In the second part of his exclusiveinterview with Goal.com, Ricardo Carvalho talks about Chelsea and whythey have made such a good start to the English Premier League...
Oct 17, 2009 11:28:21 AM
This season more than any since Jose Mourinho left the Blues, Chelseaare showing the promise that could lead them to being crowned leaguechampions. Aside from that one unexplainable hiccup away to WiganAthletic, when they lost 3-1, the team have won every league game sofar and go into this weekend's testing encounter away to Aston Villatwo points clear of Manchester United at the top of the table.
Insome quarters there has been some surprise at how well manager CarloAncelotti has coped with not only the rigours of the English league,but with the language as well. The Italian has got Chelsea playing witha confidence and solidity that suggests that they are going to be hardto breakdown, as Liverpool found to their cost two weeks ago. The Redscame to Stamford Bridge having conquered their hosts there last season,but were comfortably beaten 2-0. It's a victory that defender RicardoCarvalho points to as an example of the strength that exists in the team
“It's clear that we are playing well," he told Goal.com."We've just had one defeat and we have great players and everyone wantsto play well. Basically we are a compact team and we are physicallyvery strong.”
For Carvalho, the key to the early season success is the confidence the rest of the team are getting from their strikers.
“Weare very strong physically up front and, if you think about it, DidierDrogba and Nicolas Anelka are players who are always capable of scoringgoals,” he continued.
The diamond system that Ancelotti hasintroduced at Chelsea is the one key change that has made thedifference from midfield right through to the attack, according to thePortuguese.
“The system allows everyone to play and we havegreat midfield players like [Michael] Ballack, [Michael] Essien,[Frank] Lampard and Deco. And then you have great strikers who can playoff each other. 'Nic' and 'Didier' also really like to play together,”he said.
The fact that the two forwards are adapting to eachothers game so well within this system has also finally laid low theidea that they are not compatible. And Carvalho can see the logic ofthe tactics that Ancelotti has brought in.
“This is a formationthat Carlo was playing in AC Milan," he explained. "He is now using itwith us and he's doing very well with it, so he has no motive tochange. We just have to make sure that we carry on playing well and tryto win our games.”
The big prize that most at Stamford Bridgeare hoping for this season is the Champions League. Ancelotti is verymuch seen by the hierarchy as the man who is capable of delivering onthat front. He took Milan to three Champions League finals. In 2003they beat Juventus in a penalty shoot out. In 2005 they threw away athree goal lead to Liverpool and lost in the shoot out. Then in 2007,he gained revenge against Liverpool, this time winning 2-1.
Chelsea have made a bright start to their European campaign, with a maximum six points out of six.
Butfor all the optimism that surrounds Stamford Bridge, Carvalho isexperienced enough as a player to know that you don't start dreaming ofleague titles and European glory so early on in the season
“Surewe are doing well, but we have just started," he warned. "We have onlyplayed eight games in the league so far. We have to play a few gamesmore and we have to wait a little bit. So far everyone is happy withhow we are doing.”
Ashish Sharma, Goal.com