I see that AVB has almost given up the squatting pitch-side position these days. It was very prevalent early in his reign at Chelsea, especially when we were on the attack – hence the lack of said stance now I would imagine. He still does the dramatic spin with his head in his hands move I’ve noticed, but who is he trying to kid? Nothing exciting enough to warrant that reaction happens on the pitch with our team these days.
Supporters still seem split as far as the manager goes with some sticking by the “things will be OK once he gets his own players” mantra, others who believe that he is out of his depth and yet others who feel that it’s the players who are purposely letting the manager down. There are those that believe that our squad is now made up of players reaching the end of their careers, players of questionable quality and some terminally out of form – with only a couple of noticeable exceptions. On the more extreme end of opinion is Harry who firmly believes that AVB is playing unsuitable tactics, making dodgy substitutions and purposely trying to sabotage every aspect of the squad to eventually dislodge powerful players/staff – I should state quite categorically that this is not only an opinion I do not share, but actually think it’s totally bonkers. The only reason that I have listed it along with the other thoughts on our recent form is to demonstrate how confused the support is with what is going on at the moment and how perception is gradually getting more extreme as we get further into the season.
I was determined to make this a positive piece this week as I have been depressing myself reading back some of my latest missives. I have been told that I should be grateful that we are not in Liverpool or Arsenal’s position, but to be honest, that leaves me little comfort. Someone pointed out that we have now kept three clean sheets in a row – fat lot of use that is if you’re not scoring hardly any at the other end is it?
To be honest I am really struggling here – the best thing that can be said about my trip to Norwich was that we had dinner at Delia’s restaurant the night before the match and the food was, as you’d expect, delicious.
I can praise Luiz though – he played well and at least looked as if the game meant something to him and that he wanted to win – unlike his team mates. I am biased when it comes to this Brazilian though as it is evident to anyone that meets him that he is totally barmy – and I like that in a player. I like the fact that every now and then he gets a crazy rush of blood to the head and tries to re-enact that scene from Escape to Victory where Pele makes that mazy run the length of the pitch to score the last ditch winner. I like the fact that he has mental hair and that he uses the word “geezer” in every sentence. I like that his “unique” style upsets the football purists and I like the fact that if he keeps improving and putting in accomplished performances he will make Gary Neville eat those childish, spiteful words regarding a ten year old with a Playstation.
This weekend sees us once again rock up to the not so sophisticated West London club in a game which has bypassed mere grudge status. We all know the issues surrounding this game, although most of us have little knowledge of the actual facts, but suffice to say, everyone has an opinion. All I know is that as far as I am aware no one at any point has come forward to say that they actually heard John Terry make a racist comment. I also believe that until proven otherwise, he is innocent. Equally if, somehow, he is found guilty, then he will be punished. So until then, can’t we just get on with the football?
I want us to go there and teach them a footballing lesson – not because one of their players has accused our captain of racism – but because they are a horrible little club which suffers from the football equivalent of Napoleon Syndrome, which merely intensified when they suddenly acquired billionaire owners, but sadly did not dissipate when it became evident that those same said owners were not prepared to waste much of their wedge in the vain hope of making them actual contenders.
They need to be reminded of their position in the hierarchy of the beautiful game and hopefully, despite our current malaise, we will be the ones to jog their memories. Although I would forgo that to relegate them towards the end of the season. But enough of such thoughts – although that thought lifted my spirits then!
Lastly, but by no means least, may I take this opportunity to wish Bobby Tambling a speedy recovery – Bobby is of course a Chelsea legend in the true sense of the word and an absolute gentleman with a humility that some of today’s players would be wise to note. Get well soon and come on Chelsea!