A tournament we all felt was ours to win as the favorites and better side ended in disappointed as a lacklustre and unpassionate Chelsea fell 1-0 to a well-disciplined Corinthians squad. It’s what I expected from Corinthians, but nowhere near to what was expected from the Blues. A difficult and disappointing day for sure.
What We Learned :
1. Hazard continues his good run of form.
2. Fernando Torres as inconsistent as ever.
3. Benitez is not a fan of “Mazacar”.
4. Moses is not a starter.
5. Transfer window can’t come soon enough.
1. Hazard continues his good run of form : After very impressive performances against Sunderland and Monterrey, Eden Hazard was brilliant in the first half with great vision, lovely touches and movement which was good to see from our summer signing. It was far from a complete performance from Hazard, but as the 2nd half came – no Chelsea player was close to complete performance. However, he did have one of the better performances of the Chelsea players.
2. Fernando Torres as inconsistent as ever : Just a few days ago, we were saying that Torres was back, and Benitez had unlocked the striker’s true potential. Well, that all came to an end today as Torres showed his Chelsea form, by scoring 5 in 3 games and then missing a sitter and playing horribly. Torres was inconsistent and anonymous against organised and motivated opposition in Corinthians. Came into this game on a run of five goals in three matches against poor opposition, but it seems he has become a flat-track bully. His late miss capped off a lacklustre Chelsea performance from Torres and the squad.
3. Benitez is not a fan of “Mazascar” : Rafa Benitez played Victor Moses over Oscar, once again and it, for me, was a horrendous decision. He never deserved a start today, nor the 70 minutes he played. Had a decent shot saved from Cassio, but he faded out of the game before he could make any other impact. Once Oscar came on, Mata and Hazard began to click a bit better and felt more comfortable as they had another playmaker next to them, who they are accustomed to playing with. Benitez seems to prefer the work rate and physicallity of Moses over Oscar’s creativity, composure and powerful shot. I’m not a fan of this move by Benitez as it’s changing a working formula.
4. Moses is not a starter : As I said earlier, Moses didn’t deserve this start nor the 70 minute he played. His playing style can hold us back when we need a cutting pass in the final third. He just can’t supply those passes and it takes away from our good attacking play, at times. Although, his speed and pace are well appreciated and certainly come in handy – his style is not what’s needed from the start. I would suggest starting Marin or Oscar over him, in order to get the creativity going from the get-go and give us a quick start that ultimately, will help us succeed. He did have a well taken effort, saved brilliantly by Cassio. Moses is a fantastic player, but until he’s ripe and able to supply that match-defining pass, I do not believe it is his turn to start.
5. Transfer Window can’t come soon enough : As January begins to get closer and closer, Chelsea must act smart in this upcoming transfer window. We need to cover the striker, defensive and defensive midfield positions in the window and spend smartely. I would suggest Domenico Criscito (Zenit) as left-back, Falcao/Huntelaar/Lukaku (Atl. Madrid, Schalke, Chelsea – loanee to West Brom) as striker possibilities and De Rossi/Asier Illarramendi/João Moutinho (AS Roma, Real Sociedad, Porto) as holding midfield options. The lack of depth in those positions is heavily felt as injuries, contract issues and bans continue to be a reoccurrence and heavy burden on those players that play those positions. I expect Roman to supply Rafa Benitez a good sum of money and Benitez to look into quality or youth talent when he buys.
Other Points :
1. Mikel’s presence in midfield will be missed during his suspension.
2. Lampard’s time to go has come.
3. Where is Marko Marin?!