Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Bye bye 4 titles

Some have been discussing Chelsea's ability to win four titles this season: The Premiership (defending champs), Carling Cup (defending champs), FA Cup and Champions League. I have read on the BBC Sports and Fox Sports how no one would stop Chelsea...well what happened today?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/football/league_cup/4366994.stm

It is not as if Chelsea started their "B" team, well maybe they did, but their B team would do quite well in the premiership. They played many of their regulars, and brought in others during the course of the match. They played Cudacini rather than Cech, but still had Terry, Essien, Wright Phillips, Robben etc....not an experimental team! And they brought in Lampard, Drogba and Cole during the run of the game. Yet they were held by Charlton (can you name me the starting 11 for Charlton?) and ended up losing in PKs...which again shows why assertions by others that Chelsea could win 4 titles or that they are a shoe in for the Champions league finals are completely ridiculous.

Knock out competitions are always dangerous - Once we get to the knock out stage of the Champions League, anything can happen...score a goal on the away leg and then hunker down to protect that away goal, what Liverpool did to Chelsea last season....FA cup same thing, reason why there can be CocaCola league teams in the finals etc. And while Mourinho is a great manager he also has a massive ego and may at times allow himself to assume he can beat anyone by just showing up, the FA cup has shown that it will produce some monumental upsets: http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/1591567.stm .

Competitions such as the league play is much more about survival, finding ways to scratch out points, depth and talent. It is a long season and in the end the team that has the most depth and talent will usually survive and finish first or close to first. The other teams destined to fight for the scraps. For this Chelsea is perfectly suited. They have depth at every position and an owner willing to spend whatever it takes to add to this depth.

But all that talent means nothing when one mistake, or one bad stretch of 10 minutes in a 90 minute game can spell defeat...which is why Chelsea is far from repeating what Man U did in 1999 which is the Treble...since we now know the quadrupule title run is out of the picture...unless you count the charity shield........

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