What We Learned: Aston Villa


2 wins in 2 games for Jose Mourinho in his second stint at Chelsea. A good start results wise, a poor start performance wise. Mourinho will be hoping that the performances will come as the season goes on and the teams gels in, as do many Chelsea fans. Aston Villa was the challenge in the 2nd match, the same Aston Villa who beat Arsenal 3-1 at the Emirates in the opening weekend. Aston Villa seem to be the next surprise team along with Southampton and Norwich and their play shows why they could sneak into the top 10 after relegation fears last season. It was a slender 2-1 win for us, not the prettiest or best result, but I’ll take it.





League Table:


What We Learned:

  1. Ruthlessness missing
  2. Lukaku has to start
  3. Juan Mata out of form
  4. Time for Ba to go?

1. Ruthlessness missing: Mourinho wants the team to be more ruthless, as his comments suggest. We need to get off to a good start and then destroy our opponents as the match goes on.  Mourinho believes it would be difficult for any team to live with his side at the intensity with which they began the season and hopes the Blues can produce the same performance, but for longer.

“If we do that, we destroy an opponent,” Mourinho said.

“Playing that way you have to score goals, even if the opposing goalkeeper saves a penalty.

“We want to win matches, but what I like is that when you have the chance to destroy to beat them by three, four, or five, we have to do it.

“If someone has the chance to do it to you, they will not forgive you, they will give you nothing.

“If someone feels that they can do it to us they will do it – when you are in trouble, they smash you – so if we have the chance to do it, we have to do it. That is football.”

And he’s right. To be champions and to be successful, you have to never let go, never let the foot off the pedal. Examples of this are Mourinho’s first Chelsea, Carlo’s Chelsea and Heynckes’ Bayern Munich. You simply have to press your opponents and take your chances. If you aren’t clinical, you won’t get far in football. Just look at Liverpool and Spurs – good sides with good football, but they don’t take their chances. We must step up the clinical part of our game and keep our foot on the pedal if we want to lift trophies this season. We didn’t do it vs Hull City or Aston Villa when we were presented the opportunity, which gave each opponent the opportunity to get back into the match.

2. Lukaku has to start: While Torres was pretty good against Hull City:

Often peripheral and hasn’t quite tuned into the same wavelength as the rest of Chelsea’s attackers. Won the penalty Lampard missed, and the free kick he scored, but didn’t have a single shot on target and never looked like scoring. (Goal.com). While I will agree that Torres was anonymous, I will also argue that the service was never there as the match progressed. Torres’ movement and passing was brilliant in the first half when we dominated the match. In the second half, we allowed Hull City back into the game and took the foot off the pedal, Torres suffered as a result. The movements and runs decreased as the service decreased, his hungry start was perhaps overshadowed by the lack of service and therefore anonymous performance in the second half.  His link-up play could be the main reason he starts this season should we not get Rooney. His passing and movement as I said was very good today, especially in the first half. Let’s see if he can keep it up. (What We Learned Hull City)

Demba Ba was poor today, caught offside way too many times. Unimpressive display from the striker. Constantly caught offside in the first half as he tried to take advantage of Villa’s high defensive line, while his touch was a little heavy. Subbed after 64 minutes. (Goal.com). His poor performance and Torres’ lack of goals opens the door for Romelu Lukaku who created a few chances in both matches as a substitute and seems the most logical option to start. Torres is 2nd due to his link-up play and Ba is last because he just isn’t cutting it.

3. Juan Mata out of form: Our Spanish magician battled injury in the past week or so and wasn’t himself in the Confederations Cup with Spain (maybe because of Spain’s style of play). He has been our best player for the past 2 years and without him, our team isn’t the same. We didn’t see him against Hull City (due to lack of fitness) and he started against Villa and frankly, wasn’t himself. I’m aware he still isn’t fully fit, but for a player of his quality, his lack of form could hurt us. ‘Form is temporary, class is permanent’ – a true mantra/saying, but we’ve seen players go out of form then takes years to come back (Torres) or some take days/weeks. Let’s hope the latter is the case with Juan. Following a busy summer and a restricted pre-season, the Spanish wizard began brightly but fizzled out. Looked heavier of touch and slower of leg and brain than usual. Subbed after 64 minutes. (Goal.com). He is still our best and most influential player and last season without him, we were lost. Let’s hope this season, KDB/Hazard/Oscar will be able to stop that trend and at least lead us to victory when he’s not playing or in form.

4. Time for Ba to go?: As I said, Ba was horrible against Villa and after his sub-par preseason and our hunt for Rooney and two additional strikers (should Rooney not sign), I think Demba Ba could be facing the axe or deemed as surplus to the requirements. He simply hasn’t been as good as he was at Newcastle, not even a shadow of his Newcastle self, he’s been a complete ghost for Chelsea ever since signing. Some argue he needs time just like Torres and maybe he could prove himself in some time, but we simply don’t have the time to wait around for him to get back to his old-self. We did that with Torres and it handicapped our possibilities, hopefully, Demba Ba can turn it around quick for Jose and Chelsea, but I simply don’t see it happening anytime soon which gives me the impression that he could be gone in January or next summer.

Other Points:

  1. Another 90 for Lampard, will he be a regular or will he be limited?
  2. Ramires on a good run of form
  3. Luiz and Azpilicueta obviously missing links in defense

Thanks for reading this match’s edition of What We Learned. Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comment section below or contact me on Twitter. 

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  1. Anonymous says

    Poor Tactics from Mourinho!

    1. Anonymous says

      Poor Tactics in what?? When you have nothing to say, you must shut up

      1. Krak says

        Young man, u dont go about telling other people to shut up, just because u have access to the internet doesnt give u a right to insult your elders ( because he just might be older than you). Beside, every body is entitle to his/her openion. And lets not be to obssess with mr. mou because he cant always be right and constructive criticism is right to throw at him for the good of our team (which I put ahead of mou and his s**t).

      2. Sotiris Georgiou says

        KRAK shut up where was the constructive criticism? where was Mou s**t? he gave good reasons for picking the team. We played with more width than we have in the past like we did under him with Robben and Duff the style and some personel has changed what do you all expect instant hammerings of the opposition? I would rather of done what we did against Villa than what Arsenal did and Hull parked a bus as they say. If you want to point fingers point them at the clubs bosses ie Gourley etc who thought it would be a bright idea to have pre season on 2 different time zones and then expect players to be in full swing. Not of course forgetting how many times differences there is in the US alone. Anybody with half a brain would of chosen one and added a couple of European Friendlies just like the two Mancs did but no lets get greedy and screw the team.

  2. Blue blood says

    we should sign BENTEKE PLEASE

    1. Anonymous says

      Lukaku is better than benteke

      1. Anonymous says

        They’re both big, strong… and BLACKKKKKKK

  3. Jeff says

    disappointing but i would still say they need time to blend

  4. Ken says

    I thought mou said lamps won’t be starting all matches..he seems to be talking from both sides of his mouth..that defence was shaky.. Here’s my perfect bckline dave,luiz,iva, cole…if don’t use it this way, we’re going to struggle…mourinho seems to be confused with his selections…

    1. Sotiris Georgiou says

      You can name any defence you want but Luiz is still not fit and Dave as you call him had stepped off a plane from Paraguay on Friday just like Carzola and he was great Saturda why do muppets post without taking into account the facts Mour selected the best defence available too him and he went for experience with Lamps 2 games in and that’s Mour lying? give me strength.

      1. EKVR says

        I never said they weren’t ready pal. I just said our best defense would include them. Obviously, I know they aren’t available which is why I didn’t say they should have started. Moron.

      2. Sotiris Georgiou says

        EKVR then why say he is confused by his selections? take a break.

        1. EKVR says

          I didn’t say he was confused by his selections? Don’t put words into my mouth.

  5. Shingie Samu says

    True we’re poor in the final third, Ba has no work rate at all, just stand in an offside position and disturb the run off play. Foot of the pedle is a major problem in as many of our seasons, remember last season Soton get an equlaiser when we did the same. We need a sharp strike, just look at Banteke one clear chence and a goal it was.

    1. Sotiris Georgiou says

      SHINGIE I suppose that sharp strike is coming from Torres? Benteke has just signed and committed to Villa not an option we are looking at strikers. The amount of time i have read on various idiot CFC sights we don’t need strikers we have Torres i despair and suddenly its lets all blame Mou er after 2 wins or should that be 8 in 9 including friendlies patience people.

  6. ShawnS'tha says

    mata struggled coz he was playing out of his normal position not coz he is out of form.

    1. Anonymous says

      You are wrong: Mata switched with Oscar most of time and play number 10. He was not Mata. He was absent all the match. Poor and didn’t help the team.

  7. Krak says

    Nice write up. But I think mata was not at his best due to the fact that mr. mou played him out of his favourite position where he is by far undeniably better than oscar, no disrespect to the little brazilian, he is class and a master in the act of midfield but I will still pick the sparnard over him for the no,10 spot.

    1. Sotiris Georgiou says

      KRAK As somebody said they interchanged Mata was not solely on the right. The guy has just completed 2 years of just football what do you expect? and he was injured. Oscar is what 4 or 5 years younger again what do you expect? The whole point of interchanging is to stop becoming predictable and easy to defend against even Mata struggled to break teams down last season.

  8. Benjamin says

    The second half display was much better. Good short passes rather than wasting opportunities with long passes that Ba could not even get 1 right. The attack was faster in the second half. Generally it was a poor game with all the weapons at our disposal. Mourinho got it wrong tactically in the first half. We want to see more of the second half display but with more goals.

  9. Bob says

    Mata didn’t play well because of his position, he didn’t get many passes from where he was. He’s not built to play there. Mata > Oscar by miles. Oscar did play a nice pass to Hazard but Mata and Hazard together are beasts.

  10. hull city tiger says

    @admin,after reading your “what we have learned reports from the games against hull and villa i have come to the conclusion that you are totally clueless.i have a question for you!,do you actually attend games or as i suspect are you sitting from an armchair?.there are so many pounts i could make but i will just mention a couple.firstly regarding chelseas defensive qualities that you appear to think are lacking.firstly makelel was world class and can not be replaced.but in jm’s sides everybody has a defensive job to do,from the lone striker to the wide men to the central midfielders.my next point is that van the man and oscar will never make deep lying midfielders as you put it.one of the most ridiculous statements ive ever heard.as for ruthlessness,we are only two games in,you cant steamroller sides week after week,that is not jm’s way,its a marathon not a sprint.and as for mata being out of form as you put it,its his first full game back!,give the man a break for fucks sake.oh and by the way theres no such team as hull city tigers,yours truly a life long supporter for 43 years man and boy.

    1. Sotiris Georgiou says

      Spot on Tiger

    2. EKVR says

      They rebranded as Hull City Tigers this month 🙂

    3. EKVR says

      And nobody was saying it was time to hit the panic button, but only a muppet would say this start hasn’t been worrying.

      1. hull city tiger says

        Whats worrying?,two games 6 points !,you can not make any assumptions on two games you idiot,do you attend games?,you failed to answer my question ?.if you are going to run sites liks this and post them on gate 17,then at least make sure your statements have some sort of credability.and while your at it post me up a league table that reads hull city tigers !

        1. EKVR says

          I watch every game twice before writing these. I rewind, pause and play as much as I want to bring this to you. Also, https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&cd=4&cad=rja&ved=0CD8QFjAD&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.bbc.co.uk%2Fsport%2F0%2Ffootball%2F23629379&ei=6agWUuqpG-K02gX15oDYAQ&usg=AFQjCNE7A3eHjWD3Q4vo3IZMbjGkbb0t6A&bvm=bv.51156542,d.b2I. Oh and find me a league table that reads Chelsea Football Club.

      2. hull city tiger says

        I cant comment on your last statement,it wont allow me,i wonder why?,let me let you into a little secret.you will not ever ever get a proper prospectos of a football game by watching on the tv.fact!,as i thought an armchair warrior.

        1. EKVR says


      3. hull city tiger says


      4. Sotiris Georgiou says

        Another die hard then EKVR? maybe you should all change your names to Bruce Wilis….as i said before the performances are tired looking but the blame is not Jose’s in fact it show’s what a great coach he is by managing even this and winning.

        1. EKVR says

          We played Hull City and Villa at home, we really should have a GD higher than 3 goals. Our reserve team is better than their A team.

      5. hull city tiger says

        If we had of gone out all guns blazing in the second half against hull city lions then we would of got beat or at best dropped a point against villa!.fact !

        1. EKVR says

          Prove it.

  11. hull city tiger says

    If we had of gone out all guns blazing in the second half against hull city lions then we would of got beat or at best dropped a point against villa!.fact !

    1. EKVR says

      Prove it.

  12. hull city tiger says

    Do you realise that side was told by jm to dlow it down and knock it around,it was so blatently obvious.and the reason for that is that he knew the vast majority of them would be playing wednesday.he does not change a side around for the sake of it,he picks a side to beat an opponent,if torres had scored a couple would not of made any difference.and the best you can come up with is ” prove it”,i thought you were the football expert here ?.

    1. EKVR says

      I am and I’m relying on facts not made up assumptions to back myself up. You said if we routed Hull, we wouldn’t have beaten Villa. What an assumption considering we almost dropped points even after “seeing the game out”. We deserved to draw Villa.

      1. hull city tiger says

        Lol you have plenty of bollocks i give you that,but why are you contradicting yourself.you just said villa deserved a draw,so imagine the last 15 mins with s chelsea side who had run themselves into the ground for 90 mins against hull city zebras !

        1. EKVR says

          I’m not contradicting myself. Villa DID deserve a draw, everybody with a righteous mind knows that and everybody with a righteous mind knows that this start could be A LOT better. We have enough squad depth to field 2 separate teams in 3-4 days.

  13. hull city tiger says

    It amazes me how somebody sitting on the other side of the world who has never been to the bridge in his life can have the audacity to preach about chelsea football club to somebody whk has been going for 38 years.you know next to nothing mate and to be honest i dont know why i am wasting my breath.as i said earlier it does not matter to jm about squad depth,he picks a team that he feels will be best suited to the opponent.an example of this was his post match comment that he played branna again on wednesday tk null the physical threat of bentake who plags predominately down the left channel.if it were another side then in all likelyhood ceaser would of started.these are the things you should be writing about,ie.jm’s tactical awareness not your pompous “what we have learned crap”.so i suggest you ditch the pause and rewind button,save up some money and actually come and watch the side play,perhaps you might learn something.and whats all this righteous crap?,its a football site your trying to display not skngs of praise.

    1. EKVR says

      I’ve been to the Bridge.. Was a ST holder for 2 1/2 years before moving.

  14. soumo says

    Mourinho played Mata out of position, on the right wing. and Mourinho’s 4-2-3-1 is not like Benitez or RDM’s. unlike the former managers, Mourinho’s formation is much more rigid, where MAZACAR do not swirl around behind the striker. hazard stays on the left, oscar in the middle, and mata on the right, where he is much less effective.

  15. Anonymous says

    Hazard-Mata-KDB should be our first choice. I know Oscar was great and all, but Schurrle-Oscar-Moses must be our back up!

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