Chelsea continued their full frontal assault on this years title with another home win. This week over their lowly local Shepherd’s Bush rivals. Not for the first time this season, the slender margin of victory did not fairly represent the dominant performance of the Blues.
Although yet again, considering the majority of possession they enjoyed , Chelsea should really have polished off the opposition well before they actually did. There was certainly a feeling with 20 minutes to go that Jose was going to provide more fodder for the tabloids to jump on his sides so-called, “Lack of killer instinct”.
One observation would be that if Eden Hazard put on the after-burners a little more often during the first half of our games we may end up with more 2 goal leads than we currently do. Whether this is because he needs to pace himself for later in the match, I do not know, but it is noticeable that he slows the game down more times than feels necessary before we are in a “comfortable” position.
Harry’s band of expensive rejects, did put in a good shift but you could drive a fleet of London buses through the gap in quality between the two sides. QPR’s bench of Bobby Zamora, Nico Kranjcar, Grant Hill, Shawn Wright-Footed and Rio Ferdinand looked more like an audition for the Chelsea Pensioners, than any real option for when Plan B was inevitably required.
The man of the match award went to Oscar (Does anyone know his surname?) , for a moment of sheer Brazilian brilliance as he opened the scoring for the home side on 32 minutes. He met a pass from Fabregas first time deep in the QPR box, and using the outside of his right boot to curl the ball around the keeper, he scored from what looked like an impossible angle. He is certainly in the running for our player of the year so far award , as he combines his deft touch with improving defensive qualities as he matures physically.
Diego Costa was welcomed back into the side after 4 games absent through his well publicised hamstring issues. The team looks so much more balanced with his presence as he chases down defenders and provides the perfect foil for our attacking midfield. He didn’t really threaten the goal today which was disappointing for goal hungry Spaniard, but it was a big relief to see his name atop the team sheet again.
Also Filipe Luis deserves an honorable mention. The newest of Chelsea’s Brazilian bunch is showing he is quick to adapt to the Premiership pace. Stepping in due to César Azpilicueta’s suspension, he demonstrated today why Jose paid up to Athletico in the summer for his services. His distribution and poise , as well as his defensive qualities mean the battle for that position will be a healthy one.
Chelsea let QPR back in the game with 25 minutes to go when following a rare poor clearance from JT, Charlie Austin cleverly back heeled the ball past Courtois, after the ball came his way following some serious rub of the green in the penalty area.
Mourinho immediately responded by swapping Willian for Drogba, playing the Ivorian alongside Costa for the first time. Didier’s touch continues to improve as his new role of provider with quick short passes, contrasts to the trademark bulldozing in the box from his “previous” career.
From this point it was going to be a question of whether QPR could survive the Blue onslaught.
luckily it was the award of a 75th minute penalty, through Vargas’s unnecessary challenge on Eden Hazard that saved any blushes. Our Belgian wizard appeared to be running out of space in the box, before Vargas bundled him over with the type of naieve defending expected from a forward player. Rob Green had no chance as Hazard converted the spot kick in his usual look- one- way -and -go -the -other method.
The frontrunners continue to pile up the points and a draw in tomorrow’s Manchester Derby will do very nicely thank you very much.