After the inconvenience of the Internationals we can finally get back to club action, it did seem a bad idea to have a break after just three games but that is another story.
We will be looking to collect our next three points as we find ourselves up against a very average Sunderland side this Saturday. The long trip up to the North East will only be made worthwhile if Chelsea come away from the SOL with maximum points.
We have been unconvincing in our first three games, let us hope the ‘shake down’ of the summer transfer window will now galvanise the squad into an efficient unit needed to make a difficult challenge this term for the title.
United are historically poor starters (but strong finishers) to the annual race have hit the ground running and are playing some excellent footballs as are their city rivals let by Roberto Mancini. It didn’t take a genius to realise prior to the seasons start that these two would be our main threats and I dare say will continue to be throughout this campaign.
Both clubs have extremely strong squads and will take some holding by Chelsea. The fact that City have once again spent heavily this summer, I believe, has spurred United on to make the start they have. Neither team will want to lose ground on their illustrious neighbour and will go into every game with only one thing in mind … all three points! This is why I think this it is going to be a very difficult season for Chelsea to win the title back, but as we all know football has a tendency to throw up many anomalies. Key player injuries, fixture congestion, bad refereeing decisions, pure luck all plays a part of the game we love so much.
We are already two points behind our main rivals which is not good when you consider our easy start programme or at least as it looked on paper, Chelsea not only need the three away points against Sunderland but also a first real performance to match our aspirations. Due to this fact I am hoping and praying that AVB picks Danny Sturridge to start this weekend and totally forgets about Salomon Kalou!
Sturridge looked our main threat up front during the recent tour of Asia, where he over shadowed both Fernando Torres and Didier Drogba. We certainly missed his goal threat during our first three games and the lad deserves to be brought straight into the side following Drogba’s unfortunate concussion against Norwich City. I’d also like to see AVB grasp the nettle and drop Lamps to the bench tgive young Josh MacEachran a chance to show that his silky skills offer more than an out of form Lamps on the left side slot in midfield (if he’s fit now following his withdrawal from the under 21’s). Capello has pointed the way, now it is the new Chelsea managers turn to face the problem that is Frank Lamapard’s lack of form. Presumably our new signing from Liverpool, Raul Meireles, will still be out of action with his broken collar bone and we will all have to wait a little longer for our first glimpse of the impressive Portuguese in the blue of Chelsea.
Here’s hoping for a great Chelsea performance and a Danny Sturridge start on Saturday to bring all three points back to Stamford Bridge. And ‘if’ AVB must pick Kalou please please please only put him on the bench, he is not good enough to start when compared to the likes of Silva, Aguero, Tevez, Adam Johnson, Nasri, Rooney, Nani, Hernandez, Young; talented payers our competitors can choose from. Here’s to hoping for a Sturridge, Torres and Mata forward three, which will get the job done and help the team produce a performance that has been sadly lacking so far this term.
By Alan Frank