Azpilicueta Has Won the Battle of Left Backs

César Azpilicueta is the best defensive fullback in the Premier League. At age 25 he is growing into the strongest one-on-one defenders in the world, and he isn’t even playing in his natural position. He was asked to deputize long-time Chelsea left back, Ashley Cole last season, and the Spaniard hasn’t looked back since. “Dave” as his teammates prefer to call him, fought off all attempts from Cole to win his spot back, simply because Azpilicueta looked the far better option. This season, he has a new competitor in Filipe Luís.
Read more »

West Ham v CHELSEA: Preview

Venue: Upton Park
Date: Wednesday, 4 March
Kick-off: 19:45 GMT

Right, celebrations of the Capital One Cup over because tonight it’s back to the business of the Premier League.
Man City failed to claw any points back, so it’s still 5 points between us at the top of the table and our game in hand takes us away from home to face West Ham. Yes, they’ve been well off form and yes, we’re on a bit of a high but let’s not kid ourselves here, they’ll want to raise their game against us just as much as Mourinho will want to maintain his own record against them.
They might not be as easy as Spurs were at the weekend though.
Read more »

CHELSEA v Spurs: Capital One Cup Final Preview


Venue: Wembley Stadium
Date: Sunday, 1 March
Kick-off: 16:00 GMT

This afternoon sees us at Wembley for the Capital One Cup – or League Cup for those of us who still use old money – in what we hope is our first final of the season.
Our opponents, that lot from North London, are more than confident it seems, after the 5-3 win over us New Year’s Day although to be fair to them, Harry Kane has given them plenty of reason to be buoyant this season. In fact, the only fly in their ointment if they’re looking for excuses, is their trip to Florence on Thursday.
The League Cup was the first trophy Mourinho won during his first stint as Chelsea manager and he’s taking this final no less seriously but we’ll have to show better form than we have recently if Mourinho is to add another League Cup to his trophy haul.

Read more »

CHELSEA v Burnley: Preview

Venue: Stamford Bridge
Date: Saturday, 21 February
Kick-off: 15:00 GMT

This afternoon’s game sees us back at home, playing host to a Burnley side who haven’t done too badly at all this season but then again, haven’t quite done quite enough either.
Chelsea, on the other hand, have shown they’re capable of the sort of football it’s a privilege to watch – mixed in with ugly battles they’ve just had to grind their way through. Whichever it’s been though, it’s left us 7 points clear of City at the top of the table, so we just need more of the same today, whatever form that takes.

Read more »

CHELSEA v Everton: Preview

Venue: Stamford Bridge
Date: Wednesday, 11 February
Kick-off: 19:45 GMT

Tonight’s game sees us at home to Everton, in a fixture we needed a late Frank Lampard goal to edge last season. We might have battered them at the start of this season but their defence has sorted itself sufficiently now to have gone 277 hours without conceding, so this won’t be the walkover that was.
The visitors have several returns from injury that’ll give them more spring in their step and we’ll have to put on a bit more of a show than we did in a narrow and lacklustre win against Villa at the weekend.

Read more »

Aston Villa v CHELSEA: Preview

Venue: Villa Park
Date: Saturday, 7 February
Kick-off: 15:00

After a decent draw against City last week that kept the five point gap at the top of the table, this afternoon’s game sees us travel to Villa Park for a game against what has been, up til today, a very poor Villa side this season.
There seemed little love lost between the manager’s last time out at Villa Park and certainly Paul Lambert will want to go all out for a win to mark his 100th Premier League game as Villa’s manager.
Jose Mourinho meanwhile, still seething over Diego Costa’s ban, will want to press on with the title race having settled for a point last week. Add to that, his apparent inability to get a win at Villa Park, the Chelsea boss will be looking to end that run today.

Read more »

CHELSEA v Man City: Talking to the Opposition

Ahead of this evening’s late game against City, The Chelsea Blog very politely answered a few questions for Blue Moon – and then got duly slated on the City forum for everything from being arrogant to not being cocky enough! As bad as their neighbours really.
Anyway, you can have a read of Her Boring-ness here.

(Obviously the questions were answered before the Liverpool game)

CHELSEA v Man City: Preview

Venue: Stamford Bridge
Date: Saturday, 31 January
Kick-off: 17:30 GMT

We could really have done without the length of our League Cup game midweek with a game against City today but then we could also have done without the media playing judge and jury to see through Costa’s ban as well.
Both happened though, so we’ll just have to get on with the job in hand now and I suspect for Jose Mourinho, particularly with Costa missing, the agenda will be to not lose.
We come into the game with a five point gap we’ve again managed to create thanks to City only clawing five points from their last four in the league although I’m not sure any of us will get too excited about that given the previous gap we let slip. The important point though, is that by the end of today, that gap could be as big as eight points or as little as two.
No pressure.

Read more »

CHELSEA v Bradford: FA Cup Preview

Venue: Stamford Bridge
Date: Saturday 24 January
Kick-off: 15:00 GMT

After Liverpool ran themselves ragged to get a draw out of us at Anfield in the League Cup midweek, today it’s the FA Cup and a home game against League One side Bradford.
Bradford beat Wigan, Arsenal and Aston Villa on their way to the 2013 League Cup final but it doesn’t sound as if Jose Mourinho would accept that sort of outcome today. Still, as we saw at Cambridge last night – anything can happen in the FA Cup!

Read more »

Swansea v CHELSEA: Preview

Venue: Liberty Stadium
Date: Saturday, 17 January
Kick-off: 15:00 GMT

Having won just one of our last five games away from home, we could probably do without another game away from Stamford Bridge but that’s exactly what we’ve got to look forward to with a game at the Liberty Stadium this afternoon.
We weren’t great in our last game against Newcastle either, particularly in the first half, so we’ll have to do better than that if the nerves are to be kept at bay. Of course we gave ourselves the smallest of margins again with the win and City unexpectedly dropping points against Everton. Ałthough with City playing Arsenal Sunday and a game against Liverpool coming up for us midweek, we’ll need our players to forget all about that and focus on their own game today if we’re to widen that margin.

Read more »