willian came on and ran onto a ball into their penalty area where he was tackled by Cardiff goal score Bamba. Hazard coolly slotted the penalty, 3-1 and his second hattrick for Chelsea. Willian completed the rout a few minutes later when he made it 4-1. With that goal, Chelsea moved to the top of the league on goal difference and with the same points as Liverpool. Hazard has labeled Giroud the world’s best target man to play with at the moment. A glowing endorsement indeed for Giroud from a world class player, who seems to like he can score at any moment in the match.

 

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 15: Olivier Giroud celebrates with Eden Hazard of Chelsea during the Premier League match between Chelsea FC and Cardiff City at Stamford Bridge on September 15, 2018 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 15: Olivier Giroud celebrates with Eden Hazard of Chelsea during the Premier League match between Chelsea FC and Cardiff City at Stamford Bridge on September 15, 2018 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

When Sarri was asked about Hazard’s play he indicated that he always knew he was one of the best but he now has seen him and he will become the best. And he has indicated that Hazard needs to remain within the opposition’s half at all times to receive the ball in order to score 30-40 goals a season. Ominous signs for all opposition teams when Hazard and Chelsea get in their stride.

Chelsea faces POAK in Greece on Thursday in a Europa League Group L match.

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Sarriball needs time but Chelsea still wins

01 Sep 2018 | Posted by: admin | Categories: news

It took Chelsea 72 minutes to score a goal against Bournemouth but it was worth the wait against a stubborn defense. Jorginho passes again made the difference today as he quickly fed Alonso down the left flank who moved inside to pass the ball to Giroud who neatly flicked it to Pedro who dribbled and shifted the ball to his right foot to steer it into the goalpost. Chelsea was deservedly in front, but for all the possession it took 72 minutes to break the Cherries down.

pedro goal celebrationOur football looks exciting but the lessons of last season are perhaps still lingering over us. It seems until we not just dominate possession but score the goals we know we can then the pressure will be released.

Hazard, Willian, Jorginho, Kovacic, and Kante was outstanding again in the middle of the park. David Luiz and Rudiger’s partnership still needs to gel and grow but a clean sheet would do our boys proud. The second goal came once again courtesy of Hazard who received the ball from Alonso in an advanced position inside the penalty area and coolly slotted the ball passed ex-Chelsea keeper Begovic to make it 2-0.

Hazard 111

Four wins out of four matches and joint top with Liverpool who beat Leicester 2-1 earlier today. A welcome return to the first team and a second-half substitute, England international, Rueben Loftus-Cheek who once again showed his silky skills on the ball.

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Chelsea enters Cup competitions with a spring in their step

31 Aug 2018 | Posted by: admin | Categories: news

The big news out of Stamford Bridge today was that Sarri was looking forward to playing against his old pal Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth tomorrow afternoon in the Premier League.

Asked about Loftus-Cheek, he indicated that he was pleased with his training over the last 10 days and that he would feature in the coming weeks when Chelsea has to play two games per week. He was referring to the Europa League matches which means for the foreseeable future Chelsea will be playing games on a Thursday against FC Bate Borisov, Vidi FC, and PAOK FC. Our first match is away to PAOK FC on Sept 20. Chelsea won this competition in 2013.

Europa League trophy

In another cup draw, Chelsea has been drawn against Liverpool in the 3rd round of the Caraboa Cup competition on Tuesday, 25 September. Chelsea last won this competition (old English League Cup) in 2007.

 

 

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Chelsea breaks 7-year hoodoo at Newcastle

27 Aug 2018 | Posted by: admin | Categories: news

For 75 minutes of football, Chelsea was dominating the match against a Newcastle side set to park the bus until thy kingdom come, until Alonso was tripped in their penalty box. It was a decisive decision by the referee which had TV pundits wishing for the VAR system.  Alsonso was scissor-tackled by Shar and Hazard who was hacked down several times throughout the match stepped up and coolly slotted the ball past Martin Dubravka. It was a well-deserved lead for Chelsea after dominating ball possession throughout the match.

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The lead was shortlived as Newcastle benefited from the referee and his assistant not flagging a blatant foul on Giroud when Newcastle’s Yedlin elbowed him in the face. The play was allowed to move on and with his cross into our penalty area, Joselu beat Luiz to the ball as he was ball watching and it beat Kepa at his near post. It was a bullet of a header and it leveled the match. Chelsea players protested but the score remained 1-1.

There was one final twist to this match who came alive in the 76th minute, Chelsea received a free-kick and with his customary precision, Willian knocked the ball across the penalty area where Giroud was lurking. He, in turn, passed the ball to Alonso who was open and he aimed for the far left bottom corner. His shot would have missed if it was not for Yedlin’s foot which diverted the ball into the post.

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Chelsea collected all three points and the march to the title is now finding some root. Three matches on the trot are what Chelsea supporters are used to since the days of Mourinho. Is this the year we dethrone Manchester City? Is this the year that Chelsea and Liverpool will continue their rivalry? Perhaps it is too early to tell at the moment, time will eventually settle these questions. The win at Newcastle banished the 7-year hoodoo at this field. Things are looking up for Chelsea – finally.

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