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West Brom 3-3 Chelsea


Man of the Match  

28 members have voted

  1. 1. Who is your Man of the Match?

    • Caballero
    • James
    • Christensen
    • Silva
    • Alonso
    • Kante
    • Kovacic
    • Mount
    • Werner
    • Havertz
    • Abraham
    • Azpilicueta (sub)
    • Hudson-Odoi (sub)
    • Giroud (sub)

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2 hours ago, MoroccanBlue said:







I think this won't be far off.

I don't think Chilwell's 30 minutes will probably be enough to start at the weekend.

Kante needs to come back in for the midfield balance as Barnsley did have some joy attacking us in the first half. However Barkley has probably now given Lampard some food for thought that he can be trusted to play that deeper position and will offer a more attacking and creative option.

Havertz performance tonight should give Lampard the confidence to just let him off now and impose himself on the game in central areas.

Tammy's performance tonight has probably earned him a place for the weekend, and Werner can be moved to the left to accommodate that.

Even if Pulisic and Ziyech were fit for the weekend, at best it would be on the bench for a 30 minute cameo.

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2 hours ago, prehuman said:


Mount  Mount  Mount  Mount

Mount  Mount  Mount  Mount

            Mount  Mount

I hope you post this on every game thread. It always gives me a chuckle.

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James - Tomori - Zouma - Azpilicueta
---------- Kovacic -  Jorginho
---- Mount ---- Havertz ---- Werner
Definitely need Kante in there I think.

And I doubt azpi starts at left back if he didn't play him vs pool. Especially in a game where we should be the aggressor. It'll be a left footer probably. Maybe chillwell if he's deemed ready.

But mount havertz Werner Abraham looks like a great front 4 for West Brom
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James    Silva    Zouma    Alonso



      Havertz                 Mount


Cho                                       Werner




I think Tammy has matured from last year and he will be perfect partner for Werner and Havertz. I still think Mount is better than RLC/Kovacic/Jorgiho/Barclay.

Would love to see Pulisic come in for 30 Mins.

I thought from the start that this team will need at least 8 games to Gel. There is still major issues with defence, even against Barnsley we were terrible, they could have scored 5.

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The Hawthorns: Where two Chelsea managers lost their jobs



Chelsea will hope to kick-start their Premier League season against West Bromwich Albion on Saturday following an opening home loss to Liverpool last weekend that led to fresh question marks over goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga’s future.

The bad news is that although they clinched the title there in 2017 under Antonio Conte, The Hawthorns has not always been a happy hunting ground for Chelsea managers.

Andre Villas-Boas lost his job the day after a limp 1-0 defeat there in March 2012, then his successor Roberto Di Matteo’s final Premier League game in charge was a 2-1 away loss to former club Albion eight months later.

Villas-Boas feared the worst when he sat in Roy Hodgson’s office after seeing his Chelsea team lose to West Brom and drop to fifth in the table with 11 games to play.

“Roy asked everyone else to go. In his office, it was just Andre and Roy,” recalls Pat Frost, who was Albion’s kitman at the time.

“Roy asked me to fetch them some milk, so he could make him a cup of coffee. I’m not saying someone had told Andre before the game that if he lost he was out, but there was definitely a sense of resignation.”


Sure enough, the Villas-Boas was sacked the next day, with assistant Di Matteo placed in caretaker charge.

“That was a massive result for us and one of my favourite moments in football was just coming off the pitch after that game and seeing the look on Roy Hodgson’s face,” recalls Gareth McAuley, who scored in the 82nd minute to seal Villas-Boas’ fate.

“Roy was smiling and I was smiling and we had a laugh with each other. We were just getting a bit of belief that we could ‘get about’ the bigger teams. There was a belief that we weren’t just turning up for these fixtures, we were competing. For us, it was a massive victory and for me, it was the first big scalp.”

That win over a Chelsea bound for Champions League final glory less than three months later came during one of Albion’s finest spells in the Premier League as they claimed three impressive victories on the bounce.

Two games before, they had battered local rivals Wolverhampton Wanderers 5-1 on their own Molineux patch with a Peter Odemwingie hat-trick that led to Mick McCarthy losing his job as their manager the next day. They followed that up with a 4-0 drubbing of Sunderland at The Hawthorns, with Odemwingie scoring twice more.

But it was McAuley who was the unlikely match-winner against Chelsea.

“It was a set piece that fell to Liam Ridgewell. He headed it back across the goal and I stretched out my left leg to guide it in,” the former defender says. “Pete (Odemwingie) was standing right behind me as well. I’ve got a picture in my house and Pete is swinging behind me, so if I hadn’t scored he would have.”

Frost adds: “The team spirit at the time was unbelievable. It was almost like they felt they could go out and beat anyone. They were full of confidence at that point. The dressing room was a great place to be at the time.

“We’d always have Sky Sports on, with all the goals coming in, and after games (goalkeeping coach) Dean Kiely would come in and instead of saying, ‘How have Sunderland got on?’ or ‘What about Burnley?’, he’d be saying jokingly, ‘How have City and United got on?’”

Villas-Boas’ sacking led to Di Matteo — who had steered Albion up into the Premier League less than two years earlier — taking over on what was initially an interim basis.

Incredibly, Chelsea recovered to beat Liverpool in the FA Cup final and Bayern Munich in the Champions League final in the May and Di Matteo was awarded a two-year contract.

Three months into the next season, though, he returned to his old stomping ground, where his reign came to a juddering halt.


Di Matteo was ultimately sacked following a 3-0 Champions League loss to Juventus as Chelsea became the first European Cup holders to fail to get out of their group, but the writing was on the wall after a defeat away to West Brom three days earlier.

“After that game, goalscorers Shane (Long) and Peter (Odemwingie) were singing each other’s songs in the showers,” remembers Frost.

“Pat Murphy, in his report on the BBC, said someone heard Di Matteo saying, ‘You can’t even beat this lot’.”

West Brom’s matches against Chelsea are rarely short on drama.

In November 2013 at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho was saved from his first-ever home Premier League defeat by a controversial late penalty award. Ramires went down under in the box in stoppage time under a challenge from Steven Reid and Eden Hazard converted the penalty to salvage a 2-2 draw.

Albion’s players were furious and their protests continued into the tunnel.

Mourinho then branded them a “Mickey Mouse” side.

“There were loads of people involved, and there were 10 or 15 big bouncers in the tunnel so nobody could do anything — it was just people shouting this and that,” McAuley says.

“Jose is a winner and he would have been so disappointed with his team and the fact little West Brom went to Chelsea and almost took his unbeaten record.

“We were still complaining to the referee as we went down the tunnel and he was always going to defend his players. When you calm down afterwards, you can laugh and smile about it. But in the moment, when you’re part of it, everybody’s emotions are through the roof.

“Reidy didn’t make any move towards Ramires and I’m not sure anyone watching it back could claim it was a penalty. The big teams do seem to get that kind of penalty and they quite often get them at big moments.

“I thought we were good value for the win in that game and I don’t think Jose had lost a game at Stamford Bridge.

“It was the lead-up to the goal that was a real killer. They cleared a ball wide and Goran Popov sprinted as hard as he could to keep the ball in when it was going for our throw-in. He has a shot and they broke straight away and got the penalty and you’re thinking, ‘Oh my God, what has just happened?’

“I have seen pictures of me and big Jonas Olsson in the referee’s face, but I can’t remember a thing about it. It’s one of those moments where you’ve worked so hard in the game and it was pure red mist. That would have been massive for us. We were never going to win leagues, so to go to somewhere like Chelsea and inflict Jose’s first defeat is the kind of thing we played for.

“So then it all kicked off with some fun and games afterwards.”

Less than two years later, Mourinho’s men arrived at The Hawthorns as the newly-crowned Premier League champions.

Even with the title in the bag and West Brom safe from relegation, what should have been a happy, end-of-season affair could not avoid controversy as Cesc Fabregas picked up a bizarre red card just 29 minutes into what ended up as a heavy away defeat.

“There was the famous 3-0 when Fabregas pinged the ball against Brunty’s (Chris Brunt) head from about 40 yards away,” jokes McAuley.

“Only a technical player like him can half-volley a ball from 40 yards away and hit somebody in the head with it!

“I think it was just pure frustration because we’d started the game well. A free kick was given against us and he just picked the ball up and half-volleyed it. He’s got the quality to pick out Brunty’s head, but if I’m honest I’m not sure he meant it.

“Yes, we had some right ding-dongs with Chelsea in my time there!”

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