Whilst everyone else seems to be working themselves into some sort of erotic group frenzy over the thought of Eden Hazard maybe, potentially, undeniably, possibly signing for Chelsea/City/United (delete as appropriate), if I’m honest, I’m more concerned about the ongoing manager(less) situation at Stamford Bridge.
Here we are, FA Cup holders and Champions of Europe, going about our business renewing contracts, letting players leave and even looking to bring players in, if you believe what you read, and all this is happening without the person charged with managing those resources actually in post to give an opinion. Of course, it just adds fuel to the press fire when it comes to reporting Chelsea managers are there in name only – and that sort of thing discredits us enough as it is – but what about potential managers, will they really fancy coming to a club where the major decisions have already been taken and their role is simply to ‘get on and win things’ with someone else’s choice of players? I’m not convinced.
Other potential candidates notwithstanding though, what about Roberto Di Matteo? It’s sheer embarrassment that a manager who has just won both the FA Cup and Champions League – a feat no other Chelsea manager has achieved – is not considered high profile enough to take the club forward. How much bloody higher than winning the Champions League with a squad that quite honestly wasn’t good enough to truly compete in the Premier League, can a manager’s profile realistically get?
I mean, the talk of a one-year contract is an insult to Di Matteo to be honest, there wouldn’t be one of us too stupid to suss what that’s all about and 12 months down the line, no matter what he’d achieved during the course of that time, we’d be back in this position again just waiting for Guardiola to decide he’d had a sufficient break. Can the club really not be a little more respectful to RDM than that?
Quite apart from anything else, whilst Di Matteo might not be considered to be the man for the job going forward, that in itself forces the question of exactly who it is Roman regards to have the credentials. I’ve already mentioned Guardiola but who’s to say he’s the right man? Given the resources available to him at Barcelona, it would have been harder to make a pigs ear of things than it was to be successful in all honesty – and even then, he couldn’t beat us last season. If the situation had been reversed, and it was Guardiola in charge of that Chelsea XI, would Barcelona still have gone out against us though? I’m saying not.
The thing that really concerns me about him is that he knew his tactics hadn’t worked against us in the first leg, he knew how we’d set ourselves out against them in the 2nd leg and yet he insisted he would not allow Barca to play any other way against us – and he paid the price for that. We had a manager for the first half of last season whose stubbornness and refusal to adapt style of play to fit in with resources available was to our detriment. That manager was duly sent packing when the incline out of the top four started to look a bit steep, so surely Roman would be prepared to do the same whoever the manager happened to be?
Right now, we have two men at the club who have just taken Chelsea – and not even the best Chelsea we’ve ever had – to the sort of heights some of us probably didn’t believe possible in our lifetimes and no-one seems convinced they’ll be with us next season. Shameful really.