Let’s get the important sh*t out of the way. Somehow I’ve been nominated for an award. Who’d have thunk it? Anyway: any and all votes appreciated at:
My category is “best new blog.” Let’s try and paint the ceremony blue too. You’ve got the lovely Llion Carbis up in best young blogger and Breathe Chelsea up for content creator. Or alternatively you can tweet the following to cast your vote:
I am voting in @TheFBAs for @CFCgwlb in the #FBANewBlog category #FBAs
If you could then threaten/cajole anyone you have power over, namely employees, offspring and spouses it would also be muchly appreciated. I do not frown upon people voting on behalf of their pets either. Voting ends tomorrow, 7th May, I believe.
Swansea 0 Chelsea 1: So after just four minutes we were ahead when Cesc scored his 50th goal in the Premier League. This is rare sh*t. Only two Spaniards have done that. Torres and Costa. So rare that one of those isn’t even a Spaniard. At that point, so Janice reports, because I was sunning myself somewhere west of San Antonio, everyone in the away end thought we’d get more and smash them. But nope, because this is us, and round about the 70-minute mark is when everyone in the Chelsea end started crapping themselves, the team took the foot off the gas, and Swansea started coming at us like they were Brazil in 1970. Still, we got it done. Jon Moss in refereeing shocker. Is that even news? Missed attempted murder on Cahill, doesn’t know what constitutes a free kick. Has possibly since f*cked up Southampton’s chances of staying up with his ineptitude.
In the News: Alex Ferguson is poorly in hospital. I just can’t comprehend that such a giant figure in our footballing world would be carried off by something like this. He needs to go out twenty years from now in a bare-knuckle bout with a giant liver bird, wearing Braveheart face paint and hurling every obscenity in the book. Disbelief seems to be the general response. This isn’t the end. It can’t be. And we all hope he’ll be back and trying to look entertained watching Chequebook Pulis try to defend a 1-0 deficit shortly. In the meantime, if the Press Plebs could stop eulogising him like he has already passed away it would probably be appropriately considerate for his family.
Hughes came out whining after the FA Cup semi-final about penalties etc. I’m not taking this moron seriously when he could basically get two teams relegated in one season. Because Stoke are down. I think I can honestly say nobody is going to miss them, as they’ve been a whopping great red and white barnacle on the hull of the good ship Premier League for most of their decade with us. And Rodgers may have squandered his chances of managing us. Apparently. By not giving Musonda enough time on the pitch during his loan spell at Celtic. Sorry Charley, but this is what you call taking one for the team. Speaking of Scottish football, nobody is allowed to mock my piss take about Eddie Howe being a Chelsea manager now that Rangers have employed the forehead less wonder as their new boss. True, he could boast amongst his accolades robbing Buck-toothed Brendan of one league title already (chuckle) but he can claim little else by way of qualifications.
Half and half scarves on sale. At a youth cup game. Jesus wept. Then curled up in a ball and started rocking in the corner. On a slow news day, we also got a ridiculous insight into David Luiz’s fancy dress birthday party. Poor Mrs Terry. It probably didn’t occur to her to ring round and check with Pesto (yawn, autospell)that their outfits weren’t going to clash. First Wenger says he was given the boot. Then eight hours later the club tells everyone that he didn’t mean it. Then there was also a piece about him saying that his departure was down to certain Arsenal fans, I wonder who, “wrecking their identity.” No Arsene. It was no secret that your mob were sanctimonious bellends.
We just get to see it on YouTube on demand now. He’s getting out just in time. No wonder he looked so relax today. He needn’t worry about his successor making him look stupid. When the Red Swarm were pontificating about it being Enrique they were saying that he was to get… wait for it… FIFTY MILLION to spend. Pip Squeakiola wipes his a*se with £50m. If that was all CP found in his transfer kitty he’d throw a Yaya, birthday cake style wobbly. £50m for a new regime to spend. On a team that’s won nothing significant in 15 years and relies on Pothead Wilshere. Good luck with that. Who knows they might get lucky. Nainggolan apparently wants to play for a team that can’t win anything and make life difficult for himself. A perfect match I hear you say. Yes, so long as he is willing to take half the money he could get playing somewhere else. And Klippity Klopp in bizarre nonsense statement alert. (Must be a day that ends in a y) Says the Red Scouse will wait for Oxlade-Chamberlain to recover from injury like a good wife waiting for her man to come out of prison. I could make so many jokes about soap on a rope, and their conjugal visits in a beat up caravan. But it’s just too easy.
The Others: Wenger signed off at the Emirates after more than 20 years in charge of L’Arse today wearing his best cardigan. Just in time, so far as his legacy is concerned. His team sent him on his way by thrashing Burnley, and left me bemused that they couldn’t have played like this over the last two seasons. The fans actually turned up today, and they all had t-shirts that said “Merci Arsene” which I suppose was nicer than the ones being handed out by Arsenal TV, which said “Thank God, Now F*ck Off.” Ashley Young admits that United weren’t at the races against Brighton. Mate, never mind being at the racecourse. You were propping up a William Hill counter somewhere at 9am smelling of pee, drinking White Lightning and waiting to see if your 10p each way bet came in. And does a game of football get any better? That lot beaten in injury time. By a dubious goal. The closest Harry f*cking Kane came to scoring was in the wrong net apparently. Janice (muppet alias) was quick to quip that it was a shame because he could have tried to claim that towards the golden boot too. Last I heard he was allegedly trying to claim adding another to his tally by going home and scoring with his missus. Which led me to think (uncomfortably) about what the pillow talk might consist of afterwards. I’m willing to bet he just gabbles on like a telly tubby. Or one of the flowerpot men. And dribbles all over said pillow. Now that I’ve put that image in your head on to our game. When we could close the gap on all that slobber to a mere two points if we gave a side who always richly deserve a good kicking a right good seeing to.
Us: Neil Barnett got some of the afternoon off in favour of an American bloke who is supposed to be famous but that I’ve never heard of when the teams were announced. Dear Chelsea. Never, ever do that again. So far as the line up for them game, Conte got it spot on today, though Willian will feel hard done by at not finding a place.
Them: Who is this Egyptian bloke? Never heard of him.
There ain’t nothing like a sunny spring day for getting you in the mood to have a go at this lot. After 57 seconds we’d launched into a chorus of “sign on” followed by a loud reminder about Steven Gerrard falling on his a*se. At this point, we hadn’t touched the ball, but we were amused anyway. Thibaut was forced to make a save early on and then finally, three and a half minutes in, we got a thrown in. Huzzah. I can laugh and joke about them having all of the ball, because they were doing their headless chicken thing. For all of the possession the ball was just going from side to side, and they’d only set foot in our box once. In a true statement of the totally obvious – the first goal was going to be massive to the outcome of this game. Whoever goes behind has to open up and leave themselves vulnerable to try and get back in it. When two teams are this good on the counter attack, that vulnerability can be crushing.
Eight minutes we made it most of the way into their half. Things were looking up, before Refwatch kicked in. Anthony Taylor. Joy. Doesn’t even book Milner for attempting to kill Hazard. Here we go. Precisely another 200 seconds of his clueless faffing and he was already getting on my tits. On 13 minutes the best chance of the game so far fell to us, but Bakayoko and The Beard got in each other’s way, no need to tell you who got the blame. However, moments later the younger Frenchman annihilated Clyne and set up Alonso for a shot that unfortunately went straight into Brigitte Nielsen’s arms in the Liverpool goal.
They were away shortly afterwards, Mane surging forward, but Kante got a standing ovation from the crowd for a perfect tackle that stopped him in his tracks. There’s an argument for letting these muppets just run themselves stupid to no avail, and it was borne out by our having the better chances at taking the lead. Anything they were having in the way of attempts, we were forcing them to take from questionable range; and providing Courtois stayed alert, and that we could keep our concentration at the back, they were going to start running out of ideas. Our desire was better than I have seen for much of the season too, with some nice, brutal tackles going in when we lost the ball.
I’m just going to start referring to him as Bakaloco, because he was like a f*cking steam train today. Choo Chooo. A header from the much-maligned midfielder came close after half an hour, before he started off the move that sent us into the lead with a brilliant cross out to Moses, who duped the defender by putting the ball into the box with his left foot. The Beard rose like a meticulously groomed, furry salmon to nod it to past Brigitte Nielsen and send the home crowd wild. And then oddly ran all the way into the bench to specifically cuddle David Luiz. I’m sure Antonio loved that.
Just don’t f*ck this up before halftime Chelsea. But in fact little chance of that emerged. Klippity Klopp’s Plan A, when they are up against anyone good, is to run at the opposition and try to score loads, and hope that they are ahead when the final whistle goes.
There appears to be no Plan B.
We were tearing them a new one at this point with some really crisp passing around the edge of the box, they’ve got almost no clue when it comes to taking the ball through the middle, and are always looking for a route out wide. Cesc had a ton of space. It was as if he was invisible to them. Literally no Red Scouse within twenty yards of him, Robertson going up to try and cover, meaning that Moses was then left to roam the right-hand side. Like tits in a trance, discipline wise, were they in the run up to half time.
Point proven on 35 minutes when Cesc made not a blistering run, because this is Cesc, but a nicely accelerated jog into the box and almost nailed a second on a narrow angle. He had it past Brigette Nielsen but it was just wide. I was ready to decapitate Taylor when he blew his whistle on 38 minutes on the edge of our box, but then bizarrely he gave a free kick against some little Egyptian bloke and booked him for diving when we were expecting him to shaft us. Not only that, but he then booked Clyne for a foul on Alonso. We’d made it to halftime in one piece, and in that far corner of The Shed the smuggery had been somewhat silenced.
They came out like they were running from the law in the second half. But we were not about to be caught short. For what seemed like 5 hilarious minutes at the time, we enjoyed Hazard mocking them by refusing to give up the ball, resulting in a near attempt for us. They’d actually half ripped his shirt off. Some more exquisite passing led to another effort, but Kante’s shot is still sitting on the roof of the shopping centre. Taylor made a pigs ear out of his job again. And Conte got told off for pointing this out after a shoddy foul went unpunished. Which prompted this exchange where we were:
“Who did that?”
“Robertson. The one that’s furthest away from the crime now over there.”
“They teach this manoeuvre to everyone in the land of Scouse.”
We almost doubled our lead on 55 minutes after a narrow cross, before a Rudiger goal was chalked off moments later as offside. Clyne went off before he got sent off, and on came Henderson with his creepy face that looks like it’s been moulded out of play-doh. A tame shot on the hour was spilled by Brigitte Nielsen, but there was nobody on hand to pounce on it, before Moses ran almost the entire length of the pitch (whilst being fouled) and got nothing from Taylor, who no doubt was having a code piped into his ear to invoke Operation Benefit Cheque – that point in every game when they face adversity and cards and free kicks start inexplicably being given in the Red Scouse’s favour to try and help them over the line.
That Egyptian bloke went down easy in the box on 65. They were crying for a penalty, except him, because he was already on a yellow and he knew better. Rudiger sent an attempt over the bar, whilst we all amused ourselves with singing Your Support is F*cking Sh*t and another round of Slippy G bashing just for giggles. One of them was taking his clothes off and waving them at us. Perhaps he intended to return them to their rightful owner.
On 71 Bakaloco dug the ball out from a dicey situation and set Hazard away, but the final cross that came back into him from The Beard was off in height. Look who it is with fifteen minutes to go. Solanke, who went to Liverpool for more money in wages than he had ever earned and because he thought everyone would see how awesome he was. Klippity Klopp now had four up front and the game had started opening up. We were so deep at this point that it was actually terrifying. Chelsea players booked for time-wasting. Oh the comic irony. All at the behest of “Hendo” wailing like a spoiled brat at the referee. Alonso responded to his yellow with what was almost goal of the season, a stunning volley from a narrow-angle that flew just wide across the face of goal. Does anyone in the league volley better than George Michael?
They came close to an equaliser on 83 when everyone bricked it for fifteen of the longest seconds of our lives until Courtois had got both hands firmly around the ball. Willian was ready to come on, if the ball ever went out of play. I barely noticed because I was ranting too hard about how Milner had managed to evade a card for the entire duration of this game. Their best chance to score probably came from Solanke, who rewarded the trust put in him with a sh*t header. He did not get a good reception today. We got Zappacosta tfor Victor, who had run his legs off and made the most hilariously slow exit I think I’ve seen since the days of Bosingwa and his monobrow. Cesc too was wasted after a massive effort and was replaced by Pesto for the final few minutes. By the time we reached four minutes of injury time Van Dijk had gone up too, so that the Scouse were playing with five up top. Ah, so that’s Plan B. It was not going to be their day. Beating them is fun, but there is nothing better than beating them when they are bleating on about some perceived injustice when they have had so much given to them by officials over the years that has been criminal.
So: We have provided you with a blueprint for how to beat the cretins, Real. Use it wisely. And spare us all.
Not one of our players had a bad game today. Every one of them showed up. Kante was exemplary. (Not when he was shooting) When you’re my height and you win everything in the air, you deserve praise. Bakaloco was a monster today, and had what might just have been his best game so far in a Chelsea shirt. All three at the back were disciplined and bailed us out on separate occasions. Rudiger was the best of them. He absolutely destroyed that Egyptian bloke, so much so that he went and told Rudi so as soon as the final whistle went. Our centre back mowed down everyone this afternoon like a rhino who’s spent a night doing bucket sized jagerbombs laced with ketamine. Firminho was basically invisible with Mane the only one that really saw any of the ball in terms of going forward convincingly. Hazard got the standing ovation he deserved when he was subbed, because he was unplayable for much of today. Alexander-Arnold got completely schooled by him. Courtois was nigh on faultless at the back, Clyne could not get near Alonso all afternoon and Cesc used every inch of space they stupidly gave him to put in a great performance. And Conte deserves much credit too. This was much more like the bloke we fell in love with last season. I just wish he’d been around more this season.
It’s easier to be running down a team ahead with two games to go than it is to hold your nerve. Especially when that team trying to do that is Sp*rs. Who excel at collapsing like a child’s step ladder under the weight of Sam Allardyce at any given opportunity. Dare to dream, yes, that we may sucker punch them down into the Europa League and make them cry, rendering that smug once in a generation win at the Bridge totally useless. But don’t lose track of the two victories we need to be in with a chance of doing it. We are not in the top four with two games to go because we p*ssed it up the wall in games we should have won. That we get to cause them some angst and possibly turf them or even the Scouse out of the Champions League spots is a massive bonus with which to entertain ourselves on the run in. But we have no chance if we don’t win, and though I like to think we are in a much better place lately, based on our showings this season we could quite easily roll over for Huddersfield midweek if we don’t stay focused.