Posts Tagged ‘Drogba’
It’s 24 hours since the final whistle blew at Stamford Bridge, and I am still absolutely buzzing about the result. Winning 1-0 there was absolutely beyond even my wildest dreams. I don’t think I found a single United blogger predicting that we would win. Most of us seemed to go for 1-1, and the rest seemed to settle for a good 2-1 defeat with an away goal.
That we did it AND got to enjoy the Chelsea fans being totally shafted by the referee in the last minute makes it all the sweeter. How does it feel boys, how the fuck does it feel?
Of course, it would be folly to get carried away with things. I can’t see Chelsea going the whole tie without scoring, which means that we’ll have to get another at Old Trafford. I had visions of Nani clipping that 1 on 1 over Cech as he raced through, and at 2-0 it would have been a completely different proposition, but Chelsea still need to score twice to win. They’re not going to want penalties. They’re still shit scared of them.
Still, when we look back on this performance we will remember it for one thing above all else – Michael Carrick’s emergence from the shadow cast by the boo-boys. Absolutely immense defensively, expansive, probing, and an absolutely perfect pass to Giggs in the build up to Rooney’s goal. If Michael Carrick isn’t the first name on the team-sheet in the run-in, then it better best be Nemanja Vidic.
I hope the irony of blaming the referee for the result is not lost on the Chelsea fans. They get the rub of the green match after match, year after year, and when they finally get one decision go against them, they all start bitching and moaning about how much of a disgrace it is. Well, sorry guys, welcome to our world. Besides, the foul was outside the box, even if no referee in the world is ever going to give a free kick in that situation. Penalties every time, as we saw against West Ham at the weekend.
Even without that, Chelsea didn’t really threaten beyond periods of extended pressure. their one flurry of post and two goal-line blocks just before half time, and the wonder save Edwin made from Fernando Torres.
Fernando Torres. The boy looks completely, utterly destroyed by the way his Chelsea career has started. Absolutely lost. The fans are on his back, he’s not sure that he has the support of his players or his manager, and he can’t even begin to see where his next goal is coming from. Since he last scored he’s hit the post, had goals disallowed, had shots cleared off the line, and seen Edwin claw out a header which, to be fair, was basically perfect. He must feel like going home every night, curling up into a little ball and dying.
His tepid performance made the decision to remove Drogba all the more puzzling. He was causing us all sorts of problems, and I was delighted to see the back of him.
Anyway, so what, he’s not our problem. Up front, we don’t have a problem. Wayne Rooney is once again firing on all cylinders, and looks almost back to his devastating best from last season. Dimitar Berbatov oozes class every time he comes on to the field and Javier Hernandez, even if he does struggle to make an impact in the more physical games, could score a goal at absolutely any moment.
Antonio Valencia doesn’t look like he’s been away. Likewise Park and, with Anderson scoring twice for the reserves this weekend, we have pretty much our full compliment of midfielders available. Just Fletcher out with his mystery virus.
This all bodes so, so well for the end of the season. Still, if we’re even going to start breating the t-word, we have to follow this up with a win at the weekend. However ecstatic I am with this result, I will be more pissed off than that if we drop points. With our fixtures, we simply cannot.
Our form is fantastic, though. I’m sure we won’t. Fingers crossed.
It’s not snowing anymore, and that means that, this time, the rentboys have nowhere to run or hide. Manchester United are heading to the bridge tonight, and I think that we’re going to do them.
I wasn’t this confident before the Arsenal game we won 1-0, or any of the City / Liverpool games we’ve played this season. I tend to err on the side of caution, expecting us to draw most of these big games.
Not so this time out, against an out-of-sorts Chelsea team who lately have been behaving like even bigger tossers than usual. Not content with signing the greatest ladyboy ever to play football for far too much, and pissing off their main man in the process, they have continued to play shit and plunged new depths of behaviour.
Carlo Ancelotti is clinging on to the reigns, no more in control than a cowboy over a rodeo bull, as the players run rough-shod over his rule, like the self-centered and entitled arsewipes that they are. In scenes so incredibly ludicrous I at first thought they were biting satire, Ashley Cole actually shot a work experience student with an air rifle this week. That’s right. Ashley Cole shot someone.
Of course, you’d never know, because Wayne Rooney also ebowed someone on a football pitch within the past few days. This, clearly, is a far bigger crime than shooting someone (and attempting to hide the incident from the police and hospitals…) and worthy of all the column inches it has been given.
A crime that you or I would get jailed for is simply swept under the carpet. Just like that. No wonder the rentboys behave like dicks. They’re positively encouraged to by their management. Remember John Terry’s “charity” tours?
Anyway, the game. Torres is going to fancy his chances of once again bending over Vidic and fucking him sideways. I don’t think he’ll have the same joy he’s previously had, however. Vida is on an imperious run of form, and with the fresh and confident Chris Smalling alongside him, I think they will have enough between them to snuff him out.
Anelka is the one I’m worried about. He seems to be doing well and, if anything, Torres’ arrival has given him more space from which to profit. I don’t expect him to be afforded this space tonight.
Fergie has been playing Gibson lately, which to me gives the biggest indication that he’s not intending to play him tonight. I have also been nonchalantly saying that the defence picks itself then seeing O’Shea preferred to Rafael. I’m not John’s biggest fan, but he’s done well recently and can now be classed as “experienced”. I see no reason that he won’t start again. That leaves Vidic, Smalling and Evra elsewhere.
We’re almost certainly going here in a 4-5-1, with Scholes, Carrick and Fletcher playing. That leaves Nani on the right and, whilst we’ve still got injuries and Giggs is doubtful, Rooney on the left with Berba up front.
The only other option available would be to bring Gibson in for Fletcher, or put Nani on the left, Fletcher on the right and play 4-4-2, but since when did we play 4-4-2 in the big away games? I’ve probably also called the right-back position wrong again, but there we go.
I expect Chelsea to set up as they have been of late, stringing five across the midfield, albeit with one of those being Anelka playing in a very advanced role. The Drog won’t start, because with the shit he’s been talking this week Ancelotti surely won’t e able to bow to player power, because that would send the message that he’s completely lost his team.
Although John Terry and David Luiz are yet to settle as a center-back pairing, the same could be said of Vidic and Smalling, so this isn’t particularly an advantage we have. Ashley Cole, tosser that he is, is also a very good left back who will do his best to silence Nani. Because of this, the way that Ivanovic handles Rooney, and the performance of Berba (should he get service) will be absolutely key to deciding this game.
I can’t see us losing. Perhaps another draw. I doubt it will be goal-less though. With Chelsea’s season in disarray, this is all that’s left for them to play for unless they can avoid Barcelona in the Champions League. They’re going to be up for it. They’re goint to come after our blood.
Five Cantonas Prediction
We’re going to suck up everything they throw at us early, hit them on the break, and come out 3-1 winners. I’m THAT confident.