In the News: This has been that dire that the Daily Fail have been reporting on what it is like to play FIFA again. Sigh. I’ve been on the Gallipoli peninsula. It was essentially a walking holiday, but under the leadership of a lunatic Red Scouser, a West Ham fan, a Fenerbahce nut and accompanied by several ex-soldiers and possibly the only United fan left in the world that doesn’t want to see Chequebook Pulis fall over again, this time down a gaping crevasse somewhere in Antarctica, I’ve been invariably too sh*tfaced and wasted on four hours sleep a night to care what it is going on in the newspapers. That said, the Spartak fan in our group was massively excited about the arrival of John Terry, but I’m hoping he held off on getting that shirt printed. And Djilobodji – remember him? Our saviour one dire transfer window not many moons ago that nobody had heard of? He’s been sacked by Sunderland after he went AWOL and arrived back at the club fat.
The Others: Vertonghen reminded us all that he’s one of the most vile sh*ts in the game by trying to gauge out Firminho’s eyeball. Probably weighed it up and deemed it a safer bet that punching those teeth and shattering his arm up to the elbow. It didn’t help his side, who failed. Shame. Watford somehow managed to lose despite Matic being sent off and De Gea flinging himself about like an epileptic salmon, I’m guessing when a simple foot through the ball would have done. Zaha is moaning about a lack of protection – let’s have him swap shirts with Eden for a day. Or show him a photo of Ramires’s shin scars. City swept aside Fulham, and Arsenal won their third game in a row, which is no fun at all. And Bournemouth are now only 30 points from safety. Actually, not only that, but they are closer to winning the league right now than the Goons, Sp*rs and Chequebook Pulis. Boom. Again.
Us: Sh*t starts to get real now, with a mass of fixtures on the horizon. Pedro Pony (apparently, in the mind of a five year old girl, the greatest compliment you can pay anyone is to say there are as awesome as a pony, and little Mia bestowed this honour on him at the Bournemouth game) got the nod over Willian for today, as did The Beard over Morata. This looked like a slap in the face, but for reasons that will become apparent turned out to be a good call. Kovacic started alongside Kante, and other than that it was as you would expect.
Them: I recognised Harry Arter. I’d heard of Junior Hoilett but if you gave me a grand I couldn’t point him out.
So obviously anything other than a crushing victory would be a bit embarrassing and having said that, being Chelsea, we would find a way to make a massive drama out of it. They were very excited after three minutes to get a corner. In fact at this point the away supporters were excited by everything. The Beard almost manufactured a chance on the break but it didn’t quite come off. He got his head on another a couple of minutes later, but couldn’t quite direct it. On 8 minutes George Michael pulled one back for him again, he but failed to get any control on it. He was looking extremely spritely despite being weighed down by all that facial hair.
It wasn’t all us though, they weren’t setting the world on fire, but they were at least giving it a go. They could have gone ahead at least once in the opening minutes. Don’t take any credit away from them for their endeavour at this stage, but don’t underestimate already the contribution of their man of the match either. Jonathan Moss. I’m just going to slate him throughout so let’s just name and shame him straight off. Slightly thinner this season, but no less sh*t at his job. A hugely fortunate goal for them after a quarter of an hour. Considering that Sol F*cking Bamba has the touch of a wrecking ball operated by Gazza after he’s been out on a binge. Poor Kepa was left rooted to the spot. But more terrifying than this lapse and surprise goal was the revelation when they ran over to the bench to celebrate, that Neil Warnock was wearing SHORTS. Some things you can never unsee.
Oh well, well over an hour to atone for this nonsense and within two minutes we had almost equalised twice. At least it had served to give us a kick up the a*se and it had woken the crowd up. We do love a bit of siege mentality at The Bridge. We’d have to actually get the ball in play though. For the away support were hiding it. And when it did emerge, the time-wasting that had been instantly implemented meant that most of the action revolved around some bloke in neon orange making a ridiculous faff of putting the ball down in his box and kicking it. Moss was joyfully awarding them free kicks every time they fell over, I had counted half a dozen from them that Mss had blissfully overlooked to the extent that half the shed was contemplating a pitch invasion to cock-punch him. He was even stopping play for fake leg injuries. They wouldn’t even give the ball back along sporting lines either after pretending to be injured. Either Harry Arter is a monumental f*ckmuppet or a cheating turd.
Well that deteriorated quickly. Cardiff had defaulted back to sh*t on a stick football. With a loud chorus of “Sheep shagging b*stards, we know what we are.” In the face of all this wankery we were persisting in looking for an equaliser. An attempt from The Beard went wide, another hit Kovacic on the back. On 23 Pedro Pony looked like he was going to bend it in but the ball carried on going wide, and three minutes later he almost put it on The Beard’s head but the ball drifted out onto the roof of the net. In the face of their adversity, Cardiff introduced a new ploy. If throwing yourself on the floor doesn’t get Moss’s attention, grab your face and scream until he stops play. Cunning.
But the chances were still accumulating and they had ceased to attempt to put up any kind of opposition. They were rightly punished for their cynicism by Eden, thanks to The Beard, was left in a position to run at a load of donkeys like the little genius that he is and slot in an equaliser. Hurrah. Back on track. Well Llion will be relieved because now he’s a shade further away from having to travel back to Cardiff with them gloating in his face. They were much deflated now. Harry Arter, who had swiftly become the most hated man in West London, had given up and sat down on the pitch with a sad puppy dog face. Things got worse for him and his leek munching chums shortly before half time when once again The Beard set Hazard up to score. My favourite bit of it? His detour to celebrate in front of them profusely. Lovable, cheeky little f*cker. We had turned it around and they were complaining about how long it was taking Kepa to kick the ball. Boom. Last play of the half? Kante half leaping for a header on goal with an absolutely petrified look on his face about what he was going to do when it arrived. Bless.
Here’s one for half time. Next time you read about big bad racist Chelsea in the press, and how mean and bigoted we all are, and how we laugh at the holocaust and minorities (like me) cower at the thought of showing our face, note that for the first time today I saw a girl wearing the hijab at a football match. In fetching blue I might add, as she chatted in the Shed End with strangers, appeared to have a great time and quite rightly no one gave a flying f*ck about her veil. You’ll never read about that in the papers.
Arter was not enjoying his day so much. He had had enough of being the pantomime villain and f*cked off before the restart. Unfortunately Jonathon Moss didn’t follow his example. It was a low key beginning. Kovacic was not at all comfortable and went off for Barkley within five minutes. For a big lolloping bellend Bamba was a thorn in our side. It’s the Fellaini effect. It’s not that he’s actually a good defender. It’s the fact that nobody wants to get too close to him less one of his massive, flailing inspector gadget limbs end your career. Thanks largely to his unconscious endeavours, there had been no real chances to speak of by the hour mark. Please Chelsea, get another goal before these hapless twats bang in an equaliser off of someone’s nutsack.
Pedro Pony was doing his best – another shot saved on 61, a minute later he was involved in sending the ball across the face of goal. But they had one effort scoot past the post too and Sarri changed it up with 25 minutes to go. On came Willian for PP. Cardiff, in the meantime, had descended into farce. One of them attempted to fly through the air and mount Luiz, fell on the floor and then moaned about wanting a free kick. “I hope you broke your collar bone you c*nt!” was one response from behind us.
They’d bought on some substitutes – Jizz Richards, Gary Madine, some other bloke I’ve never heard of. None of them made them look any less hapless. A motley element of their crew was kicking off by this point. Though it has to be said that the Cardiff fans made a bigger donation to our charity boxes outside than any away contingent I can remember. The Goons literally gave us £1.50. But their mood was not improved by a completely moronic foul on Willian in the box. Never in doubt who was going to take it, and finally on 80 minutes we went two goals clear and Eden claimed the match ball by making the penalty look easy.
Cue chants of Engerlund, Engerlund, Engerlund, 1-0 and You F*cked It Up, You’re Going Down With the Pikeys, and You’ve Had Your Day Out, Now F*ck Off Home. Oh. And a huge sigh of relief from Llion, who was about to do so in the same direction. Willian sealed it with one of his specials and then we were into running the clock down territory. They wanted a penalty when Paterson – which one of our number insists is spelt F-U-C-K-W-I-T tripped over Luiz lying prone on the floor and started crying about a penalty, and Kepa did have to palm one away, but the game was done. After a short intervention during which Moss had a lengthy chat with Warnock, presumably insisting he put those knees away, the points were ours.
So: Top of the league. Though I won’t go rushing to any newspapers because they will not tell you anything about us confounding expectations this season, they will all be beating another one out over the red Scouse. Yawn. Eden was given license to roam again, and ran the show. I don’t see Morata being left out as a particular slight on him today, I see using The Beard instead as a tactically astute decision when you look at their defence. He’s the better man at wrestling for the ball against meatheads, winning it in the air and chipping in in defence. It was a Drogbaesque performance from him today. Individually some great moments from the likes of Rudi, but our defence looks fragile. I don’t doubt that we can score against the likes of Klippity Klopp and his Nivea muppets or St. Pep’s angels, but if we can concede to Cardiff at home, we undoubtedly will against them. Possibly heavily. We’ve done all that could have been asked of us so far, but this is where we really get tested, with the onset of two more competitions and tougher fixtures.