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chelsea

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Jose Mourinho believes that the title race is still open, despite Chelsea being seven points clear with a game in hand.

The Blues face QPR in a London derby on Sunday, but the 52-year old Chelsea boss is not taking anything for granted even in this late stage.

When asked which teams, if any, were a threat to Chelsea, Mourinho said: “All of them. Mathematically, it’s open. Every team with 21 points distance to us, mathematically, is in the race. But being objective, a team with seven, eight, nine points difference is obviously still in the race.”

One of the shocks this season has been the decline of Manchester City – they currently sit in a lowly fourth, despite being the current Champions. But Mourinho isn’t surprised by the unexpected demise.

“No I’m not surprised because this is the Premier League. In other competitions, it’s difficult to believe that the top team can lose four, five, six, seven matches in a season. It’s very difficult. In almost every country it’s very difficult for the top teams to lose so many matches. But here, yes, here it’s possible.

“So no, I’m not surprised. It’s happening to everybody, everybody loses matches and everybody loses points.”

After Manchester City’s shock 2-1 defeat to Crystal Palace, many are calling Chelsea ‘Champions Elect’. This could become reality if Chelsea beat Arsenal and other results go their way.

 

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moses
moses

On-loan Chelsea striker Victor Moses is scheduled to make a return to Chelsea at the end of the current season.

The Nigerian is currently on-loan at Stoke City.

But, the 24-year-old stated that although he’s loved his time with Potters. he isn’t considering another year with the Staffordshire side. This is despite Mark Hughes stating that he would love it if Moses stayed at the Britannia Stadium.

“I just want to help Stoke as best as I can to finish as high as I can. As I’ve said before, I’m still a Chelsea player.

“I’m here to do a professional job for Stoke and will do my best to help them finish in the top eight. That’s my aim.

“It’s been nice to hear the manager say he’d like me to stay. He’s a great manager and he’s done well for this club.”

He added: “Before I came here I spoke to him and it looked like the club was heading in the right direction. That’s the main reason I came here on loan. I’m enjoying my football here and the style of play suits me.”

Moses has made 22 appearances for Stoke this season, scoring four goals in the process. He has also been on-loan to Liverpool since he signed for Chelsea for £9 million in 2012.

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solanke
solanke

Chelsea’s U19 side have reached the UEFA Youth League Final after beating Roma 4-0 in the semi-final in Nyon.

Despite a goalless first half, Chelsea scored three in nine minutes effectively sealed the game and ensured Adi Viveash’s side’s progression to the Final.

A cagey first half did see Chelsea fashion some good chances – Charlie Colkett’s early chance in particular drawing a good save from Roma keeper Gabriele Marchegiani. Chelsea captain Izzy Brown also forced two good saves in quick succession from the Roma shot-stopper.

Roma however did cause a threat at times – Lorenzo Pellegrini struck just wide late on in the half.

Chelsea’s first half pressure paid off as the Young Blues scored twice in the first four minutes of the second half. After good work from Brown, a good run from Colkett was rewarded when the ball fell to him, the midfielder’s low strike taking a deflection off a defender and going past the wrong-footed keeper.

Dominic Solanke then chased down a long ball, beating Marchegiana to the loose ball and confidently lobbing the ball over the onrushing the keeper into the empty net.

Viveash’s men then all but ended the tie as they scored a third. Colkett found space in the box to head Jeremie Boga’s cross towards goal. His header was spilled by the Roma goalkeeper, and Solanke punished him, scoring his 11th goal in the competition. The 17-year old is the competition’s leading goalscorer.

Roma did still contain a threat, particularly through set-pieces. Roma midfielder Daniele Verde came closest with a freekick just after the hour mark, which stung the palms of Chelsea keeper Bradley Collins.

However, Roma’s efforts meant nothing as Chelsea added a fourth late on. Substitute Tammy Abraham combined well with fellow substitute Kasey Palmer to turn in the latter’s cross.

The dominant performance will send the U19 side into the final against Shaktar Donetsk full of confidence. Donetsk beat Aderlecht 3-1 in the other semi-final. The final, that will be played next Monday, will kick off again in Nyon at 3pm GMT.

 

Chelsea: Collins, Aina (Tomori, 89′),Christensen, Clarke-Salter (YC), Dasilva, Colkett, Loftus-Cheek, Izzy Brown (C), Musonda (Abraham, 75′), Boga (Palmer, 71′), Solanke

Subs not used: Thompson, Suljic, Scott, Ugbo

 

Roma: Marchegiani, Anocic (YC) (Ciavattini, 89′), Calabresi, Verde, Pellegrini (C, YC), Sanabria (Vestenicky, 45′), Di Mariano (YC) (Ndoj, 77′), Paolelli, Marchizza, D’Urso, Machin

Subs not used: Pop, De Santis, Adamo, Ciavattini, Soleri

 

 

 

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TERRY

John Terry revealed through social media his choice for the PFA Player of the Year award.

The Chelsea captain chose Philippe Coutinho as his young player of the season, and he posted the picture of his voting card on his Instagram account.

He wrote: “My PFA Team of the year @iamryanbertrand @juanmatagarcia @harrykane”

terry5005
Terry also revealed some of his picks for the PFA team of the year.

David De Gea, Laurent Koscielny and Juan Mata featured in his ideal 11, based on performances in the Premier League this season.

Finally, Harry Kane is his choice for the PFA prize. The Tottenham striker, who has been a surprise star turn in the Spurs team, has scored 19 goals and made three assists for the North London side in 27 games for them this season. He also contributed to the scoresheet as Spurs overcame Chelsea at White Hart Lane this January (5-3 the final result).

 

 

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Pellegrini
Pellegrini

Despite having dropped fourth in the table, Pellegerini stated in today’s press conference in his opinion this season is not a disaster for Citizens.

He remains optimistic, commenting the last defeats saying: “We have lost the last three (away) games, but the last two with two goals in set-pieces, against Burnley and Palace.”

“We hope we continue keeping the good things we are doing because we are not a disaster, we’re not a mess. We are doing a lot of things well.”

“We must improve because we are not having the results we need but never in my way of thinking are we happy with a draw.”

 

City won the last four derbies and another victory could set a new record: City have never won five derbies in succession before and nor has any side in Premier League history beaten United on five consecutive occasions.

That could provide extra motivation for City. And Pellegrini feels the club are still looking at the former United boss Sir Alex Ferguson’s “noisy neighbours” as a dominant to defeat at every cost.

Pellegrini said: “I think the first motivation is always to win. After that motivation is (comes from) against whom you are going to (try to) win, being a derby against a strong team like Manchester United.”

“They dominated the league for so many years but one time Sir Alex Ferguson said the neighbours are disturbing them a little bit more – so I say that’s double motivation for us.”

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Ramsey took over at QPR after Harry Redknapp's departure

Queens Park Rangers manager Chris Ramsey admitted that he will have no problem shaking the hand of John Terry before Sunday’s match against Chelsea at Loftus Road.

Why the need of this clarification? We need to go back to September 2012, when Terry was banned for four games and fined £220,000 for racist comments made towards Anton Ferdinand – Rio’s brother – during QPR’s 1-0 victory against Chelsea at Loftus Road a year earlier.

Ramsey, the Premier League’s only black manager, thinks the issue has been dealt with.

“Ultimately John Terry is a player of Chelsea. I am a manager of QPR. As a man, as a person, I would shake his hand.

“I don’t know what his feelings are towards me. As long as there wasn’t anything on the field that wasn’t unprofessional by him, I would shake his hand.”

He added: “The whole episode for British society sat uncomfortably. It’s not something we want to highlight in football. It happened and it’s being dealt with. We have to move on. And hopefully everyone has learned something from it.”

Ramsey also revealed that Ferdinand won’t be fit to play against Chelsea this weekend, yet he suspects the Blues’ captain may receive a hostile welcome from the home fans during his first return to the ground since the episode.

“Rio has unfortunately got an injury, he’s had a knock, and it’s recurring, he keeps trying to train. He will train this morning. He’s something we miss immensely. We miss his leadership qualities on the pitch. Unfortunately, he won’t be involved in the game.”

About fans’ attitude towards Terry: “Fans are fans aren’t they? [Terry’s return] is a subject that brings up a lot of different emotions. So, it would be odd to think that there isn’t going to be an extra feeling towards that situation.”

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Juventus are believed to be considering moves for both Oscar and former Chelsea Player of the Year Juan Mata, should Paul Pogba and Carlos Tevez leave Turin as expected.

Pogba is considered to be one of the brightest young talents in European football and is wanted by just about every big club on the continent.

Chelsea are reportedly front runners for the Frenchman’s signature, with Brazil international Oscar believed to be part of a deal which will bring down the price considerably.

Should Pogba leave, he may well be followed out of the door by Carlos Tevez, best known by supporters in England for a successful if not controversial time between 2006 and 2012 when he played for West Ham United and both Manchester clubs, and left for Italy after apparently never settling into life in the UK.

He is believed to want a move back to his native Argentina, and Juventus have identified Juan Mata as the man to replace him. Mata, who joined Chelsea in 2011, won the Champions League and the FA Cup in his first season, the Europa League in his second as well as two Player of the Year awards at Stamford Bridge. The Spaniard then moved to Manchester United in what was then the Red Devils’ record transfer (£37.1 million) after failing to secure a regular place in the team after Jose Mourinho’s return.

23-year old Oscar has made over 100 appearances since moving from Brazilian side Internacional in 2012 for £25 million. After signing for Chelsea from Valencia in 2011, Mata made 135 appearances for the Blues. He scored 33 goals in that time, having since made 43 appearances for United since moving there in 2014.

 

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HAZARD_STOKE

Eden Hazard says French legend Zinadine Zidane is his favourite player of all time and says he is flattered to be compared to the 1998 World Cup winner.

The comments were made to Chelsea’s official website before Hazard and his teammates make the short trip to Loftus Road to play QPR, and Hazard describes Zidane, considered to be the best player in the world when he was at his peak, as his “role model”. Hazard’s national team coach Marc Wilmots recently compared the Belgian to the man known as ‘Zizou’, and it is a observation he is not alone in making as his compatriot’s skill on the ball and bursts of pace remind many of Zidane drifting past helpless opponents with apparent ease, even if Hazard admits their style of play differ slightly.

“It’s a really nice thing to hear because everyone knows Zidane was my role model; we play a different style, but if I can compare to him then it is a great honour for me.

“I watched him so much when I was younger, almost every game I could. He is my favourite player, for sure.”

Hazard has had his best season yet with Chelsea with 12 goals and 7 assists to his name so far, form that has helped Chelsea to within touching distance of winning their first league title for five years. He is a front runner for both the PFA Fooballer of the Year and Football Writers’ player of the Year awards and is expected to win at least one.

 

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Wallace
Wallace

On loan Chelsea defender Wallace has been arrested by Dutch police, according to Dutch news outlet RTL.

Wallace, who joined Vitesse Arnhem in the summer on loan, was arrested at 4am this morning, but neither his current or parent club have commented so far. The local police have also not been drawn on the matter, however it is being reported by many news outlets that the crime he has been arrested for is of a sexual nature.

The Brazil U-20 international, who has also spent time on loan at Inter Milan, had hoped to return to London and begin his Chelsea career next season. He was quoted in February as saying:

“Nothing is decided yet. That will depend on my form to the end of the season. My only goal is currently to finish well in the Eredivisie. We’ll then see what their decision is. My goal is to return to Chelsea as soon as possible.’’

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Jose Mourinho has confirmed that both Nemanja Matic and Cesc Fabregas will start against QPR despite both players being a booking away from suspension that would keep them out of the vital clashes against Manchester United and Arsenal at the end of this month.

Mourinho, speaking at today’s pre-match press conference, believes his team’s passing style of play makes cautions for either player unlikely, and that not playing one or both of them in Sunday’s west London derby is out of the question.

“I won’t consider leaving them out and they will both start,” the Portuguese told the media.

On Chelsea’s style of play against others, Mourinho claimed Chelsea don’t think about yellow cards and always try and play good football.

“We have idea in the last match (against Stoke City) our opponent made 22 fouls while we made five. It’s been like this for almost the whole season.”

Chelsea are looking to maintain their seven point lead at the top of the table but will face a difficult task away at QPR who are fighting against relegation, and at who’s ground Chelsea have not won a Premier League game since their hosts’ resurgence from Championship mediocrity in the past few years.

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