Player Ratings: Chelsea 1-1 Man Utd: Diego Costa snatches a point in injury time

February 7, 2016

“It was a fixture that neither side could, in reality, afford to lose. Manchester United headed to Chelsea knowing a win was necessary if they were to keep touch with the top four in the Premier League. For the Blues losing this match could go far in undoing all the good work that had see last season’s league champions pull away from the relegation zone.” Squawka


Smaller clubs toppling Premier League elite – we may have to get used to it

January 29, 2016

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“It may simply be that this season is a freak. Leicester have 47 points after 23 games; not since 2002-03 have the leaders had fewer than 50 points at this stage. If teams keep winning points at the same rate as they have up till now, they will end up with 78, the lowest tally to win the title since Manchester United did it with 75 in 1996-97 when they effectively had the league sown up by the beginning of May and drew three games on the run-in, still finishing seven clear of Newcastle United in second.” Guardian – Jonathan Wilson


Garth Crooks’ team of the week: Alli, Firmino, Payet

January 25, 2016

“Behind them, heavyweights Manchester City and Arsenal both slipped up in their pursuit, with Tottenham gaining ground on the duo with a 3-1 win over Crystal Palace. Manchester United are now five points shy of fourth spot following their home defeat by Southampton. But who were the outstanding performers? Here are my selections…” BBC


Even after José Mourinho’s exit Chelsea’s numbers are not looking good

January 21, 2016

The good news for Chelsea is that they are unbeaten since Guus Hiddink replaced José Mourinho as manager in December. The bad news is that 10 points from six league games is probably not a start that is going to close the gap on the top four – which stands at 14 points. The FA Cup remains a possibility but, unless Chelsea somehow win the Champions League, a change of manager alone will not have been enough to salvage the season.” Guardian – Jonathan Wilson


Chelsea – Accidents Will Happen

January 21, 2016

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“After such a successful 2014/15 when they won the Premier League and Capital One Cup, very few people would have expected Chelsea to fall off the rails so spectacularly this season. However, a combination of key players losing form and manager José Mourinho struggling to find a solution, not to mention the distasteful Eva Carneiro episode, led to a string of defeats and ultimately the departure of the ‘Special One’.” The Swiss Ramble


Tactical Analysis: Chelsea 3-3 Everton | Poor defensive structure and offside trap

January 21, 2016

“Chelsea and Everton met on Saturday at Stamford Bridge, both needing a win. Since Guus Hiddink replaced Jose Mourinho in December, Chelsea hadn’t lost a game, but had only picked up 1 win in 4. Everton, meanwhile, had also failed to win in that period, drawing with both Tottenham and City. Both Hiddink and Roberto Martinez wanted a win to placate fans and get their top four challenges back on track.” Outside of the Boot


FA Cup’s declining status to continue in modern Premier League world

January 13, 2016

“As the cliché goes, the third round of the FA Cup is the most romantic weekend of the season; but it’s some time since the cliché has been true. Instead, a new tradition has sprung up, that of bemoaning the FA Cup’s declining status. The first week of January is now when English football gets together and makes some half-baked suggestions about how to restore the competition’s relevance. It seems bizarre now that the FA Cup was until the late 1980s the premier competition of English football.” SI – Jonathan Wilson


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