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chelsea

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CAHILL

Chelsea defender Gary Cahill claims the players were left distraught after the 2-1 defeat to West Ham United yesterday.

Cahill, 29, scored the equaliser but was part of a back-line that failed abjectly as the Blues suffered another defeat in what has been their worst start to a season in a generation.

Speaking to the press afterwards, the England international said this:

“The mood in the dressing room is not great – like you’d imagine when you lose games. 

“Last season we weren’t used to it. The lads are devastated.

“You’re left scratching your head sometimes. In the first half a Cesc Fabregas goal could have been given and we had a goal that was nearly over the line. That sums up the way we’re going.

“And then we’ve got the sending-off. Originally we played on – we thought the referee had played on. Maybe the assistant called it back, I’m not sure sure what’s happened there. 

“We’ve not had the rub of the green, but we’re not feeling sorry for ourselves. We have to work hard to turn this round.

“Not many words are being said at the moment. I’m sure we’ll reflect in next day or so. We worked really hard with 10 men and had the majority of the play in the second half. It’s a summary of our season at the minute.”

 

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It is perhaps unsurprising that Chelsea’s latest defeat sparked a series of social media posts that at least questioned Jose Mourinho’s position as manager and directly called for it to end. 

The culture of modern football, which can often see managers under pressure very early regardless of past success, Chelsea’s own recent tradition of making dismissals midway through the season as well as Mourinho’s own extremely high standards have meant this season’s travails have created the scenario that many thought impossible in August- the job of Chelsea’s most successful being put in doubt.

The 2-1 loss to West Ham yesterday afternoon was a microcosm of Chelsea’s season thus far. The sloppy  lack of concentration that led the opening goal, the brief resurgence in the second half following equally poor defending from the home side and then the killer mistake that was eminently avoidable. That the officials made two decisions to Chelsea’s detriment- one right and one wrong- and Chelsea’s lack of discipline thereafter only sought to make the game even more representative of the Premiership champions’ poor season so far.

Mourinho did not speak to the press following the game and it was later revealed that he was dismissed from the sidelines at half-time by the referee. Given his fine and suspended touchline after the home defeat to Southampton three weeks it was probably a good thing, one can only be grateful it is not the custom for Premiership managers to vent their anger on social media.

The ire of many fans on Facebook and Twitter was aimed at a combination of the referee- primarily for disallowing Fabregas’ goal when he was onside- the poor performances of many of last season’s star players and Mourinho himself. The Portuguese’s continued trust in the below par performers such as Fabregas, Matic and Hazard- though the Belgian was dropped last week- is often cited along with his insistence on blaming officials himself and his supposed arrogance.

Nobody can hold the opinion that Mourinho is blameless, or in fact that all those charges hold a degree of truth, but nor can anyone deny his past achievements- the cliche of him being only able to win with money being almost completely baseless. Those directly calling for him to leave appear to have no pertinent alternative, leaving the more level headed of us to think their opinion is largely punitive. Diego Simeone has been linked but chances of him leaving fourth placed in La Liga Atletico Madrid for a Chelsea in apparent free fall in October are fanciful, as are ideas that Chelsea could pry back one of their less successful but more mellow managers- namely Carlo Ancelotti- having already sacked him are equally stupid.

During his recent seven minute speech after the loss to Southampton Mourinho struck a certain point, that being this one a moment of acute crisis for Chelsea. The decision the club makes on its manager could define it for the next few years, just as the Portuguese’s original departure in 2007 did as the club looked all over the continent for someone to sufficiently replace him.

The troubles with Chelsea are deeper than the manager and cannot, and will not should club decide to replace him, be fixed. There are traces of 2007 at this certain time, the biggest being the clear and obvious lack of able recruitment in the summer. Rather than looking for a quick fix in the shape of a new manager, the club should examine why it has not given the squad the refreshment it desperately needs and what Mourinho requested the moment last season was over.

This is not a time for Chelsea to make such a drastic change in the manager’s seat. It was only a few years ago that the club were mocked throughout Europe for sacking managers too early, a policy that prevented the team from challenging for the biggest honours on a yearly basis. Those in disagreement are themselves guilty of having very short memories.

This season has gone from being one where Chelsea could push on from winning back the Premiership title to winning in Europe to a campaign where the very involvement in the Champions League beyond this season is under threat. The club need to look beyond the fact they have almost certainly relinquished their domestic title and hold fast so that can start again next season by backing their manager both by keeping in his job and giving him the funds to improve the squad in January and the summer.

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Begovic 4- Should not conceded either goal.

Zouma 5- Not suited at right back, got exposed a few times.

Cahill 5- Scored a good goal but was part of a collective dreadful defensive display.

Terry 5- Not good, two very avoidable goals.

Azpilicueta 4- Was at direct fault for the second goal.

Ramires 5- Worked hard but inconsistent.

Matic 3- Got sent off and that was probably a relief.

Willian 6- Team’s best player again but he can’t do it alone.

Fabregas 4- Passed well to begin with but taken off at half time. A shadow of what he was.

Hazard 5- Set up a good chance for Ramires but not good enough.

Costa 5- Worked hard but not a great deal to say aside from that.

Substitutes:

Baba N/A- Brought on with two minutes to go, ineffective.

Falcao N/A- Barely touched the ball.

Mikel 5- Provided some stability to begin with but was overwhelmed by the change of momentum.

 

Manager:

Jose Mourinho 5- The team started well but there are still things profoundly wrong. He couldn’t change the momentum of the game once it went against Chelsea.

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WEST HAM v CHELSEA Diego Costa Obi Mikel disappointed defeat

Chelsea have lost 2-1 to West Ham United as they resume their woes after a promising week at home and in Europe.

West Ham , in keeping with Slaven Bilic’s words prior to kick-off, started the game with belief and were not afraid to get forward early with Chelsea being forced, for the most part, to venture ahead on the counter attack.

Chelsea’s first sight came from the boot of Costa as his international teammate Fabregas chipped the ball through and the forward volleyed high and over. The home side’s early initiative was met attack for attack as Chelsea looked bright going forward but lacked the final pass or finish. Costa won a corner which he then failed to connect with properly and soon after the defending champions were paid to pay as West Ham took the lead.

A free-kick, given away by Fabregas, was tipped over the bar by Begovic. The resulting corner was not cleared and the ball fell to Zarate on the right side who was inexplicably allowed to shoot through the crowded area and in at Begovic’s near post.

Chelsea’s response was timid at first but as the first half continued were able to get forward- resuming their early incisiveness with the ball at feet. They were inches from equalising with ten minutes to go of the first half when a corner was headed by Zouma and almost turned over the line by West Ham forward Lanzini on the line. The same player almost, and should have doubled West Ham’s lead minutes later when put through on goal by Payet but put the ball over Begovic and bar; the Bosnia and Herzogovina international doing well to put off the forward enough to force the miss.

Chelsea’s half did not improve as it neared its end with two defining events. Chelsea were denied an equaliser, this time incorrectly, when Fabregas finished past the West Ham ‘keeper having received the ball from Willian with replays showing him to be level with the last defender.  The next was rather less contentious but potentially a great more damaging when Matic pulled back Sakho on the right wing as the West Ham man turned past him and ran towards the area and was given a second yellow card- he was cautioned for something similar seconds after Lanzini cleared the ball off the line as the home side broke forward.

The second half began rather tentatively for the home side, as if having an advantage in men and score disconcerted them. As a result it was Chelsea that took the initiative and found the leveler they were denied in the first half. A corner was drifted in and West Ham’s defending proved to be as sloppy as Chelsea’s earlier on as Cahill was given leave to fire in the loose ball from close range.

The equaliser gave new life to both sides- West Ham’s Mark Noble had a half volley caught by Begovic, and Costa almost caught out West Ham’s defence when a back pass was short but Adrian was first to the ball. Being a player down curtailed Chelsea’s ability to counter attack although Ramires should have done better with a cut back from Hazard when Begovic cleared away.

Chelsea’s troubles seemed for a time in this past week to be at least almost behind them but they were more acute than ever before as West Ham retook the lead through a header from Andy Carroll. Azpilicueta was isolated and Begovic off his line as Chelsea fell behind again with 12 minutes left. The goal was coming after a period of pressure from the home side and proved once and for all Chelsea’s brittle defence.

The game drew to a close with few chances for Chelsea to regain parity. A stoppage time free-kick from Willian came to nothing and Chelsea once again look like the same empty shell that they have done for much of this season. It is another defeat and one where Chelsea could and should have got at least one point from. It is true to say the referee disallowed a legitimate goal in the first half, but the Premiership champions, now surely destined to relinquish their title in May, must fix the defensive and fitness problems that continue to pervade their football if they are to reach their minimal target of finishing in the Champions League places.

 

 

 

WEST HAM: Adrian, Jenkinson, Tomkins, Collins, Cresswell, Noble (c), Kouyate, Zarate, Payet, Lanzini, Sakho.

Subs: Randolph, Carroll, Valencia, Obiang, Ogbonna, Jelavic, Antonio.

Manager: Slaven Bilic

Scorers: Zarate (17) Carroll (78)

 

CHELSEA: Begovic; Zouma, Cahill, Terry (c), Azpilicueta; Ramires, Matic; Willian, Fabregas (Mikel 45), Hazard; Diego Costa.

Subs: Amelia, Baba Rahman, Mikel, Loftus-Cheek, Oscar, Traore, Falcao.

Manager: José Mourinho

Scorers: Cahill (55)

 

Referee: Jonathan Moss

Venue: Upton Park, London, UK

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Chelsea are 1-0  down to West Ham United in what has been a controversial but highly eventful first half at Upton Park.

West Ham , in keeping with Slaven Bilic’s words prior to kick-off, started the game with belief and were not afraid to get forward early with Chelsea being forced, for the most part, to venture ahead on the counter attack.

Chelsea’s first sight came from the boot of Costa as his international teammate Fabregas chipped the ball through and the forward volleyed high and over. The home side’s early initiative was met attack for attack as Chelsea looked bright going forward but lacked the final pass or finish. Costa won a corner which he then failed to connect with properly and soon after the defending champions were paid to pay as West Ham took the lead.

A free-kick, given away by Fabregas, was tipped over the bar by Begovic. The resulting corner was not cleared and the ball fell to Zarate on the right side who was inexplicably allowed to shoot through the crowded area and in at Begovic’s near post.

Chelsea’s response was timid at first but as the first half continued were able to get forward- resuming their early incisiveness with the ball at feet. They were inches from equalising with ten minutes to go of the first half when a corner was headed by Zouma and almost turned over the line by West Ham forward Lanzini on the line. The same player almost, and should have doubled West Ham’s lead minutes later when put through on goal by Payet but put the ball over Begovic and bar; the Bosnia and Herzogovina international doing well to put off the forward enough to force the miss.

Chelsea’s half did not improve as it neared its end with two events that are sure to be talking points at the end of the game. Chelsea were denied an equaliser, this time incorrectly, when Fabregas finished past the West Ham ‘keeper having received the ball from Willian with replays showing him to be level with the last defender.  The next was rather less contentious but potentially a great more damaging when Matic pulled back Sakho on the right wing as the West Ham man turned past him and ran towards the area and was given a second yellow card- he was cautioned for something similar seconds after Lanzini cleared the ball off the line as the home side broke forward.

With a goal and man down it is going to be a very difficult road back for Jose Mourinho’s side. There have been moments of promise and they should have a goal to their name, but the depressingly familiar traits of poor defending and ill discipline have been more corrosive than referring mistakes.

 

 

 

 

WEST HAM: Adrian, Jenkinson, Tomkins, Collins, Cresswell, Noble (c), Kouyate, Zarate, Payet, Lanzini, Sakho.

Subs: Randolph, Carroll, Valencia, Obiang, Ogbonna, Jelavic, Antonio.

Manager: Slaven Bilic

Scorers: Zarate (17)

 

CHELSEA: Begovic; Zouma, Cahill, Terry (c), Azpilicueta; Ramires, Matic; Willian, Fabregas, Hazard; Diego Costa.

Subs: Amelia, Baba Rahman, Mikel, Loftus-Cheek, Oscar, Traore, Falcao.

Manager: José Mourinho

 

Referee: Jonathan Moss

Venue: Upton Park, London, UK

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Ahead of Chelsea’s clash with West Ham (15:00 GMT KO), the official lineups have been announced.

The Blues are looking to keep their winning form against their London neighbours, having won just three of their opening nine games.

 

Lineups:

WEST HAM: Adrian, Jenkinson, Tomkins, Collins, Cresswell, Noble (c), Kouyate, Zarate, Payet, Lanzini, Sakho.

Subs: Randolph, Carroll, Valencia, Obiang, Ogbonna, Jelavic, Antonio.

Manager: Slaven Bilic

 

CHELSEA: Begovic; Zouma, Cahill, Terry (c), Azpilicueta; Ramires, Matic; Willian, Fabregas, Hazard; Diego Costa.

Subs: Amelia, Baba Rahman, Mikel, Loftus-Cheek, Oscar, Traore, Falcao.

Manager: José Mourinho

 

Referee: Jonathan Moss

Venue: Upton Park, London, UK

Kick Off: 3 pm GMT

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mourinho

José Mourinho explained in his Friday’s press conference that the injury situation hasn’t changed: Thibaut Courtois, Branislav Ivanovic, Loic Remy and Pedro will stay out again for West Ham clash due to their physical problems.

The Blues manager also explained that he is very satisfied about the clean sheets the team obtained in the last two games:

“It is important. Not just the clean sheets but the way the team played to keep them. It was not a super goalkeeping performance. They were both based on good teamwork.

“I try the best decisions for the team and analyse opponents and what the team can be and try to reduce that unpredictability of every match but you are right that this is not about defenders.

“It is about the team as a team and they defended well in both matches.

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Ahead of Chelsea’s game against West Ham at Upton Park tomorrow (15:00 GMT KO), we take a look at the odds on offer.

All odds provided by SkyBET (SB), Ladbrokes (L) and Coral (C), correct as of 23rd October.

 

Full-time score:

West Ham win: SB – 13/5, L – 11/4,  C – 27/10

Draw: SB – 14/5, L –13/5, C – 27/10

Chelsea win: SB – 10/11, L – 10/11, C – 1/1

 

First goalscorer:

Dimitri Payet: SB  9/1, L – 9/1, C – 8/1

Diafra Sakho: SB – 7/1, L – 7/1, C – 7/1

Mauro Zarate: SB – 9/1, L – 10/1, C – 8/1

Manuel Lanzini: SB – 10/1, L – 12/1, C – 12/1

Mark Noble: SB – 22/1, L – 20/1, C – 16/1

No goalscorer: SB – 14/1, L – 11/1, C – 11/1

Eden Hazard: SB – 6/1, L – 6/1, C – 6/1

Oscar: SB – 7/1, L – 7/1, C – 7/1

Radamel Falcao: SB – 5/1, L – 5/1, C – 5/1

Diego Costa: SB – 4/1, L – 4/1, C – 4/1

Willian: SB – 8/1, L – 8/1, C – 8/1

 

Final Score:

West Ham win:

1-0: SB – 11/1, L – 11/1,  C – 12/1

2-0: SB – 18/1, L – 18/1, C – 20/1

2-1: SB – 11/1, L – 10/1, C – 11/1

3-0: SB – 40/1, L – 40/1, C – 45/1

3-1: SB – 28/1, L – 25/1, – 28/1

 

Draw:

0-0: SB – 14/1, L – 12/1, C – 12/1

1-1: SB – 6/1, L – 11/2, C – 11/2

2-2: SB – 12/1, L – 11/1, C – 11/1

3-3: SB – 50/1, L – 40/1, C – 40/1

4-4: SB – 200/1, L – 150/1, C – 125/1

Chelsea win:

1-0: SB – 15/2, L – 8/1, C – 8/1

2-0: SB – 9/1, L – 9/1, C – 10/1

2-1: SB – 7/1, L – 7/1, C – 15/2

3-0: SB – 16/1, L – 16/1, C – 18/1

3-1: SB – 12/1, L – 12/1, – 14/1

 

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KEVIN DE BRUYNE
De Bruyne was unable to break into Chelsea's first team.

A respected Belgian journalist has said that Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho “begged” the club’s directors to keep former midfielder Kevin de Bruyne. 

The Belgian moved to Chelsea’s title rivals Manchester City from Wolfsburg for £55 million in the summer, making him the second-most expensive player in Premier League history.

De Bruyne excelled in the Bundesliga, having left Stamford Bridge in unsavoury circumstances, but Belgian football writer Kristof Terreur, has said that Mourinho was against selling the 24-year old and told the board “Do not sell this guy.”

Terreur, Premier League correspondent for Belgian newspaper Het Laatste Nieuws, made the claim in response to an article by Paul Hayward describing the loss of De Bruyne, who moved to Chelsea for £7 million from Belgian side Genk, as Mourinho’s biggest-ever mistake.

The allegation contradicts the words of Mourinho when De Bruyne was originally sold, with the 52-year old stating, “He was not training very well and he was saying, ‘I can’t give you more – this is just my way’. So yes, I accept that if this is his mentality and it’s his choice to go, it is better for Chelsea to make a good deal.”

 

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Chelsea will look to continue their winning form as they face West Ham at Upton Park (15:00 GMT KO).

The Blues, who won only their third game of the season with a 2-0 win over Aston Villa last week, are still only in 12th – their second-ever worst start to a season.

Slaven Bilic’s side however have made their best start to a Premier League campaign in 17 years – they sit fourth and have been in impressive form this year, having beaten Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool thus far.

Jose Mourinho’s side took four points off the Hammers last season, who were then managed by Sam Allardyce. Chelsea drew 0-0 at home, before winning the away fixture 0-1 last March.

 

Last six games:

West Ham: WWLDDW (includes one League Cup game). 

Chelsea: WDLLWD (includes two Champions League games and one League Cup game).

 

Team News:

– Chelsea continue to be without injured trio Loic Remy, Pedro and Branislav Ivanovic.

– Mourinho wouldn’t comment as to whether Eden Hazard would be recalled, despite hitting the post in midweek.

– Victor Moses is ineligible for West Ham against his parent club.

– Winston Reid is also out for the Hammers with a minor back injury.

– Emner Valencia could make his first start of the season having returned from injury.

 

Statistics:

– West Ham have won just one of their last 18 Premier League meetings with Chelsea (D3, L14).

– Chelsea haven’t conceded a goal in the last five of those meetings.

– The Blues are the only team that have stopped West Ham scoring at home in their last 21 games.

– However, the home side have made their best start to a Premier League season, with 17 points after nine games.

– They are unbeaten in their last six games (W4, D2).

– Chelsea have lost three of their last five away games, winning only one.

– However, Mourinho has lost just five of his 52 London derbies in the Premier League (W36, D11).

 

Starting XI last time out in the Premier League:

West Ham (away vs. Crystal Palace, won 1-3): Adrián, Jenkinson, Tomkins, Collins, Cresswell, Kouyaté, Noble, Moses, Lanzini, Payet, Sakho.

Chelsea (home vs. Aston Villa, won 2-0): Begovic, Ivanovic, Cahill, Zouma, Azpilicueta, Ramires, Mikel, Willian, Pedro, Fabregas, Costa.

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