A day that had many ups and downs where Chelsea found themselves in deep trouble and down 1-0 before going up 2-1 and then to fall 3-2 in the last few minutes. Inconsistency throughout matches continues to be a concern and problem as Chelsea couldn’t even salvage a draw from a 2-1 lead in the 60th minute.
What We Learned :
1. Ramires-Lampard in the double pivot doesn’t work.
2. Chelsea’s problem is in midfield.
3. Terry’s return not as great as expected.
4. Torres and Ba should start together for once.
1. Ramires-Lampard in the double pivot doesn’t work :
Lampard – Wasted a glorious chance to open the scoring on 15 minutes as he blazed over from 12 yards but made amends 10 minutes into the second half, rocketing an effort from distance past Krul to equalise Gutierrez’s header. (Goal.com)
Ramires – Lucky to avoid a red card after crashing into Gutierrez two-footed, with Howard Webb only showing him a yellow. Was subdued in the heart of midfield as Sissoko completely overpowered him, a rare happening for the Brazilian. (Goal.com)
Lampard and Ramires were in Newcastle’s pocket for almost the whole match. Lampard went forward too often and left Ramires unable to cope with Cabaye and Sissoko. Ramires went forward ill advised and went forward with Lampard which was a recipe for disaster.
2. Chelsea’s problem is in midfield :
Selling Meireles and loaning Essien while Mikel is at AFCON prove poor decisions. With Romeu injured, Lampard and Ramires can’t play together – they fail. It won’t ever work and it’s proving a bad decision, but that’s the only thing we can manage. However, we could of bought Diame or Fellaini to help us cope with the lack of midfielding chemistry and talent. It’s our biggest problem, because we have the offensive players, but not the defensive players. The term holding midfielder has been washed away when Lampard-Ramires start. Mikel and Romeu were our best holding midfielders, because they know their role unlike Lampard and Ramires who go forward or sit back too often.
3. Terry’s return not as great as expected :
The Blues’ skipper returned to a Premier League line-up for the first time in nearly three months and was strong alongside the jittery Cahill. Cleared several crosses and denied Cisse with a great flick in the six-yard box. (Goal.com). Terry did have his great moments, but for the equalizing goal.. he was at fault (along with Ivanovic) for missing a challenge and making life harder on Gary Cahill who had to deal with 2 men running at Cech. John Terry is our leader and captain, but we didn’t ease him in and it’s proving costly.
4. Torres and Ba should start together for once :
Why not? This obviously isn’t working. They could play off of each other and instead of having Ba/Torres individually against 2 CBs, it could be both of them against 2 CBs and the wingers running at the left/right back. An experiment that could prove vital for our season. If it doesn’t work, nothing lost. If it does, we could even compete for 2nd or at least keep 3rd. Ba wasn’t great, but wasn’t bad. He made a pair of good runs before missing a header that saw him break his nose and out for the rest of the match. Torres struggled to get a sight of goal himself, but combined well with Mata for the second. Imagine them combining with each other and the midfielders. Could be great.
Other Points :
1. Is Benitez on his way out?
2. Azpilicueta over Ivanovic.
3. Title race out of our reach.