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Everything posted by DYC.

  1. Didier Drogba

    Didier Drogba proves why he has to be Chelsea's top dog - and that means Fernando Torres must start on the bench against Manchester United Struggling Spaniard can make bigger impact as a substitute against Manchester United, but the Ivorian powerhouse must be the one to lead the Blues' line on Tuesday By Wayne Veysey at Stamford Bridge Apr 10, 2011 9:30:00 AM There are some big beasts in the Chelsea jungle. But there is only one top dog – and that is Didier Drogba. Following Fernando Torres' deadline-day switch, a pack of feared predators have been queuing up to bare their teeth at the point of the attack. But on the evidence of the audition for Tuesday's season-hinging match at Manchester United, only Drogba has the bite to compliment the bark. Chelsea's centre-forward required careful guarding against Wigan Athletic. He ran the channels, bashed defenders out of the way in a manner in which only he can, created space for others with smart movement and banged in shots from all angles whenever he had a sniff of goal. In manager-speak, he put in a shift. He was also wasteful, too, in his desire to breach the dam erected by Roberto Martinez and prove he is lord of the manor at the Bridge. Excellent free-kick positions were wasted and team-mates were sometimes ignored as he strove in search of something that would guarantee his master's approval. Carlo Ancelotti claims he already knows his team and the system he will play at Old Trafford in the quarter-final second leg. He provided a big hint by binning 4-4-2 and starting with the 4-3-3 formation that has been Chelsea's bread and butter since the Jose Mourinho days. Drogba alone up front, Nicolas Anelka and Florent Malouda either side of him and a three-man midfield patrolled by Frank Lampard, Ramires and John Obi-Mikel. Like John Terry, who was not in the matchday squad, Torres and Michael Essien were 'rested'. Feeling blue | Torres has failed to score in 648 minutes at Chelsea since deadline-day move As a dress rehearsal, it can be said to only have been a partial success. By the end of the first half, as Chelsea searched for greater cutting edge, Anelka was playing alongside Drogba. At half-time, the ineffective Mikel was withdrawn and Yossi Benayoun was summoned from the bench for his first Chelsea appearance since September 22. By that point, it was back to the 4-4-2 formation originally introduced to shoehorn Torres into the starting XI. Anelka made way for the Spaniard a third of the way into the second period after linking well with Drogba but failing to offer the kind of threat of which he is capable. Torres' 31-minute performance was a considerable improvement on his previous 617 minutes in the blue shirt. He was industrious, lively and found himself in some excellent goalscoring positions. There was everything but the goal. How the Bridge willed him to break his Chelsea duck. Malouda's goal coaxed Wigan out of their half and provided the kind of space behind the centre halves that would have been an amusement park for the Torres of two years ago. One Drogba cross narrowly avoided his lunging body. A long ball from the back sent him clear on goal but Torres' first touch, not for the first time in a desperate 10 weeks in west London, let him down. With the clock counting down, Benayoun side-footed a short pass into his path in the penalty area with no Wigan defenders in sight. The crowd held its breath as Torres shaped to pull the trigger. Surely, this would be it. Torres' connection with the outside of his right boot was true. The ball was heading for the back of the net. But Ali Al Habsi, whose reflexes had been in good working order all afternoon, stretched out his arm at the last millisecond and diverted the ball to safety. It was a mighty fine save but something is still missing for the Chelsea No. 9. You feel Torres in his 2007-09 pomp would not have given Al Habsi the opportunity to show off his athleticism. With his job and legacy possibly depending on the outcome of the Champions League quarter-final, Ancelotti cannot afford to indulge Roman Abramovich's marquee signing from the start on Tuesday. For the Italian, it has to be Drogba leading the line, with two creators either side of him. Just the way the Ivorian likes it. The support act is not one that suits him or Torres. They both have to be the main man. Malouda is likely to get the nod over Yuri Zhirkov as Saturday's Spring sunshine reawakened the player that had laid dormant for six months. Yossi Benayoun is fit to start after making his first appearance for Chelsea since September 22 on Saturday but it would represent a gamble by Ancelotti to prefer him to Anelka, whose versatility and awareness should guarantee him a starting point. He is also the club's leading scorer this season with 16 goals. Poor Salamon Kalou, scorer of nine goals this season – the same as Torres – will once again be shunted out to the sidelines. Whatever the future of the Big Four strikers holds beyond this season, Ancelotti must concentrate on the here and now. It will suit Chelsea, and perhaps Torres too, for the club's record signing to be an impact substitute against United's tiring defenders. That means letting the club's top Drog off the leash from the first minute. Link
  2. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

    These comments are hilarious.
  3. Alexis Sanchez

    That would be a relief, haha. A bad goalie kills your chances of succes if you ask me. He will destabilise even the very best defence.
  4. Alexis Sanchez

    Utd are the favourites for me. They're more balanced overall, and solid at the back. I have my questions about the Silva-Fernandinho-De Bruyne midfield (off the ball and especially dealing with transitions). And how good is that backline really? Especially without Kompany, who will most likely struggle with his fitness. Walker is good but Mendy still has a bit to learn on the defensive end. Otamendi is good but he has his moments of insanity. Stones... never been a fan, have to see how he develops. GK is a question mark for me because I don't know him. Sanchez could be a game changer though, yeah. It will be interesting.
  5. Alexis Sanchez

    That's what I think too. Very sensible move if they pull it off. You need a lot more than Sané and Sterling to make waves in the CL. Even for the PL that's a light strike force. Sanchez could make the difference.
  6. Alexis Sanchez

    Sanchez to City makes perfect sense. City have two wingers and they're both prospects. Sanchez, Sane and Sterling (unless the rumours of him leaving are true) for the flanks and Jesus and Aguero up top. (Bernardo isn't the type of player Guardiola has been known to use as a forward. Not on a regular basis anyways.)
  7. Ross Barkley

    I was arguing Pizy on his talent level, not his possible effectiveness at RWB. Of course he's better footballer than Moses. But everyone went crazy about Moses at first and now I constantly see comments about Moses being average, which he's always been. I personally don't believe in the so-called magic of Conte. He can't make a player better than he is. But yeah, you would imagine him to function better in a superior unit. That's if he adapts to the role though. I have my doubts about his stamina levels. It's a high energy role and he's never been a high energy player. I also wonder about his tactical awareness and his personal willingness to play the role, but we'll see if he joins.
  8. Ross Barkley

    No point in being a good dribbler if you don't follow it up with quality, creative play. Football has seen a lot of good dribblers. If Hazard would get past players yet do nothing of true value afterwards, he would not have survived at Chelsea, let alone thrive. Same goes for speed and strength. Remember Obafemi Martins? Ineffective without good positional sense/movement.
  9. Ross Barkley

    I don't see this insane potential. Neither possess any exceptional qualities which set them apart from their peers.
  10. Ross Barkley

    English talents are so painfully overrated. They get to produce nothing for years yet still hold the title of 'massive talent'. All based on a couple of flashes of quality over a period of years. I just don't get it. It's the same thing over and over again. That's not great talent. That's a decent/average player having a good day every now and again, rather than some huge prospect who mysteriously manages to underperform for years. I'm not saying they're not talented but the level of their talent, and others like them (not just the English), are overestimated by many. I welcome both though. HG players are needed and it's not like Chels can sign the likes of Verratti, Neymar etc.
  11. Kylian Hazard

    Man, I need to change my name and link up with Eden on some long, lost brother ting.
  12. 3. Marcos Alonso

    He's not a fullback. Well, okay, he makes a decent fullback but he's not a defender. He's at home in that left midfield role. Played there for Fiorentina and now here. Think that's the reason why Conte never switched back to a back four. And if he did, I'm sure we'd see Azpilicueta at leftback before Alonso.
  13. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

    I feel like the expectations are way too high. If he joins, Chelsea fans should realise the club didn't sign prime Dani Alves or Carvajal. Ox is an experiment at wingback. He possesses the physical and technical attributes for the position, but the question is if he possesses the tactical acumen and mental fortitude for the role. He was never my favourite option for the role but I would like to see him join because I think he's a better footballer than Moses. Easily. And if he isn't good enough at wingback, he at least provides a decent back-up on the wings.
  14. The English Football Thread

    I was wrong about Mané as I thought he was a Willian level player. Obviously different players but I rated them on a similar quality level. He's not the most technically gifted player but he's a problem in the final third and not as reliant on space as I thought. Effective in his use of both feet. Very good player.
  15. The Conte Thread

    Decision to switch back to 3-4-3 and playing Fabregas in the middle turned out to be spot on. Well done, sir.
  16. Chelsea 2-0 Everton

    Decent first half. Chels look good pretty good until they reach the final third. That's when the precision and invention is lacking. But the boys have made the best out of a few opportunities so I have to applaud the finishing today. Excellent reactionary finish by Cesc and great cross from Cesar. All this pre-match talk had me thinking Everton were gonna be a problem. But they've been awful, haha. Kante and Alonso yet again the best players on the pitch for me. Fabregas grew as the game went on after an anonymous start. Morata quietly racking up the stats with two goals and two assists to his name so far. Keep it up, son. Hope his game outside of the goals and assists grows. But if he continues to score and provide at this rate I obviously won't complain. This win is in the bag. I don't care how Everton come out in the 2nd half, can't allow them to get back in this game. Keep on the pressure and add a third goal. A clean sheet would be nice.
  17. Champions League thread

    Not with the elite but, in terms of individual quality, you'd think Courtois, Luiz, Azpilicueta, Alonso, Kanté, Fabregas, Hazard and Pedro would be able to measure up with that group of teams below the elite. Even new boys Christensen, Rudiger, Bakayoko and Morata. But as a collective... I don't know. Chels need to be much better in possession. Much better. You can't give the ball away so cheaply. The quality of build-up play needs to improve significantly. Same goes for delivering that final ball and the level of finishing. This team can battle though and I love how they can substantially improve the performance levels in the second half. But the whole 'let's sit back, hoof the ball up and play long balls, make the best of a few opportunities' game plan is dead in the CL. That truly annoyed me under previous managers. Hope we don't see that. I don't have much faith in the 3-4-3 system in the CL though. Definitely not with this centre midfield and these wingbacks, like you already alluded to.
  18. Champions League thread

    Nice. Don't know how far Chels will go but some good battles in Europe regardless. Will be very interesting to see how Chelsea will fare against Atletico and Roma as I honestly how good this team is outside the PL.
  19. 3. Marcos Alonso

    I hear Nsync music in my head when I see him.
  20. Spurs 1-2 Chelsea

    That was horrible. And I don't care. Now to soak in the hate.
  21. 3. Marcos Alonso

    Beautiful, beautiful man with the '01 boyband hair. Bless you, son.
  22. Spurs 1-2 Chelsea

    They have more quality but they sure don't know how to bring a win home like Chels. Chels love a good struggle init, haha. Forever underdogs.
  23. Spurs 1-2 Chelsea

    He really wasn't. Bringing on fresh legs up top made sense as Spurs were looking shaky. It's a shame but it's not his fault. As in, he's not to blame for this. He's had plenty of good moments coming of the bench as well. GOAAAAAAALLLLLLLL!!!!!! HAHAHAHAHAHA FUCK SPURS.
  24. Spurs 1-2 Chelsea

    10 min left. Come on, steal a win. A corner, a free-kick, an intervention from The Avengers, the Hand of Buddha. Anything
  25. Spurs 1-2 Chelsea

    Mehh, it was coming. It's a shame it had to fall like that but I'm not gonna blame the lad. Fuck.