October 27, 2015

Chelsea in crisis

by Dan Bilicki In: Soccer

With Chelsea struggling out of the gates, some must have wondered if Jose Mourinho would be done at Stamford Bridge after the season if the Blues didn’t defend their title.

Now, I’m wondering if he’ll even last until Christmas.

The Special One’s side lost yet again, falling 2-1 at West Ham and sinking to 15th in the table.

To make matters worse, he was sent to the stands at halftime for trying to confront a ref after seeing Nemanja Matic sent off for collecting two yellows in the opening 45 minutes.

This coming off a midweek scoreless draw with Dynamo Kiev in Champions League, another result that I’m sure owner Roman Abramovich is not happy about.

Mourinho is running out of time to turn things around and you can beat that he’s not happy about how his team is playing either. In his third season of his return to Chelsea, it’s looking clear that he has lost the locker room. Whether or not he can get it back might be his biggest task to date.

And to think how different this game could’ve been had Mauro Zarate not denied Kurt Zouma on the goal line – literally. Zouma’s header was a centimetre away from crossing the line according to goal-line technology.

That could be the margin between Mourinho staying and leaving now.

PLAYER OF THE WEEK

It may have taken almost three months, but Harry Kane finally showed the same form that got him touted as the next great English striker last year.

Kane potted a hat trick against Bournemouth to raise his season total to four.

This is coming off a season that saw him pot 21 goals and earn him the young player of the year award.

With Spurs facing three London rivals in the next four weeks, they’ll need Kane to come up big or we could see them sink down the table a little.

AROUND THE LEAGUE

Congrats to Big Sam for picking up his first win in charge of Sunderland. Great timing too, as it was the Black Cats’ biannual win over Tyneside rival Newcastle … But seriously, do the Magpies ever get the best in this derby? … In Sunday’s other derby, basically nothing happened. Who would’ve thought that Sunderland-Newcastle would’ve been the better Sunday morning game than the battle of Manchester? Even Bills-Jaguars was more exciting … There was something special about watching the Ayew brothers swap shirts after both scoring in the Swansea-Aston Villa game. I’m sure that it’s neat to have a personalized kit from another side … The Tinkerman finally got his clean sheet, beating Crystal Palace 1-0. The reward for his players: “A big pizza.” That’s actually something I can get behind … Another week, another Jamie Vardy goal. Is he this season’s Kane? … Arsenal was on top of the table for a day after beating Everton on Saturday. Is this a sign of things to come? … We knew that Jurgen Klopp would be a big draw for Liverpool, but those are just the results he’s bringing so far. That’s three ties in a row for the Reds.

THE LAST WORD

You could sense that something was going to happen after Aston Villa’s loss to Swansea.

In fact, I had already started writing on Saturday about Tim Sherwood would likely be the next manager to go. It turned out I was more right than I expected, with the Midlands club sacking him on Sunday.

Sherwood should be remembered by Villa fans for their fantastic run to the FA Cup final, but even that didn’t pay off, losing at Wembley to Arsenal.

Villa has been winless since opening day, and has just four points on the season, sitting in last place.

Sherwood simply couldn’t get anything out of a team that is lacking in many areas. The Villans made some investments in the summer window after selling Christian Benteke and Fabian Delph, but it’s just not working out.

Whether the next manager will be able to cobble together something from this squad remains to be seen, but this could finally be the year that Villa doesn’t escape the drop.

It’s a shame, too, as it is one of very few clubs that has never been relegated from the Premier League.

Leave a Reply