Yes, I know, actually only Manchester United won 3-1 against Chelsea at Old Trafford. However, Chelsea may not have won on the scoreboard but won in multiple other areas.
Andre Villas-Boas has probably now worked out his best system, something that Chelsea didn’t really know going into the United game. 4-2-3-1 surely must now be AVB’s preferred formation, having performed admirably in a second half of immediate success followed by an entourage of untaken chances that could have led to a Chelsea result, had luck and refereeing decisions gone their way. Frank Lampard, Didier Drogba and Rual Meireles are the unlucky sufferers, with both players likely not fall from the starting eleven which would include Mikel and Ramires in the holding positions with Juan Mata playing behind Fernando Torres and supported by Nicolas Anelka and Daniel Sturridge or Florent Malouda. Lampard looks like he may be coming to the end of his dominance in the Chelsea midfield, being anonymous in the Chelsea midfield and leaving Chris Smalling completely free to nod in the opening goal.
Not only did Chelsea learn their best formation, they also learnt the Fernando Torres may be returning to his former self. If he hadn’t been unlucky enough to miss they way he did, which now needs no explanation, everyone would be saying that he has returned to his Liverpool form. We’ll see in the coming games against Fulham and Swansea, providing he plays, whether or not that statement can be justified. Torres was the best player in the Chelsea offense, creating all of the numerous major chances, and could easily of had a hat-trick. He also finally scored, which has gone slightly unnoticed in news articles and blogs, overshadowed by the mother of all misses. Surely that’s something Chelsea can take out of the game.
So Chelsea do win some more confidence, knowledge and experience from that game on Sunday. Will it be used in season’s too come by Villas-Boas, or does he need to be a success story this season for this game to not be wasted?
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