Yeah, when he came i'd said in this thread that he would be at Real Madrid within 2-3 seasons. Looks like his wife fancies PSG though, but he's probably got another year at Chelsea before that.I agree, context is key with regards to Hazard's statement but Mourinho's is clear, no misinterpretation there.
I'm surprised though, the journos probably set a trap for him...
All in all, storm in a teacup. He'll line up for the Blues next season, no doubt.
Personally, I think it's an attempt to keep Casillas happy. He got sidelined in a very big way so playing CL is the only option for Ancelotti. The other guy, what's his name?, has been playing well IIRC.BTW does anyone know why Casillas only plays CL matches yet gets left out of the league? Is it so Ancelotti keeps two very good keepers happy and fresh? I can't believe its' due to Casillas performing better in CL matches. Anyone have any insight to this?
Yeah Mourinho made the change last season, Lopez came in when Casillas was injured and he made the position his own. Ancelotti has continued it.Personally, I think it's an attempt to keep Casillas happy. He got sidelined in a very big way so playing CL is the only option for Ancelotti. The other guy, what's his name?, has been playing well IIRC.
Sad thing is Chelsea's record against the big teams could be even better if Maureen wasn't so cautious. Played for a draw early in the season at Old Trafford against the worst Man U team for a long,long time and did the same at the Emirates. Chelsea were more than capable of winning both matches and wouldn't they just love to have those extra 4 pts now.Yup. Villa and West Ham at home for the title? Easy.
You'd say they've deserved it, just. Liverpool's incredible run and Chelsea's record against the big teams means any one of them would of been worthy imo.
Utterly terrible. Comparisons between Giggs and Guardiola seem even less compelling.Man U still very much rubbish.
We can always look back on the missed opportunities, both Chelsea and Liverpool will have all summer for that the dropped points against Newcastle, West Brom twice, West Ham, Villa, Palace, Sunderland, Norwich, Stoke etc.. those will be the ones!Sad thing is Chelsea's record against the big teams could be even better if Maureen wasn't so cautious. Played for a draw early in the season at Old Trafford against the worst Man U team for a long,long time and did the same at the Emirates. Chelsea were more than capable of winning both matches and wouldn't they just love to have those extra 4 pts now.
Hoping City finish it off, but the way the season has gone i'm fully expecting a surprise or two tomorrow.Hello boys, Man City or Liverpool for the Premiership? Sad for my Chelsea (that's why I chose not to watch any Chelsea match the last 2weeks) BUT Mourinho and company will do better next season with Hazard and Matic plus Azpilicueta and Oscar (perhaps) the face of the future (I can only hope...and if Chelsea don't win it next season I will call The One, ''Maureen'' myself! Just kidding.). Happy watching.
Congratulations City. With the games they had in hand they had it in their own hands for the majority of the season, but they still had to win the games.I'm for Man City at this point in time but it's been too long for Liverpool so I'm fine with them winning the premiership too. Man City is odds-on favourite!
Man City deserves it!Congratulations City. With the games they had in hand they had it in their own hands for the majority of the season, but they still had to win the games.
Suarez has been great, but he's not really done it in the big games. Dzeko has scored some really crucial goals and stepped in when Aguero went down and Negredo lost form. You could make a real case for Dzeko imo.Mourinho even picked Dzeko over Suarez, um-hmm.
Toure, yes but they could've not done it without Kompany.Suarez has been great, but he's not really done it in the big games. Dzeko has scored some really crucial goals and stepped in when Aguero went down and Negredo lost form. You could make a real case for Dzeko imo.
My vote would of gone to Toure personally.
Forget about them, Ramsey is the man! What a goal again yesterday. Hopefully he stays fit next season.Well, I guess it did slip, huh Gerrard?
Nice to see Wilshere and Diaby back. Wilshere looked pretty damn decent and the reaction Diaby got every time he got a touch was great.
Wonder if he'll start at the World Cup. For me it has to be Gerrard and Henderson for the first game, they've built up a great relationship. The first 11 is actually pretty strong imo. Like Lambert, Wilshere and Barkley off the bench too.Would love to see Ramsey healthy for the whole of next season.
Also expect Wilshere to step it up some.
Not really, no. Our problem was slowing things down too much and not getting into wide areas. Teams just put everyone behind the ball knowing we don't have a striker who can make things happen.Fena, do you think selling Mata was more of a hindrance to Chelsea in the end?
I agree. I'm no great Cole fan (Spurs supporter) but the decision not to take him is a very poor one in my opinion. Plenty of time for Shaw after the World Cup.Wonder if he'll start at the World Cup. For me it has to be Gerrard and Henderson for the first game, they've built up a great relationship. The first 11 is actually pretty strong imo. Like Lambert, Wilshere and Barkley off the bench too.
The bench is a bit thin in defence though, never really rated Smalling and Jones personally. Cole is such a good defender and it's a shame he's not going to see out games. Shaw has potential and i'm a big fan, but neither he nor Baines are particularly strong defensively. You can see the best wide players in the world tearing us apart from those areas.
Yeah it's a strange one. Azpilicueta has said part of his improvement this year is from training with Cole and the advice he gave. Shaw having a month or two with Cole to learn would of made him a better player.I agree. I'm no great Cole fan (Spurs supporter) but the decision not to take him is a very poor one in my opinion. Plenty of time for Shaw after the World Cup.
What you expect of him?
Our 3 strikers between them scored 19 all season. Our rivals had double that, Liverpool nearly triple with just 2 strikers.What you expect of him?
Well, Eto can do that, can't he?Our 3 strikers between them scored 19 all season. Our rivals had double that, Liverpool nearly triple with just 2 strikers.
We need more goals and someone who will scare defenders. Mourinho kept trying the "false 9" because that's basically what we were playing when we did have a striker on the pitch, defenders didn't need to worry about Torres, they just went after the attacking 3 behind him because they were the only threat. Having a big, physical striker that the centre backs have to keep an eye on will open up so many things. That's the plan!
AS Liverpool buckled this past fortnight, the scale of the surrender to sentiment and the Great Myth of Steven Gerrard became apparent.
Essentially the leader who went AWOL at the decisive hour, who could offer only blubbering sobs when his troops needed direction, who abandoned his post in the heat of battle, somehow emerged with a Purple Heart pinned to his tear-stained chest.
Even the Fourth Estate chose to raise the white flag to the fairy story of Stevie G when the Football Writers’ Association arrived at the absurd conclusion that here was the second-best performer in the Premier League over the past nine months.
Straight faces were maintained at their London hooley as they deemed Gerrard’s body of work superior to Eden Hazard and, quite preposterously, Yaya Toure, the peerless touchstone against whom every midfield portfolio must be measured.
Distil the difference between Manchester City and Liverpool down to its essence, investigate why the former lifted the title on Sunday as the latter wallowed in a river of misery, and it is impossible to walk away from a pair of damning conclusions.
Firstly, the team that the Kop, in its ravenous hunger for a new age of prosperity, chose to prematurely deem soldiers of destiny, cannot defend: Liverpool leaked 23 goals more than Chelsea, 12 more than City, seven more, even, than a hapless Manchester United.
Secondly, in terms of leadership and inspiration at critical junctures from its midfield talisman, the contribution of Toure – one which goes way beyond his stunning 20 league goals input – dwarfs that of Gerrard, renders it a nothing.
These two flaws fatally merged at Crystal Palace when Gerrard, deemed Europe’s pre-eminent controlling midfielder by his manager, became the very opposite, a vision of disorganised chaos, as the Eagles landed three killer blows.
This is not to say that Gerrard had a poor season, not at all. But to deem him among the brightest stars in the season’s constellation is simply a work of fiction, a sop to saccharine-induced nostalgia.
It says much for the Englishman’s genius for self-promotion that he would garner more first preference votes than the transcendent Ivorian in the Player of the Year poll conducted by those who scribble about the game on a daily basis.
Here is a triumph of mush over substance, the creation of the greatest fable since the days of Aesop.
Perhaps the writers, like Gerrard himself against Chelsea in what has emerged as the defining image of the season and a treasure trove for parody, had suffered a cataclysmic, collective and concussive slip that had scrambled their senses.
Liverpool fans tend to rewrite history when it comes to the player who did just about everything in his power to board the Chelsea express in 2004 (Google his quotes from that time) until thuggish threats to his family persuaded him to step back.
And in the process Gerrard has become half man, half folk-ballad.
Second-best in England this season? He wasn’t even remotely close to being second best at his own club.
In truth, he ranked somewhere between the fourth and eighth most valuable player at Liverpool.
Unquestionably adrift of Luis Suarez, Daniel Sturridge and Raheem Sterling, any honest internal poll would have him jostling with Jordan Henderson, Philippe Coutinho and Simon Mignolet for the minor placings in a thrilling year of rebirth.
Gerrard was not in the top 20 performers in England.
Of those who can loosely be termed midfielders, he trailed Toure, Hazard, David Silva, Willian, Fernandinho, Adam Lallana, Santi Cazorla and, perhaps, Henderson. Aaron Ramsey in his three months of fitness was a vividly more stellar figure.
Those who observed Gerrard’s comically inept display against Aston Villa at Anfield in January could only assume Brendan Rodgers had spent the evening socialising with the ghosts of Hunter S Thompson, Oliver Reed and George Best when he recently deemed Gerrard “the best in European football in a controlling role”.
Where was the control when he keeled over like a bullet-ridden Bambi against Chelsea?
If that was a cruel taunt from the heavens, there was no outside influence as Liverpool blew that three-goal lead at Palace last week.
A holding midfielder of substance – a Keane, a Vieira, – would have stood up in the face of such impertinence from the underclasses, would have stamped their authority on the south London turf and crushed any hint of a proletariat uprising.
Gerrard – all General MacArthur in his public utterances before the game – merely dissolved into the night.
The man who has shamelessly played to the Sky Sports lens these past few weeks was suddenly pushing the camera away, railing against the very intrusions he had not only invited, but demanded after each decisive Liverpool step forward.
It is true he enjoyed a memorable afternoon as City were downed, but would that helter-skelter contest have followed the same storyline had the immense Toure not been ambushed by injury in the early minutes?
If Rodgers in that earlier quote was referring to his skipper’s capacity to “control” the perceptions surrounding him then perhaps he had a point.
Gerrard is England’s captain and he is peerless at one aspect of the modern game: Feeding the Great Myth.
Whether it is through tears or fist-pumping rallying cries or the smitten, innocent-in-love badge kissing, he creates the illusion of being the ultimate team-player.
In truth, Gerrard is a credible rival to Cristiano Ronaldo and Zlatan Ibrahimovich for the title of most self-obsessed footballer of his generation.
Yet so many fall for the great delusion of Stevie G, the unbending one-club man.
Whether it is turning on the tear-taps or morphing into Russell Crowe after the victory over City when gathering his players in a post-match huddle for his mortifying Gladiator speech, his genius is to cultivate this image as Liverpool’s bastion.
He is the selfless hero, the fearless superintendent, the upholder of standards, the solid Scouser, the forever loyal Red, the man who will keep the darkness at bay.
The only problem is when the truth intrudes upon the narrative.
Like when night fell for Liverpool supporters on Sunday as City – despite being stripped of their world-class striker for most of the season – were crowned champions for the second time in three seasons.
Led by Toure, a midfield player from a different continent to Gerrard by birth; and a different planet when it comes to leadership and achievement.
Eto'o has actually been a nice addition for a season. He's showed glimpses of his former greatness with some trademark finishes and big goals. Those usually came in the big games and at home. We have struggled against the so called weaker teams and he's not really done it in those games.Well, Eto can do that, can't he?
Ha, you've found me out! Have to agree with parts of it though, in all seriousness. He is the darling of the media and is a bit overrated imo, he gets away with things no other player could. Can you imagine the noise people would be making if Terry had of given a speech to the team on the pitch after the game? He would of been crucified, probably rightly so as it's not the time or the place and it does scream of "look at me".If it weren't for the lack of Lampard mentions I'd be convinced Fena wrote this, scathing attack on stevie g.
Unfortunately it needs to happen. We have some serious talent at centre back in Kalas, Christensen, Zouma and Chalobah. Luiz in midfield is OK, but there are better and more natural players who know that position out there.What are Chelsea fans drinking? Get rid of Luiz??