Chelsea 2 Arsenal 2
Tuesday 21st January 2020 20:15
Mid-table opposition for us tonight. From my sick bed this one. I was actually forbidden from going by a doctor after some spluttering gitbag on an Eva Air 777 gifted me a respiratory virus. So BT Sport it is. The only satisfied party is Bertie my Feline Overlord, because we now basically live on his schedule of sleep, sleep, sleep, sleep, eat a bit, sleep. If all of this suffering doesn’t make me thinner I will be devastated.
The Others: Not a lot else going on tonight, other than Everton initially proving that it isn’t f*cking difficult to beat Newcastle and then going to sleep and City making a meal out of yet another game.
Us: James injured, Emerson starts, Kovacic comes in over Mount who drops to the bench.
Them: Bellerin back after shirking most of the season. At some point he’s reflected on awful choices in life and cut his hair. BT resorted to showing Arsenal goals from ten years ago because there is nothing newer to excite their fans. Van Persie is a useless pundit. Predicts a 3-5 win for Arsenal. Says we’ve become likeable since Frank took over. Same will never be true of him. Stat wankery has also hit new levels. Using a vaguely mentioned collection of data, they have now claimed to pinpoint every time a team SHOULD have scored. Yes, apparently now they will tell you what your “expected goals” tally is measured against what you’ve actually scored. We should have scored 23 goals this season. And we’ve drop nine. Which is more than any other side. So in the figment of some sad b*stard’s completely f*cked up imagination, we suck. Right.
Here’s one for them to cling to. In the opening two minutes they had 96% possession. If they were Sp*rs they would have a DVD made. Half run from the Goons early, but then we broke free and it took Luiz and a block for them to get away with just a corner. Sham clearance from Kepa will have got a fair few people moaning. A Kovacic shot was blocked on six, at the expense of any future children Mustafi might have wanted. Build up play for that was excellent.
Torreira made a complete arse of himself rolling about on the floor as we waited to take a corner. Apparently a glancing blow from Dave’s arm is akin to being hit in the face by a wrecking ball judging by the hysterics that followed. Next corner saw the ball bounce off of Christensen, who just about headed it but it wasnt under control and went nowhere near the goal. Hold the press, Ozil was running. David Luiz looks bizarre in a red shirt. Sort of like if you put Jeremy Corbyn in a tux. Point blank range for Tammy on 14. Cross from CHO, strong header across from Rudi and surely it had to go in. But no, he couldn’t quite get hold of it. At this point we were building momentum and they hadn’t fashioned any kind of effort on goal. Not that that means anything with us. 16 minutes and CHO spotted Leno off his line. Think he was going to cross, but he hit a swinging shot that glanced off the bar. We’d had eight corners in little over 20 minutes, so you can’t say the attacking intent wasn’t there. Needed more to show for it though.
Tammy was away on 25, past Leno and running on an empty net when Luiz clattered in from behind. Mustafi’s fault, what a clown. Watching him defend must feel like Melania Trump every time her husband picks up a microphone. But a humiliating return to Stamford Bridge for Sideshow, who saw red for denying a clear goalscoring opportunity. He didn’t go at it like a maniac, but he still couldn’t temper his tackle so as to stay on the pitch. Jorginho stepped up: hop, skip and a jump and slides it into the right hand corner of the net. Boom. 1-0 up against ten men.
Just taking the piss out of them at this point. Shot from CHO with the outside of his right foot required a flying save by Leno on 31. One way traffic, literally nothing going right for L’Arse. Loving Kovacic tonight. Dancing about all over the place. They actually got in our box on 37, but still couldn’t get a shot off. Arteta still hadn’t made a change, though Rob Holding was bobbing about on the sideline. They had, however started stringing more than one pass together at a time. Even when we broke we looked either too scared or too lazy to press as the clock ticked down. Can we not be complacent please. The first half petered out with them crying about a hand ball. Three Gooners giving it 1-0 and you still don’t sing. That there is called irony. If it’s possible, they look even worse than Sp*rs did in the giant toilet bowl a few weeks ago. Three word team talk required by Frank at the break. “Kill, boys. Kill.”
Still no changes by Arteta as the second spell began. When they got the ball they were having a go, and who can blame them, they had nothing to lose at this point. They’ve got no dignity left. By 50 minutes they had resorted to playing football with their hands, though more through ineptitude than crafty intent. We needed to grab the game by the scruff of the neck again, as it was starting to look more like they still had a full complement on the pitch. Languid, was the only way to describe us. Unwilling to risk letting them in and so hanging back.
Guendouzi came on for Ozil, who despite accelerating above a walking pace once in the first half, had looked pointless again. Despite our unwillingness to finish them off, Arsenal had not had a single attempt on goal, on or off target in an hour of play. So you knew what was coming on 64 minutes. The usually infallible twins fell over, leaving Martinelli with a clear run on goal. Nothing Kepa could have done about that but Jesus f*cking wept, how did they end up two on one? Half an hour for us to get our sh*t together. A long range punt from Rudi went straight into Leno’s arms. Barkley getting ready, on at the expense of Kovacic. Three of them down at once with non-existent injuries. In case you were in any doubt as to what their game plan was going to be going forward. Mason Mount also getting ready to come on for Kante.
73 minutes and they were feigning cramp. At this point I was, Lord knows why, reasonably confident. Bellerin was hanging out of his arse, Torreira looked broken. Header by Tammy caught easily on 76, Lacazette robbed Barkley on the edge of the box but luckily they squandered the benefit. Willian off for Batman. Going two up front. They finally brought on Holding for Pepe, who was chased off the pitch for being a time-wasting git by the referee. Ref/VARwatch: Atwell in charge, didn’t do anything to piss me off. Which I think might be a first. No intervention at all from the Virtual A*sehole Referee, which was glorious.
A floating ball in was delivered onto the head of Barkley, but saved again. Corner followed corner. Batshuayi with a chance. Offside. My diatribe aimed at his silly ponytail and their subsequent time-wasting caused a coughing fit. DAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAVE!!!!!!!! Tammy limping trying to get onside, Michy offside again, but Dave was a mile on, surged out of the crowd and poked the ball with his right foot. GET IN! 2-1 less than five minutes to go. Tammy on the ground, we’re too idiotic to put it out, Arsenal reaping the benefits, me howling at the TV, Bertie howling for food. Chaos. And then what happens? F*cking Bellerin, who cant put one foot in front of the other he’s so wasted goes and scores with his right foot? I don’t think I’ve seen Arsenal with this much backbone since before I took my GCSEs. Tammy devastated because he couldn’t do any better, Rudi screaming with rage. We are absolute morons.
It had effectively been ten against ten since Tammy buggered his foot. The Batman had the chance to be the hero as the minutes ran away from us, but couldn’t turn it it. Four minutes added on. I’d won a £40 bet but at this rate I’d have to spend all that on getting sh*tfaced. If only we’d put this much effort into attacking for the previous ninety minutes. I. Hate. Short. Corners.
So: I’m torn. I’ve not lost sight of the fact that for Frank to be in this position come the end of the season would be an incredible achievement. I will take it. But not without swearing tonight. A lot. I’m pretty sure that Frank is going to swear more. Because we’re getting sucked into a scrap to stay there. Yet again our management of the game from a commanding position was questionable. Could have been eight points clear of United tonight. Half that now. Lead squandered twice. How we are still even in fourth when we’re this erratic is baffling. Arsenal had bigger stones than us tonight. Just let that sink in for a moment. Arsenal.
Photo comes from Chelsea's official website
Newcastle United 1 Chelsea 0
Saturday 18th January 2020 17:30
The Others: Can’t trust City to get anything done. Gits. Stern finger wag due to Gary Cahill. Pray for Leicester and an absolute miracle. Failing that I will be patenting my own brand of extra durable ear plugs. I’m in talks with Chelsea to have a pair included with every ticket for the Scouse away fixture in the spring.* But as per every other week we can laugh at L’Arse to make ourselves feel better. Because no matter what happens to us, life is sh*tter for them. And as with most other weeks we can laugh at Chequebook Pulis and the Sp*ds. Twats.
*This is a big fat lie.
Them: Some injury returnees. Including their captain. Fingers crossed they’d all be knackered after an hour. Joelinton hadn’t scored in about five years in the league. So you knew what to expect. Two matches in four days for them. Bruce couldn’t have done that when he was a player. It’d wipe him out now. Unsurprisingly Andy Carroll was not fit. Other than for the knackers yard.
Us: Kante back in the starting line up at the expense of Ross. Hooray for the twins, unfortunate for the latter who played well against Burnley. Sadly that meant his nominated, last-ditch Fancast replacement Smutbuddy Glover stayed at home with the dogs too. Sad for the dogs, I mean.
I hate this fixture, though we’ve beaten them the last three times we’ve faced them. Too many occasions it has f*cked us over. I boycott it every year because of the sh*t seats they give away fans. I’m not spending 24 hours on a game when you shiver your bits off half a mile up and the players look the size of mosquitos from where you are. Newcastle can poke it. Especially when some of Thailand’s finest mosquitos have been feasting on my ankles and one of my boobs for the last week. I’ve had enough. I’d rather do Veganuary. Which can f*ck right off. Two chains claiming if the sear a watermelon, (yuck) then if you shut your eyes and switch your brain off it a) tastes like a steak or b) is tuna. Well which one is it? Tell you what. It’s neither. BECAUSE IT IS A WATERMELON. And worse, it’s a rank, hot watermelon. Idiots.
Anyway. Not even the locals had their moobs out when this kicked off, it was that cold. Average possession for Newcastle is the lowest in league this season. Just about 30%. Bruce starting with a 9-1 formation. Which is why he’s had more jobs in the last five years than I’ve had boyfriends. Ever. I wonder what their plan was.
A mistake by Rudiger let them in early on, but the header in the box to set up an attempt on goal was woeful. Only the second time Rudi and Christensen have played together at the back this season, but it would turn out just fine for 93 minutes. Willems was broken inside ten minutes. Only slightly exceeded the length of time he faced us for Frankfurt last season. Innocuous coming together with CHO. All momentum lost by the time we restarted. A good break on 13 ended up running out of play, which was disappointing. Moments later Mount squeezed it across the face of goal but there was nobody there. Another break on 15 came to nothing, and another bar-code was lying on the floor. Caught by Mount, but again, pretty tame stuff. What did I say about Joelinton? Headed one off the bar on 20. Scuffed away in the end by Reece James. Soon enough they were coming at us again. We’d stalled after five minutes of disruption and they’d manage to take advantage of it. There was a good ball into the box by James on 24, but again, there was no-one there to meet it.
We’d got a grip back on the game now, though on 28 it required a sneaky pull back from Rudi to prevent them making a break. No shots on target as yet. It was our turn to hit the woodwork on 32 but Tammy was offside. Kante was on the end of another brilliant James ball on 33, but the keeper took care of it well. First shot on target from either side. Yet another good ball in from James on 39, everything that was good had him involved. We were having a prolonged attacking spell as the half closed out, capped off by a foul on Jorginho that gave us a decent free kick on 42 just outside the area. Mount on the end of it, but it was deflected out for a corner as he tried to bend it round the wall. Five minutes added on. Corner won by Dave on 45, sadly sailed right into the Keeper’s arms. Pinball in the box finally put out by them on 47. Dammit. A quick break from them came to nothing when the referee declared the ball was rolling. Shame. Chorus of “You Don’t Know What You’re Doing” from them. 0-0 at the break. Not horrible but not great either.
The ball was shanked wide by Willian on 52. We outnumbered them at the time going back and should have done better. Rumoured that he had a niggle at half time, so we’ll put it down to that rather than him being a f*ckwit. Another stinging shot by Dave, again from range on 54 but it went straight at the keeper before half a chance for Voldemort went begging.
A wall of barcodes. Did I mention I hate this fixture? It was getting frustrating now trying to break this down, and Frank’s answer was to send Barkley on for Mason Mount. He played damn well, but we were plodding towards Frank’s first 0-0 in charge of the Blues. Best chance yet for Abraham on 71, but the angle was wrong. His feet got muddled and it ended up missing an open path to goal and going wide instead. When have you ever seen a referee ordering a player the other side of the line when he needs treatment so that he can press the game on? Which brings me to Ref/VARwatch: Chris Kavanagh. Douchebag. Buy a bigger shirt. The smuggling peanut pot belly look is off-putting. VAR twat was Kevin Friend. Blissfully anonymous. Anthony Taylor waving the scoreboard. If he looks like getting into his shorts at any point, someone brick him. So we had to do a swift swap and hoik James off. Dave doing his nut at Kavanagh who suddenly wants to apply Queensberry rules to an openly flouted bit of anti-sportsmanship that occurs atelier ground in the country, every week. Emerson on.
Fifteen minutes to go and Emerson still sorting his socks out. A sloppy corner was somehow kept alive, but despite pressing on it came to nothing. Pretty relentless from us as we approached 80 minutes, but barely any of it in the box. When it was, Abraham’s hooked effort was cleared from in front of the line. Off he went for Michy. Sigh. It might make me mean, but I’m never inspired when he gets bowled in as the answer to a situation like this. A CHO cross on 81 just missed Michy’s head. Shame. Tammy being a few inches taller might have got on the end of it. Another effort straight afterwards rebounded out and was absolutely thumped by Emerson, but it deflected wide. B*llocks. Emerson booked for diving. Harsh. Wasn’t a free kick though. They over played their hand on 85 and ended up squandering the chance to have a go, and back up the other end it went. Cross from Barkley could have fallen to someone, but didn’t.
Joelinton smashed it wide on 87. Well wide. And yet probably their best effort in the second half thus far. They’d been flaccid and uncreative. So you knew what was coming. Four minutes added on and we looked bereft now, out of ideas. Nothing had worked. Could Frank bring himself on? Then. Jammy, JAMMY f*ckers. From a shocking corner somehow they’ve put it in. So much a smash and grab it should carry a custodial sentence. Straight out of the playbook of Freddy the Frog.
So: On a day full of draws we fell short of even that. But not really any worse off when you consider Sp*d and City results. I was going to say Arsenal too, but then I looked and saw how far down the league they are and just laughed. Reece James was exceptional, Barkley impressed and brought a new dimension when he came on. I’m really bored of the Kepa bashing. If I was a woke I’d claim it was racist and cry on twitter about it to all my fellow overly PC loser friends. But there’s more chance of me becoming a Sp*rs fan. I’m still confident about Tuesday. They can’t play like the Toon did today, because they have Luiz et al at the back. So it will be much easier to break them down. I’m going to find some gin and to try and buy back the love of my feline overlord, who can smell elephant on my dirty washing and knows I cheated on him.