Chelsea’s “Season horribilis” ended today, when Everton knocked us out of the FA Cup. Today’s 2 -0 loss to the Toffees also saw the return of Chelsea’s ill discipline and generally error stricken play that has defined and plagued our season.
Whether it was Mourinho’s grumpy bullying of all and sundry (Players, Press, Medical staff and I’m sure his missus), or Diego Costa’s ability to hand too much out but then not being capable of taking it , or Hazard’s apparent “could careless attitude”, Chelsea have bought most of this disappointment upon themselves.
It has been very painful to watch as our club imploded. There is definitely a sense of deja-vu. We managed to blow any chance of celebrating our famous Champions League campaign of 4 years ago, due to the off pitch shennanigans of JT and Mikel (The Clattenburg incident).
This time around it’s Jose that should take the brunt of the blame. he destroyed a dressing room of Champions, leaving us with a bunch of disenchanted misfits, lacking in team spirit and confidence. Unfortunately as I have mentioned in earlier dispatches, there is too much water “under The Bridge” for the current squad to be rehabilitated. Time for Roman to place a fresh face at the helm and let the new manager take a broad brush to the canvas.
The only person I feel sorry for is John Terry. Never thought I’d find myself saying that. He will be bowing out in the worst season of the Abramovich era. A damp fanfare to say the least. We all know that JT has not helped himself over his career with some very poor “off pitch” decision-making, but when it comes to his contribution in transitioning Chelsea from an average side to Champions of Europe, he is on par with Roman’s efforts. He is the “Most influential Chelsea player” of all time.
Ironically this is also why he cannot be offered a new playing contract. He is far too powerful in the dressing room and on the pitch to be able to play part-time second fiddle to whomever is chosen to lead us in to future glory. Clean slate required. He should understand that. If he chooses to join the coaching staff, giving up on a shed load of money in China or the States, then we should offer him a lifetime contract.
So now we can look forward. The biggest change should be made by the Board. Our brand has taken a hammering this year. We need to start to think like a big club. At the moment we are still the biggest club in London and if we had played our cards right and made the most of Man United travails, we may have become the biggest club in England if we’d retained the League or won the Champions League again. Not to be I’m afraid , in fact we are miles away from there, Man City’s hiring of Pep and Tottenham’s likelihood of winning the Premmy are big lines in the sand for us. Time for change.
Here’s a tip for our upstairs management. We need to stop being hated. The Mourinho -Costa style antics must stop. JT’s departure is one less reason for us to be booed by opposing fans, we should take this opportunity to clean up our act. Roman wants beautiful football, lets start with a beautiful football club. If we want to gain market share on the global football stage, attracting the hoards of fans from emerging soccer markets like Asia and North America, away from Barcelona, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and soon Man City, we have work to do.
Let’s start by engaging the press properly. Certainly Gus Hiddink deserves credit in this regard. The footballing equivalent of Red Adair, he has at least bought some semblance of respect back from the journos.
We should also try to sign players who are also renowned for their good sportsmanship. I look around our squad and we are distinctly lacking in that department. Think about Barca, they have a squad full of them. Even Man City have the likes of Kompany, Silver, Aguero, Hart, Yaya, not to mention a manager that has never intentionally offended anyone. When Lamps and Drogba left , they took most of our good sportsmanship with them.
So who should stay and who should go…. I’m thinking primarily of who can fit our new soon to be created brand. Also which players are damaged goods following Mourinho’s mistreatment, or just not good enough to survive the purge.
Stayers….. Courtois, Azpilicueta, Cahill , Willian, Matic, Zouma, Kennedy
Go’ers…….. JT, Ivanovic, Mikel, Hazard, Costa, Remy, Cesc, Pedro, Falcao, Baba.
As we can see , the class of 2016 , has more leavers than stayers.
Who would I like us to sign? It will cost Roman a fortune, especially as we have no Champions league football to offer , but how about: Pogba, Lewandowski and Stones for starters. Also maybe a strange one, but I think that Scott Dann from Palace would be strong addition to the dressing room (potential Captain) and the back 4.
We should certainly give our youth a run out for the rest of the season to see if anyone stakes real claim to a shirt next year.
Anyway, I already feel better now that it’s finally over and can enjoy watching Leicester and Spurs battle it out, hopefully! Anyone but Arsenal please.
The only good news is that this season is that Man United appear to be in even more turmoil than us. Lets learn from their mishandling of transition and realize the modern game is about attacking attractive football at all costs, and taking the risks associated in achieving that.