© Photo by (unknown).
Come the start of August this year, if you had predicted that Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho would be facing the prospect of a P45 after just ten games of the new Premier League season, you’d probably be popped into a strait jacket and sectioned quicker than you can say ‘that Diego Costa isn’t a nice bloke is he?’
But the much-maligned Blues boss has seen his third season in the Stamford Bridge hot seat spiral madly out of control, one inept Chelsea performance at a time. With the Portuguese not one to do things in half-measures, his brash nature on and off the pitch has also seen him pick up a nice side order of FA sanctions to go along with the dross that’s been served up in West London in recent times.
Fans and pundits alike are scratching their heads as to how a team, who looked so comfortable in pursuit of their third Premier League title one season, can look about as potent as seven-day-old Ready Break the next. After Tuesday’s Capital One Cup defeat to Stoke, Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea career is on a knife edge. But just what has gone wrong under the special one’s helm this year?
‘Lacklustre’, ‘sluggish’ and ‘laboured’ are just a few of the superlatives used to describe Chelsea’s football so far this season. A combination of a belated start to their pre-season campaign as well as a roster of players who now look as though they’ve been requested to tow a P & O Ferry around the field with them has meant we now have a Chelsea side that has looked physically incapable of beating the teams they so easily breezed past last year. The pace of the Premier League is only getting quicker but what is alarmingly evident from their performances this season is the likes of John Terry, Gary Cahill, Branislav Ivanovic, Cesc Fabregas et al are all getting left behind.
No Longer a Defensive Unit
The warning signs of Chelsea’s defensive vulnerabilities can be traced back to New Year’s Day of this year as a plucky Harry Kane led Tottenham Hotspur to a 5-3 victory at White Hart Lane.
A back four who’d once been lauded as one of the best, if not the best in Europe, were found wanting against a dynamic Spurs attack and despite still going on to win the Premier League title with relative ease, it was from this point onwards that the cracks began to show.
Fast forward just ten months and an unsuccessful pursuit of Everton centre back John Stones in the summer transfer window and things are at breaking point. With just 10 games gone, Jose Mourinho’s men have already shipped 19 goals, an average of nearly two every game and more than half the amount of total goals conceded in the entirety of last season.
C is for Controversy
We were barely one game into the new Premier League season and the ‘Special One’ had already landed himself in the proverbial muck after an outburst at club physio Eva Carneiro following her ‘incorrect decision’ to enter the field of play during Chelsea’s opening home match-up against Swansea.
The controversy surrounding Carneiro and Mourinho’s decision to axe her from the Chelsea team bench on match days created an unnecessary storm around Stamford Bridge and has done little to halt the club’s slide down the Premier League table.
The Blues will be looking to address this alarming slump as they play host to Liverpool Saturday in a game which, if reports from the media are lead to be believed, must be won if Jose Mourinho wishes to remain as manager of Chelsea football club.
Will the Blues finally get their season back on track against Liverpool this weekend? Have your say in the comments box below.