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Chelsea – Why Does The Blip Continue? Can Man Utd Be Beaten?

Chelsea fans may know more than me about recent events at the club. However, one thing is for certain; Chelsea are faltering at at time when Man Utd are demonstrating all of the attributes needed to win a Premier League Title. The question is, what is going wrong at Stamford Bridge? Should we put Chelsea’s current form down to injuries? Changes in back-room staff? or lack of squad depth?

I intend to focus on the possible reasons for Chelsea’s ‘uncharacteristic’ form, as well as focusing on why Man Utd’s resilient and commanding style of play could land them a 12th Premier League Title.

Carlo Ancelotti appears frustrated at Chelsea's recent form, but insists all is OK at the London Club. Photo: BBC Sport.

The statistics make for very grim reading if you support Chelsea; four points from the last 15 available speaks volumes at a club that has become almost accustomed to quality and consistency on the field. Suffice to say that something has gone wrong.

We are all aware of Ray Wilkins’ shock departure from the club; made so strange considering the success the club has experienced in recent times. Wilkins had clearly formed a good relationship with Carlo Ancelotti, demonstrated by constant communication during games and the positive things that each has to say about the other. Yes, appearances can be deceiving, however in this case I believe all was as it seemed.

Ancelotti’s control over Wilkins dismissal may have been minimal, which could imply that he was not entirely happy about the decision. I refuse to believe that Chelsea’s form is not at all linked to this change in personnel. I envisage the senior squad players being particularly upset about such a change. I am sure you as a reader would agree that creating unrest amongst a group can only have debilitating effects.

Chelsea seem to lack squad depth. I of course recognise that the absence of some very key players has resulted in changes, but Chelsea teams of previous seasons have simply replaced quality with quality. Chelsea’s bench against Newcastle consisted of Van Aanholt, Bruma, McEachran and Kakuta; whilst they are quality young players you simply cannot rely on these players making an impact when it matters most. Compare this with Man Utd on Saturday and you see names like Giggs, Hernandez and Fletcher who can certainly have an impact.

Injuries to John Terry and Frank Lampard in particular have really hurt the Chelsea side. We all have our own opinions on John Terry, however I think his presence on the pitch gives the side an incredible boost; particularly in psychological terms. Similarly Lampard is  essentially the engine room of the side. He makes the side tick, moving the ball around quickly and effectively and pulling the strings by linking play together. Furhermore, Lampard’s record in front of goal has been outstanding. 22 league goals in 2009/10 is a magnificent return. Many forget that Lampard is very rarely injured; this is shown be the number of appearances he has made in recent seasons. I think his absence has perhaps proved most costly.

Berbatov demonstrated that it's not all about Wayne Rooney at Old Trafford. Picture: CNN.

Finally, Man Utd. What can we say? A resounding 7-1 win against Blackburn has opitimised what the club are all about. Just when a rival team begins to show the slightest signs of weakness Utd raise their game. The club remain unbeaten in 15 Premier League matches, which despite drawing 6 games away from home has seen them take a slender two point lead at the top of the league.

Dimitar Berbatov bagged five goals in the demolition of Blackburn, which showed United fans once again that he has got the quality in his locker, but whether he can maintain his goal-scoring form remains to be seen. It is nice to see that the Wayne Rooney sage has not completely clouded what has been a very successful period for Man Utd.

So what do you think will happen as the season continues? Can Chelsea get back to winning ways once their key players return? I imagine that even two or three months down the line will not provide use with a crystal clear indication of who will win the Premier League this season. Of course, we will be better equipped to make an educated guess, but I see the title as being a two horse race between the usual suspects. I would suggest that Man Utd’s unbeaten start to the season coupled with Chelsea’s wayward form will give them the psychological boost in what is a telling time in the Premier League season.


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  1. Rahim Sadiq

    29 November, 2010 at 21:18

    Not actually giving us any insight in this particular article. It will always going be a two horse race in the league as neither Arsenal or Liverpool are ever realistic contenders. This must be the 4th season on the trot that Arsenal have started strongly only to wither away half way through a season. Liverpool were the real challengers allegedly this season and they will and probably settle for fourth. Man city are woeful , battered fulham and then drew with Stoke all a bit hot and cold not exactly title winning form.

    Rooney saga being over is a massive boost for United and John Terry touched on it when he signed his new contract by declaring that this will galvanise united and that’s what it has done.

    1st United
    2nd Chelsea
    3rd Arsenal (at least 10 points behind united)
    4th Liverpool (they will show the most consistency over the season, don’t think City or Spurs will do that)

    Please feel free to affirm or oppose my predictions as the games all about opinions

  2. Minhaj 87

    30 November, 2010 at 01:40

    i cant see anyone stopping united now,, you can argue but i think united may run away with the title,, dont forget united JUST started to show a bit of form and it is the second half of the season when they usually excell,, and of course if Rooney can recapture the form from last season,, as well as having a squad that has so many fringe players capable of performing match winning and match changing performance such as macheda and hernandez UNITED may become unstoppable!!

  3. dannyholliday

    30 November, 2010 at 19:21

    I agree, I cannot see anyone stopping Utd now. They’ll be believing they can win it and with such a decent run unbeaten they are clearly less vulnerable that Chelsea.
    I don’t think Liverpool will get Fourth as I can see Spurs/Man City getting their before them. I could potentially see one of those two getting third as well.
    Rooney saga being over is a big boost, but I disagree with the whole nature of the incident itself; example of an agent getting his client more money, SIMPLE.

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