Tuesday 19 December
Chelsea U23 3:2 Manchester City U23
A great fight back from two down with a brace from Martell Taylor-Crossdale and a late winner from, the much improved, Harvey St Clair. St Clair’s effort was a screamer from outside the box and a fitting goal to nick the contest from City.
Wednesday 20 December
Chelsea 2:1 Bournemouth
A great night’s entertainment marred by a yellow card for Alvaro Morata that means he misses the early start at Goodison on Saturday. The evening started with another Harlem Globetrotters style performance as we flood forward and applauded Willian’s excellent early goal.
Bournemouth picked up their game in the second but rarely threatened and Ethan Ampadu looked measured and controlled in defence.
The Cherries didn’t threaten until they scored a late, late equaliser just but just as we were settling in expecting extra-time Morata blasted in a winner.
He immediately stuffed the ball up his jumper because his wife is pregnant. Referee, Lee Mason, will not be invited to the baby shower however as he produced a yellow card – for what is a mystery.
AFC Wimbledon are in trouble with the football league. They referred to Milton Keynes as simply MK in their programme and on the scoreboard during their match in September. The stuffed shirts at the EFL insist that AFC have insulted MK by not using their full name.
The regulation states that clubs should not: ” “unfairly criticise, disparage, belittle or discredit” another club. The breathtaking arrogant imbecility of this charge is scarcely believable – the shifty liars and chancers at Milton Keynes stole an entire football club from Wimbledon fans in one of the lowest, most corrupt episodes in English football history and yet AFC are being charged for not using a nickname to which Milton Keynes are not entitled. One we stopped using several years ago.
AFC Wimbledon will be found guilty by the usual independent mob of kangaroos.
Friday 22 December
The U21s are giving away home advantage to Portsmouth because their Checkatrade Trophy match clashes with our home league cup semi-final with Arsenal. Both matches will take place on Tuesday 9 January.
Saturday 23 December
Everton 0:0 Chelsea
You expect nerves going to Goodison Park because we have either slipped up there or clinched crucial victories… what you don’t expect is a stalemate.
Phil Jagielka cleared off the line twice in quick succession and Ashley Williams headed against his own bar as we pressed but nothing was quite working this afternoon and Sam Allardyce will set up the rest of Everton’s season to bore them into mid-table.
Callum Hudson-Odoi was rewarded for a good season with a seat on the bench.
Tuesday 26 December
Chelsea 2:0 Brighton and Hove Albion
Routine as routine gets as a dull first-half gave way to a solid professional finish. Morata scored another goal from an Azpilicueta cross, curled over the defence from an inside right position and Marcos Alonso headed in the second from a corner as we closed in on second place with United needing a last gasp equaliser against Burnley to avoid defeat.
Wednesday 27 December
News breaks today that George Weah, an FA Cup winner on loan at the Bridge in 2000, has won yesterday’s presidential election in Liberia with 61% of the vote. Obviously running a newsagent or a pub is out of fashion for ex-professionals but running a country is a somewhat bigger challenge. We hope the Coalition for Democratic Change that Weah leads can bring stability and an end to corruption in a once troubled land.
Saturday 30 December
Chelsea 5:0 Stoke City
This one started well and kept getting better as the usually resilient Stoke crumbled in the first few minutes when Antonio Rüdiger headed in, Danny Drinkwater volleyed in an outrageous strike for his first in blue. Pedro’s quick feet and change of direction made it three inside he first quarter of an hour and we rolled on in the second period as Willian slotted a penalty and Davide Zappacosta flashed in a brilliant fifth and became the first Italian to score for us in the league since Gianfranco Zola left.
The win means we finish another championship year in second place. Admittedly we are a few points behind Manchester City but we are still in the chase.