Howe told Sky Sports News:
Howe told Sky Sports News:
Chelsea have lost 1-0 at home to Bournemouth in an appalling Premiership game at Stamford Bridge.
The defeat will once again call into question of Jose Mourinho as it sees Chelsea’s mini revival of late come crashing to an embarrassing end as Glenn Murray headed in a late goal from close range after yet more indecisive defending.
The game started well for the Blues with attempts from Hazard, which was saved, and Oscar. Bournemouth, making their first Premiership visit to Stamford Bridge, did not approach the game with any trepidation and tried to create chances of their own after the first few minutes- Junior Stanislas having a number of shots blocked from outside the box, and then one saved by returning Chelsea ‘keeper Thibaus Courtois.
There was good link up play from the attacking front men but Chelsea struggled to create chances on a regular basis. Starting with the same logic as they did last Sunday against Spurs, with Pedro and Hazard swapping in the up front position,
Cahill should have done better with a header from Willian’s corner and Pedro should have least tested the Bournemouth ‘keeper from inside the box as Chelsea were largely limited to set pieces and attempts from outside the area. Matic tried his luck from distance but his shot went over the bar, and Hazard’s just moments later was saved.
Joshua King had a similar effort as the game drew closer to its break but he could only put the ball over the bar, and Pedro had a shot well saved seconds later at the other end.
The second half began with the substitution of Oscar for Diego Costa as Mourinho sought to find a breakthrough. Both sides had attempts on goal early on through Pedro and Ritche respectively before Willian and Matic missed the target for Chelsea.
After a strong start the game became stuck in a quagmire of narrow channels in the Bournemouth half as the Blues demonstrated their limited ideas up front as they were once again forced to resort to shooting from distance for the want of clear chances. Both Pedro and Costa tested the ‘keeper from outside or near the edge of the box before Kurt Zouma missed from six yards out when he should have done better.
Chelsea were made to pay for their fecklessness in front of goal with 8 minutes left as Glenn Murray, who had only just come on as a substitute, finished a goal mouth scramble in the most simple of manners when neither Courtois, Cahill or Zouma were able to clear a corner. Mourinho brought on Remy and Traore but it was to no avail as Chelsea’s attempts to get back into the game this late on were futile.
In truth, it was a sham of a performance from a team with a great deal wrong with it. While there is no suggestion Mourinho will lose his job, the situation is becoming more precarious with every dropped point and defeat.It appears they now need a miracle to even qualify for European competition next season.
CHELSEA: Courtois; Ivanovic (c), Zouma, Cahill, Baba (Traore); Fabregas (Remy), Matic ; Willian, Oscar (Costa), Pedro; Hazard.
Unused subs: Begovic, Azpilicueta, Mikel, Loftus-Cheek
Manager: José Mourinho
AFC BOURNEMOUTH: Boruc: Francis, Cook, Daniels, Smith: Ritchie, Gosling, Surman, Gosling: Arter, King (Murray).
Unused subs: Allsop, Butcher, Rantie, Kermogant, O’Kane, Cargill.
Manager: Eddie Howe
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has claimed that the Blues didn’t deserve to lose Bournemouth at Stamford Bridge tonight.
Mourinho told Sky Sport:
“We didn’t deserve to lose. Our opponent – in the period that they thought only of defence – managed to get a goal and there was a clear mistake from the referee.”
“I think it is a clear handball and penalty with the score at 0-0. In the first half we were not aggressive enough, in the second half we arrived in dangerous positions a lot of time with a lot of crosses from the right hand side from Ivanovic.”
“They played in a way that some call intelligent, some say is not fair play. They were taking time, calling for the medical department and drinking water like it is basketball time out.”
“I am concerned of course. There is no chance that Chelsea will be fighting relegation. That is not the problem. It is that our objective is to finish top four. Before this game it was realistic to think that our quality would take us out of this position, but maybe now we have to think about top six.”
“If our players are not able to give the maximum every day that is a problem. If you analysis match after match there are a few layers where it is difficult to be consistent. You think there is evolution, but maybe it is just one moment in which they are good.”
Ahead of Chelsea’s Premier League clash with Bournemouth at Stamford Bridge (17:30 GMT KO), the official lineups have been announced.
The Blues are looking to keep up their three-match unbeaten streak, having not conceded a goal in that time.
They come up against a Bournemouth side who have lost five of their last six, the last of which being a 3-3 draw with Everton.
CHELSEA: Courtois; Ivanovic (c), Zouma, Cahill, Baba; Fabregas, Matic; Willian, Oscar, Pedro; Hazard.
Subs: Begovic, Azpilicueta, Mikel, Loftus-Cheek, Traore, Remy, Diego Costa.
Manager: José Mourinho
AFC BOURNEMOUTH: Boruc: Francis, Cook, Daniels, Smith: Ritchie, Gosling, Surman, Gosling: Arter, King.
Subs: Allsop, Butcher, Rantie, Kermogant, Murray, O’Kane, Cargill.
Manager: Eddie Howe
Referee: Mike Jones
Venue: Stamford Bridge, London, UK.
Kick Off: 17:30pm GMT
Chelsea captain John Terry has revealed all after he was interviewed by former Liverpool and England defender Jamie Carragher for the Daily Mail.
The Blues skipper, who has lifted all four of Chelsea Premier League trophies, played alongside Carragher 23 times in an England shirt, having both played at Euro 2004 and the 2006 and 2010 World Cups.
Firstly, the former Reds full-back spoke to Terry about the battles between the two, having clashed almost 50 times during their playing careers, both of which started in 1997.
Carragher: ‘John Terry is the best Premier League centre back of all time.’ Who said that?
Terry: (long pause) My mum, probably.
Carragher: It was me! You weren’t saying anything about pundits then, were you?! But let’s go back to 2005. You are named the PFA Player of the Year. Do you remember when you found out that Stevie (Gerrard) and I had voted for you? We saw each other at England and you seemed surprised. Was that genuine?
Terry: Yeah, of course. I didn’t have a clue. It was funny because after that, I phoned Bobby Barnes from the PFA about it. He told me I had quite a few votes and was in the running. But even then, I never dreamed of winning it. Only Paul McGrath (in 1993) and Gary Pallister (1992) had won it as defenders. I’d been struggling with my toe that year. If you have a chance of winning, they tell you to come along to the awards just in case. But I told Bobby I needed to know whether I’d won because I wouldn’t have been able to get my shoes on! Before every training session and game, I had to have an injection. So, that night, our doctor came to the hotel, gave me a jab that lasted three hours so I could get my shoes on to go on stage! As I was coming off stage, the jab started wearing off and I was thinking ‘I’ve got to get out of here!’
Carragher: I had absolute respect for you as a player but, I’ll be honest, we couldn’t stand Chelsea at Liverpool back then. Was it the same for you with us? At the end of my career, I’d played against Chelsea 45 times. You’ll be the same, as you were in all those games…
Terry: You know what, every time we got drawn together, we kept thinking ‘let’s have it’. The rivalry was there for the fans and we loved coming up against you and Stevie. It was massive. The (Champions League) semi-final in 2005. We were 30 points or something ahead of you in the table. We should have rolled you over. But the thing about Liverpool was that hunger, that fight. The fans, the passion. You and Stevie. It was everything.
Carragher: What do you remember most about that night? The Luis Garcia ‘ghost’ goal, of course, but…
Terry: (dead pan) What goal? What goal?
Carragher: The ghost goal! It’s Chelsea’s ghost, not ours! But at the end of the game, the first thing I wanted to do was go over and see you. I knew how much you had given. Every game we played was either 0-0 or 1-0. As a defender, I was going in thinking, if someone gets the better of me, that’s it.
Terry: You never forget moments like that. But don’t you think as defenders, we get nerves that midfielders and strikers just don’t get? As a defender, you have to be so mentally strong. You could have two or three games consecutively where you are at fault for a goal. As a midfielder, if you lose your runner, nobody thinks about it, do they? Lose your marker as a centre half, it’s all your fault.
Carragher: The level of concentration and intensity around those games. At the time, you just get on with it but now you look back at it and you think ‘Chelsea? Champions League semi-final?’
Terry: I can imagine what Rafa (Benitez) would have had you doing in the days beforehand, having experienced it here. We were similar (in our preparations). After the game, you are dead, aren’t you? You are blown to bits.
Carragher: I think we had a hold on you because we played you at your own game. Arsenal and Man United tried to play football against you. We wouldn’t have dreamed of doing that, we weren’t good enough. We’d knock it long to Peter Crouch or to Dirk Kuyt to pressure Ashley Cole…
Terry: How good was Kuyt in those games? You would watch him week after week and think to yourself… But then he played against us and, like everyone else, he would be a level up.
A club legend, Terry has played 78 times for his country, scoring six goals in that time. However, his time and exit from the national team was shrouded in controversy, and the defender says that he wished he reached the 100 cap milestone:
Carragher: How do you look back at your England career?
Terry: You know what, I loved it up until a certain point when everything went on. It disappointed me, more than anything. I look back on my 78 caps and I’m unbelievably proud. I was captain for two spells. It’s the biggest honour you can have in football. As a kid, it’s the thing that everyone wants. I’m just disappointed with how it ended, really. I never saw myself walking away. It took something that big to say enough is enough. Once you get to 50 caps, then 60, then 70… I had a target of 100 caps. That is all I ever wanted to do. Number one was to play for England, second was to be captain and third was to get 100 caps. I’ll watch games now and it kills me. I don’t miss being away. No chance. I get to spend time with my kids, I get to see them play. I get a few days off and have family time. But I watch England games and think ‘I could have been playing there’. I could have been there last summer. I had one more cap than Wazza (Wayne Rooney) when I retired. I would have been there or thereabouts, so that kind of eats away.
Carragher: Fabio Capello resigned in 2012 when he disagreed with the FA’s decision to take the captaincy off you. Have you spoken to him much since then?
Terry: I’m still in contact with him. It’s really strange. I didn’t have that kind of relationship with him as captain. You know what it was like — he was hard. But we still speak, we text. It’s bizarre. How he stood up for me, given the character that he was, meant everything to me. I gave everything to England. In Portugal in 2004, I missed the birth of my kids as I was away with England. I missed the best day of my life. So the way it finished saddens me, if I’m honest. It was the best thing ever, going away and representing England.
Carragher: How did you get over it then? How did you cope knowing that people last season were saying you were the best English centre half and should be playing? Did you just have to draw a line?
Terry: Definitely that. In the back of my mind, something was saying ‘come back, get to 100 caps — show a bit back at them’. That was me kind of being ‘never give up’. That’s why when I was an England player I said I would never walk away. So (to do) it was something massive. When you have gone through everything as a player, you’ve been away with them, played with injections to get through games and to get turned over, it really saddens you. The fight inside me wanted to go back and play. I wanted to get to 100 caps because I would have been captain. They told me that I’d never be captain again but if I got to 100 caps, you are captain. That was the mentality I had in every game I watched.
At present, however, Terry is currently out with an ankle injury picked up on Champions League duty. Jose Mourinho’s men have had a near-disastrous campaign thus far. They sit in 14th, having won just four of their 14 league games and crashed out of the League Cup. But, Terry has said that the club will endure their poor run of form, and the quality of the squad will lift the team back up:
Carragher: I expected domination again from Chelsea this season. That’s why it has all been such a shock. People can’t believe a team managed by Jose is having this run.
Terry: We were so good last season, teams sat off. But two games into this season and we get beat (by Manchester City). Everyone saw that and thought ‘we can give them a run for their money here’. You get beaten again and the mentality changes. Teams come and have a go at you.
Carragher: You are taken off at half-time against Man City. What do you think?
Terry: Listen, you take it in your stride. I was more shocked than anything. But I took it and went out to watch the second half. I’ve got that mentality where you go in the next day, work your socks off and think to yourself ‘right, I’ll show you’. There is no point moaning, sulking or staying in the dressing room. That’s not me. I’ve got to where I am in my career by fronting things up. So I did and I knew, sooner or later, he’d put me back in.
Carragher: Even at this stage of your career, does something like that put doubt in your mind?
Terry: Yeah, of course. It’s a game-and-a-half into the season. Against Swansea on the opening day, I thought I played well. I had a shaky 45 minutes against (Sergio) Aguero, who is one of the best strikers in the world. But if you go back to the last seven or eight games I’d played against him, he hadn’t got a sniff. Maybe I was due that. But you do lose a bit (of confidence) for sure. I think you pay more attention (to the criticism), too.
Carragher: People have been saying this year that ‘John Terry’s legs have gone’ but they haven’t gone — you never had them! I was the same.
Terry: But that’s lazy, isn’t it? You get to a stage and people say ‘that’s wrong’ but they don’t back it up. You’ve been there. You’ve played. You know your legs ain’t gone. It takes a little bit longer to recover but when you’re ready and the adrenaline pumps in, you are fine. I’ve never been quick.
Carragher: Exactly! You’ve always been towing a caravan!
Terry: (much laughter) Thanks!
Carragher: You reach a point and start to think twice about doing things that were natural rather just thinking ‘I’m doing it’…
Terry: Yeah, it’s not relying on your instincts, which you have made your name on. It (anxiety) does set in but then you hit the ground, have a couple of wins and you are fine again. But this hasn’t happened to me much in my career, so it (the attention) definitely does (have an impact). I don’t care what anyone says. It hits you a little bit.
Carragher: How do you cope with going from being a regular to not a guaranteed starter?
Terry: It’s different for centre halves. I don’t know what you think but as a midfielder, you can miss a game and come back. As a centre half, you are either playing or you’re not.
Carragher: That’s it: as a centre half, you are never going to come off and you are not going to come on if you are sub. When I was out the team under Kenny (Dalglish), I was thinking to myself ‘I could be out the team for months, here’. But, listen, this season the team hasn’t played well — what is different about the club to bad runs that you have had before?
Terry: It’s not different. The league table says it’s different but it isn’t. If you look for stuff (that is wrong) you will find it. You could sit there after a game and find a million things. I’d prefer to say ‘s*** result, let’s just move on’. I’ve had some managers who overanalyse things but nothing is there. Some will see that you have conceded goals at set pieces, so they will practise 20 corners. It does nothing. If anything, it does the opposite. It highlights things and makes people worry. So the manager (Mourinho) has just been like ‘let’s get on with it’. The quality is there, everything is there.
Carragher: The only difference is the manager hasn’t been sacked!
Terry: Listen, his stability is massive for the club going forward. What the club have done is set a precedent and said he’s the man to take us forward. He will do. This squad of players won the league last season. There is no difference. It’s a bad run of form. Really bad. When you have been at the top for so long, it’s horrible. You don’t want to go out after games, you don’t want to show your face in public. It’s that level.
The 34-year old has also spoken of what the future may hold. With his contract set to expire at the end of the current season, Terry has confirmed that he wouldn’t play for another English team, and may follow in the footsteps of former Red Steven Gerrard by moving to America. He has also named himself in his all-time Chelsea XI.
Carragher: Your contract is up in the summer. If Chelsea don’t offer you something, do you know your next move? Or are you just going to wait and see what happens?
Terry: I think I’ll wait, yeah. I don’t know at the minute. As you get older, you start to look down that route. I’m doing my coaching badges at the minute. I’m looking at TV. I’ve done some bits for Sky and BT…
Carragher: We’re after someone, you know! Are you doing anything this Monday?!
Terry: (laughs) When you have the security of those contracts for four or five years, you are fully focused on that. But when you get to those year-on-years… I was going to ask you a question, actually. When did you know you were going to call it a day?
Carragher: I knew 18 months before. As soon as I wasn’t a regular, I had 18 months left on my contract. I knew then I wanted to go. I’d worked for ITV at Euro 2012. I’d started my coaching badges — I wouldn’t say I loved it — but I’d enjoyed TV. When I met Brendan Rodgers for the first time, I told him I had 12 months left on my deal and I was going to go at the end. It was killing me training and not playing…
Terry: That’s always been my mentality. I have never known (how) players can go week after week not playing. This is the first time in my career where I have not been a regular in the team. I couldn’t see myself doing that for a year or two years. But, at the same time, I couldn’t even begin to think about being somewhere else or playing for someone else. Chelsea is my club. I’ve been here 20 years. I’ve looked into coaching. Playing-wise, (if I went) it certainly wouldn’t be here.
Carragher: So you couldn’t play for anyone else in England?
Terry: No. No chance. No chance. America, maybe. But physically I feel like I can still play. Do I want to play? Of course I do. But then decisions come in to it with your family. What if you go somewhere and it doesn’t work out? Everything else comes into play, doesn’t it?
Carragher: Do you look at your loan spell at Nottingham Forest in April 2000 with any regret? You played six games for someone else other than Chelsea. If it hadn’t been for those games, you could have been like a Maldini, Baresi, Giggs, Carragher! You know, one club men…
Terry: (laughs) It’s a funny story actually. Chelsea wanted to sell me then. They had agreed a deal with Huddersfield. After my loan at Forest, I was supposed to go to Huddersfield. Steve Bruce was their manager. Gianluca Vialli was manager here and he knew David Platt at Forest. But I did well in those games, I started five and came on in the other. Chelsea wanted more money then decided they didn’t want to sell as I’d done well. I came back and got on the bench for the FA Cup final.
Carragher: Have you been close to moving at any point since? Did it ever cross your mind?
Terry: No. There was the thing with Manchester City. They offered £29million for me in 2009 and Chelsea turned it down. I had a meeting with Roman (Abramovich) about it. I said to him, if the club accepts the offer then it tells me you don’t want me. So then you haven’t got a choice, you have got to go. But if they don’t accept the offer, it tells me everything that I need to know. Chelsea refused the offer and that was it.
Carragher: One final thing — give us your all-time Chelsea XI…
Terry: I’ve never done this before! I’m going to play 4-3-3. So we’ll say, Cech, Ivanovic, Carvalho, Ash. I’m putting myself in! (long pause) Now this is where it gets hard… Lamps… Didier (Drogba)… Robben (puffs cheeks out), (Damien) Duffer was good, wasn’t he? But it’s got to be Hazard in that position. Then Makelele, plus Zola. It’s got to be him, hasn’t it? We’d be s*** at corners but we’d be all right otherwise!
Jose Mourinho has said that he provided Eden Hazard with written feedback as he was so impressed with the Belgian’s display.
Hazard was played as a lone striker against Tottenham Hotspur last Sunday, and turned heads as he created several chances.
And speaking ahead of Chelsea’s game against Bournemouth, Mourinho was quick to praise the Belgian:
“The performance was good in every aspect, he knows that because he got the feedback,” said Mourinho.
“He even got written feedback because we analysed his performance in great detail and I felt it was good for him to get the written document and graphics. He knows how good he was and hopefully he can build from now. He knows how much we need him.
“It had lots of everything; my comments, my feedback, my vision, numbers, figures and stats,’ Mourinho added, when asked what the document contained. ‘Because he was so impressive I felt he needed that and he also needed to know his efforts were recognised by me. With that attitude and that dynamic defensively he can play in every position: 9, 10, 7, 11, no problem.’”
Mourinho said in yesterday’s pre-match press conference Diego Costa was part of the squad for today’s game, but did not confirm whether or not the striker would start against Eddie Howe’s side.
He is, however, hopeful Diego Costa can recapture the form which saw him pose such a threat to opposition defences last season.
“To be fair he’s better in his integration, he’s speaking a bit of English and his communication is much better,” said Mourinho.
“Last season at the beginning he belonged to a group of Spanish and Brazilian guys, now he belongs to the whole group and they all enjoy him.
“He always trains very well. On the pitch he’s not been so sharp and having so much influence in consecutive matches, but that’s football.”
Earlier this week the first team squad enjoyed a night out together in London, but only after they had consulted the manager:
“It was their dinner, their night, their responsibility,” Mourinho explained.
“I think their wives are in control, I don’t think they would be going home at 6am. The feedback from everyone was good. It was nice for players like Marco Amelia, Pedro and Papy because they’ve never been out with the other guys, it was the first time they’ve done it this season.
“I didn’t get those tubes the police use to test (alcohol levels), my tools are the training ground, the next morning and the next session. When I saw the session I know what they did the night before, it’s easy to know and the session was good for everyone.”
Former Chelsea striker Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink has become the new manager of Championship side QPR.
The Dutchman, who spent four years at Stamford Bridge, has joined the R’s on a rolling contract and has thus left his job as manager of League 1 side Burton Albion, who he joined in November.
Hasselbaink, who steered Burton to the top of the third tier despite this being their debut season in the division, replaces Chris Ramsey who was sacked in early November.
Rangers are 11th in the Championship table, two points outside the play-off places, and former Netherlands international Hasselbaink said the club has “an exciting feel about it”.
“I feel that this is a club on the up,” he added.
“I am happy to get the opportunity here at QPR, to lead the QPR family, be at the front of it all, put my stamp on things and take the club forward.
“This is an incredibly proud moment for me and I will give my all to represent the badge of the club.”
The 43-year old joined Chelsea in 2000 after a successful season at Atletico Madrid, and in four years made 136 appearances, scoring 70 goals. He has also played for Leeds United, Middlesbrough, Charlton Athletic and Cardiff City.
Ahead of Chelsea’s game against Bournemouth at Stamford Bridge tomorrow (17:30 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 4th December.
Chelsea win: SB – 4/11, L – 4/11, C – 4/11
Draw: SB – 7/2, L –15/4, C – 4/1
Bournemouth win: SB – 8/1, L – 8/1, C – 8/1
Josh King: SB – 10/1, L – 12/1, C – 9/1
Matt Ritchie: SB – 12/1, L – 16/1, C – 14/1
Junior Stanislas: SB – 14/1, L – 16/1, C – 16/1
Andrew Surman: SB – 28/1, L – 28/1, C – 25/1
Glenn Murray: SB – 10/1, L – 10/1, C – 9/1
No goalscorer: SB – 14/1, L – 12/1, C – 11/1
Eden Hazard: SB – 4/1, L – 4/1, C – 9/2
Oscar: SB – 11/2, L – 6/1, C – 6/1
Willian: SB – 6/1, L – 6/1, C – 13/2
Diego Costa: SB – 7/2, L – 7/2, C – 4/1
Pedro: SB – 9/2, L – 5/1, C – 11/2
1-0: SB – 13/2, L – 6/1, C – 13/2
2-0: SB – 6/1, L – 11/2, C – 11/2
2-1: SB – 7/1, L – 15/2, C – 15/2
3-0: SB – 9/1, L – 8/1, C – 15/2
3-1: SB – 10/1, L – 10/1, C – 10/1
0-0: SB – 14/1, L – 12/1, C – 14/1
1-1: SB – 7/1, L – 8/1, C – 8/1
2-2: SB – 16/1, L – 18/1, C – 18/1
3-3: SB – 66/1, L – 66/1, C – 66/1
4-4: SB – 250/1, L – 275/1, C – 150/1
1-0: SB – 18/1, L – 20/1, C – 25/1
2-0: SB – 40/1, L – 50/1, C – 55/1
2-1: SB – 20/1, L – 22/1, C – 25/1
3-0: SB – 100/1, L – 125/1, C – 125/1
3-1: SB – 50/1, L – 75/1, C – 70/1
Chelsea will look to remain unbeaten after the international break as they face Bournemouth tomorrow at Stamford Bridge (17:30 GMT KO).
The Blues have performed well in recent weeks, winning two of their last three games and not conceding a goal in that time.
Bournemouth currently sit two points inside the relegation zone, with injuries having severely blighted their campaign thus far. Last week theyb came back from behind twice in a thrilling 3-3 draw with Everton.
With this being the Cherries’ debut season in the top flight, Jose Mourinho’s side haven’t faced Bournemouth since the 1988-89 season.
Last five games:
Chelsea: LWLWWD (includes two Champions League games).
Bournemouth: LLLLDD (includes one League Cup game).
– Thibaut Courtois returns for Chelsea after three months out.
– Nemanja Matic does feature but will have to play with a face mask after breaking his nose.
– John Terry, Radamel Falcao and Ramires are however all out with injuries.
– Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe didn’t say if keeper Adam Federici was fit. If both he and Artur Boruc are unable to play, youngster Ryan Allsop will make his first Premier League start.
– Midfielder Harry Arter is out with a hamstring injury.
– Chelsea have won four of their last five meetings with Bournemouth in all competitions.
– Should the Blues keep a clean sheet, it will be their best defensive streak in 12 months.
– If Cesar Azpilicueta plays it will be his 100th Premier League appearance for Chelsea.
– The Cherries’ tally of 30 goals conceded is the joint highest in the Premier League, along with Newcastle.
– They have conceded a league-high four penalties this season.
Starting XI last time out in the Premier League:
Chelsea (away vs. Tottenham Hotspur, drew 0-0): Begovic, Ivanovic, Zouma, Cahill, Azpilicueta, Matic, Willian, Fabregas, Pedro, Oscar, Hazard.
Bournemouth (home vs. Everton, drew 3-3): Federici, Francis, Cook, Distin, Daniels, Ritchie, Gosling, Surman, Stanislas, Arter, King.
Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe is convinced that the match against Chelsea could not be scheduled at a better time, as his team is recently in a really good form.
”Naturally it is a really good challenge for all of us. These are the games you want to be involved in.”
”You want to be able to compete with the top (managers). He (Mourinho) has a record that is unrivalled.”
”I didn’t expect to be so close to them (in the table) but I think they are in a false position (14th). I am sure they will pick up points and climb.”
”We are playing the champions. For me they are one of the best teams in the country.”
”We are not underestimating the team. We fully respect them as a team and we are going to have to be at our very best to get anything.”
On the 3-3 draw against Everton in the last game :
”Those contrasting emotions in the last few minutes were so extreme.”
”The Premier League, for me, has been about picking up points where you can and we have done it in style.Now it’s about adding wins to those performances.”
”From our perspective, we are really happy with the last four games apart from the first few minutes against Southampton (2-0 defeat on November 1) where we thought we were poor – we are building momentum.”
On his player’s injuries:
”Whenever you get injuries, it is a test and a challenge for your squad to adapt and I think we have done that with the outfield positions.”
”Certain people have been given opportunities that maybe would not have expected to get them, but they have grasped them in recent weeks.”
”I think whoever is called upon will step up and help the team.”