Tuesday 22 August
Celtic are through to the draw for the group stages of the European Cup, and yes, we still call it the European Cup… the Champion’s League is a crap name for what was an honourable competition. The Bhoys made an interesting fist of an away trip to Kazakhstan to play Astana with a five-goal cushion, falling 4-1 behind in the second leg before two late goals stopped Chris Sutton, back in the studio, having a heart attack.
Joining them in the hat for the group stages are Olympiakos, NK Maribor, Napoli and Sevilla.
Wednesday 23 August
Liverpool joined Celtic in the European cup draw winning an entertaining tie against Hoffenheim 6-3 on aggregate. The Scousers are joined CSKA Moscow, NK Qarabag, Sporting and Apoel Nicosia in tomorrow’s draw.
Wayne Rooney called it a day on England. He retires after half a hundred weight of caps and a few tap-ins and penalties against minnows.
Newcastle United, having a crap start to the season will not be in the draw for the league cup third round … made in Beijing at 4am… after losing at home to Nottingham Forest.
Thursday 24 August
Uefa went for the usual razzle-dazzle in presenting the draw for the group stages of the Champions League: We popped up in group C and it was a delight to draw Atletico – of course, Diego will be so pleased – AS Roma and the worst trip and trickiest opponents in Qarabag, which we thought was something Glaswegians now need to pay 5p for at the shops.
In contrast and in Beijing at 4am and in a virtual media black out the Carabao cup was drawn; we are at home to Nottingham Forest. Burton Albion pulled the plum and will travel to Old Trafford. Arsenal have their usual easy draw with Doncaster Rovers the visitors. What the organisers got from holding the draw in China in the middle of the night with no television coverage is anybody’s guess.
In the England squad for next week’s matches against Malta and Slovakia is one Nathanial Chalobah. We thought selling him to Watford was a bit premature but it is one in the eye for all those who keep bleating on about John Terry being the only professional footballer Chelsea’s pathetic academy has managed to produce in the last 35-years.
Friday 25 August
Chelsea U23 0:3 Everton U23
The disappointing result shouldn’t detract from the 75- minutes rehabilitation Eden Hazard managed. Back in training with the first team this week, Eden grew into the match and started setting up his young colleagues toward the end of the first-half. In the second with the visitors now two up he managed a few more jinking runs and brought a couple of saves from the visiting ’keeper.
Ethan Ampadu has been called up to the full Wales squad for the qualifiers with Austria and Moldova. Ethan joined us in the summer and, at only 16, has made a few U23 appearances so far this season, including tonight’s.
Saturday 26 August
Norwich City U18 0:4 Chelsea U18
This was a better result than last year when we still scored four but lost to the Canaries 5-4. George McEachran scored a peach of an opener before second-half strikes from Charlie Brown, Conor Gallagher and Martell Taylor-Crossdale wrapped up the win.
It was a great afternoon for Tammy Abraham as he scored his first Premier League goal and Swansea walked off with a 0-2 win at already struggling Palace.
Sunday 27 August
Chelsea 2:0 Everton
This was every bit as easy as the scoreline suggests, Everton looked a bit off the pace after three matches in a week and we capitalised.
Cesc Fabregas flicked on in off the outside of his right boot following good determination from Morata and the Spanish striker made it two with a determined header just before the break.
That the scoring stayed at two was probably down to the draining heat and tiring legs. Willian pressed us forwards all afternoon and has really taken his responsibilities and professionalism to new heights in Hazard’s absence.
Spurs are on their way to Wembley, part II
Spurts thought they’d finally shaken the Wembley hoodoo by beating Burnley only for former-Leeds striker Chris Wood to pop up in injury time and score a leveller for 1-1.