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Chelsea FC

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Chelsea visit the KC Stadium on Saturday with Antonio Conte’s side having also enjoyed a miserable September in the league, failing to win any of their three matches and getting thumped 3-0 by Arsenal last weekend.

“I wouldn’t say it’s a good time to face Chelsea,” Phelan said.

“It’s the time to face them because the calendar says that. We are serious about what we want to do, where we want to go. It’s another game at home and we want to perform and make sure we give them a good game.

“It is important to pick up points in every game. We tried to do that against Arsenal, against Liverpool, but that wasn’t to be. We didn’t come out of it very well as far asconceding goals, but we have an opportunity with 11 men on Saturday. Hopefully we can stay with that and be competitive.”

“I don’t think there’s any such thing as a free hit,” said Phelan, ahead of hosting Chelsea .

“In order to get better and improve, you have to accept the challenges that are there. Nobody wants to lose a football match but we all know somebody has to lose for someone to win. It’s the way you lose that’s important.

“I’ve stressed that to the players. I keep mentioning this word ‘competitive’ and I think we are getting to that point now where the players understand how we want to play and what we’re about. We have to show our own identity in certain situations and gather some momentum.

“We had a good victory in the cup, which is never easy to get a result at Stoke, but then didn’t do so well at Liverpool.

“We were very close against Manchester United, losing with the last kick of the game, and we were extremely good against Leicester and Swansea. We need to regain that little bit of momentum as quickly as we can. Hopefully, that will be this weekend but if not, we’ll prepare for the next one.”

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Three Chelsea youngsters are in the 40 nominees shortlist to win Golden Boy Award 2016:

Attacking midfielder and winger Nathan Allan (on loan to Vitesse Arnhem) defender Andreas Christensen ( on loan to Borussia Monchengladbach) and midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek were considered among the 40 best talents in the world.

The complete nominees list:

Dele Alli (Tottenham), Marco Asensio (Real Madrid), Leon Bailey (Genk), Riechedly Bazoer (Ajax), Gabriel Boschilia (Monaco), Julian Brandt (Leverkusen), Carlos Fernandez (Sevilla), Andreas Christensen (Borussia Monchengladbach), Kingsley Coman (Bayern Munich), Ante Coric (Dinamo Zagreb), Amadou Diawara (Napoli), Mahmoud Dahoud (Borussia Monchengladbach), Danilo Barbosa (Benfica), Moussa Dembele (Celtic), Ousmane Dembele (Dortmund), Gianluigi Donnarumma (AC Milan), Breel Embolo (Schalke), Gabriel Barbosa (Inter),  Aleksandr Golovin (CSKA Moscow), Goncalo Guedes (Benfica),  Demarai Gray (Leicester City), Marko Grujic (Liverpool), Alen Halilovic (Hamburg), Kelechi Iheanacho (Manchester City), Alex Iwobi (Arsenal), Viktor Kovalenko (Shakhtar Donetsk), Ruben Loftus-Cheek (Chelsea), Lucas Hernandez (Atletico Madrid), Emanuel Mammana (Lyon), Nathan (Vitesse), Olivier Ntcham (Genoa), Marcus Rashford (Manchester United), Renato Sanches (Bayern Munich), Jairo Riedewald (Ajax), Ruben Neves (Porto), Tonny Sanabria (Betis), Leroy Sane (Manchester City), Jonathan Tah (Bayer Leverkusen), Youri Tielemans (Anderlecht), Almamy Toure (AS Monaco).

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Chelsea loanee Andreas Christensen had to face the mighty FC Barcelona. Though the Catalans had to play without Leo Messi, it was a tough challenge to face Luis Suarez and Neymar for Gladbach’s defense.
André Schubert side showed a quick movement between several tactical directions during the game, and the Danish defender played either with Nico Elvedi as two-men strong CB-line or as last men at the centre. His job was to close the room to prevent passes into the cut. He did that successfully.
With his deep role, he regular faced Luis Suarez at the centre, who beat him only once when Christensen slipped at the box while the Barcelona star striker overran him – but he missed the target. The Chelsea loanee seemed very concentrated and therefore he managed to get the ball away before one of Barcelona’s strikers even reached it. In addition, he opened the game sometimes with passes to his defense neighbours Elvedi or Korb.
Luis Enrique’s team tried to come behind the defense with crosses, but also there Christensen showed his class. At both goals he was not to blame, Elvedi lost the one-to-one against Arda Turan and then the goalkeeper made a mistake which helped Barcelona to win the game with 2:1. The Chelsea Academy product continues to underline why Chelsea & head coach Conte should be keen to get him back next summer.
Benjamin Neubauer

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Chelsea striker Tammy Abraham is impressing in the beginning of his loan spell at Bristol City, where he scored 10 goals in 13 appearances.

The first-team coach Tom Pemberton praised him and compared him to a legedary English striker:

“Tammy is very much like Ian Wright with regard to being in the right place at the right time,” Pemberton claimed while speaking to the BBC.

“Ian Wright could create something out of nothing and Tammy is the same with regards to goalscoring.

‘He’s frightening and he just has this knack of getting there when you think he can’t do it, and that is something Wrighty had as well.”

 

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Finally a good news for Chelsea, as captain John Terry is set for a return agains Hull City in next weekend clash.

The Blues skipper recovered from the ankle injury he got a couple of weeks ago in the game against Swansea.

Terry trained with the squad yesterday, after undergoing a scan that gave positive response, so now Antonio Conte will have more options to solve the team’s defensive problems that were evident in the last games, where the team conceded five goals.

The Italian manager is also thinking about trying to set a three-man defense, that was really successful in his spells at Juventus and as an Italy’s coach.

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After back to back premier League defeats to Liverpool and Arsenal respectively, Chelsea boss Antonio Conte has come under pressure for his side poor form.

The Chelsea defense can be faulted the most for the recent poor form, with schoolboy errors from experienced midfielder Gary Cahill twice costing Chelsea points.

Speculations are making the rounds and according to The Mail,  Antonio Conte is planning a defensive clear out by selling off both Cahill and Ivanovic in the coming months with the imminent returns of Kurt Zouma and captain John Terry from their respective injuries.

The blues have conceded nine goals in their last four games in all competitions.

Speaking on ​Sky Sports after the weekend’s defeat to the Gunners left Chelsea sitting down in eighth place in the league, the Times’ Matt Dickinson claimed that the Blues were in crisis – saying:

“A defensive crisis, that’s for sure,” the weird thing yesterday is to see the same mistakes. When you realise you’re doing something wrong in the first five minutes – playing from the back – and you think: ‘Okay, this isn’t working,’ but it was like the highlights were on a constant loop.”

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Ex Liverpool defender and now Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher had his say on Chelsea’s defeat against Arsenal.

The former England international admitted it was Gary Cahill’s fault, and not David Luiz, for the defensive mistakes that allow Gunners to find the net in last Saturday’s derby at the Emirates:

“No it’s Cahill today! Luiz not great for the two Leicester goals midweek though!!”

This is what Carragher tweeted about the game.

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According to rumours coming from Spain Chelsea targeted Barcelona full back Sergi Roberto to replace Branislav Ivanovic.

The Spanish player, that grew up in Barça’s famous academy, has been a regular started in the right full-back for a year, where he impressed with his performances.

Sergi Roberto was also targeted by ex Blaugrana manager Pep Guardiola, that would like to bring him to Manchester City.

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