Chelsea 0 Manchester City 0 (Citeh win on penalties)
Carabao Cup Final
Sunday 24th February 2019 16:30
A flatter set of fans on their way to Wembley for a proper game (not Sp*rs) you never did see, but by the time everyone converged at the ground we were all more than ready to make an enthusiastic go of it.
In the News: Zidane won’t be put off by transfer ban and will be given £200m to spend. Is anyone else seeing the conflict in this sentence? If any of this is true, and we do get the ban reduced, he must be smoking some seriously wacky sh*t to want to be a part of this madness. But shall I be a killjoy? It wasn’t especially hard to win trophies with the most awesome squad in Europe. We are an entirely different prospect.
Michael vs. Marina. This is obviously a lot more convoluted but I wanted to throw some FACTS out there in the style of a certain Spaniard given where we are now, and how mach of a pariah Emanalo was for so many fans:
Emanalo was appointed Technical Director in summer 2011 with Roman demanding that instead of throwing money around, Chelsea needed to be more savvy in the transfer market. In the first 18 months or so:
21 year-old Kevin de Bruyne for £8m
19 year-old Thibaut Courtois for £8m
18 year-old Romelu Lukaku for £14.8m
21 year old Eden Hazard for £31.5m
22 year-old Dave for £7.9m
21 year-old Mohamed Salah for £14.8m
All of that for little over £80m.
In the windows since he left:
Mateo Kovacic on loan
Gonzalo Higuain on loan
Discuss. If you can be a*sed.
City could be next with a transfer ban apparently. Clattenburg and his mercenary hair plugs are off to China now. Someone has got to deal with Fellaini and his elbows I suppose. Courtois has been named the best keeper of 2018 by the International Federation of Football History and Statistics. If that doesn’t clarify that 90% of all statistics are a waste of energy I don’t know what does. United have actually been covering their pitch in garlic. Call it an overreaction, but when it comes to Firminho and those teeth you can never take too seriously the threat of vampires dropping by. In the pub pre-game we laughed muchly about the United excuse I was given this week about the reason for giving Phil Jones a lengthy new contract. They didn’t want to get caught out should he go on a free. I’m pretty sure the only offer he’d have got would have been £10 an hour from Morrison’s. And even then they would have had him out the back of the bakery sweeping crumbs and nowhere near the customers. That said, it is always possible that Lidl could have swept in with a better offer.
The Others: After a humiliating result, Leicester canned Puel. Brendan Rodgers is the favourite to replace him, which at least means he isn’t coming to Chelsea. Little Pea did an Henry to sink Fulham. No sooner does a Sp*rs player (Sanchez) go and claim they are contenders for the title than they then go all Sp*rsy and lose to Burnley. That’s the universe telling you to sit down and shut the f*ck up. Dropped points by the Scouse (Yay for humanity) and United, which means if we win against Sp*rs we might not be so monumentally f*cked trying to get into the Champions League. Klopp was caught conferring with Ole about what a sh*t game it was. But Arsenal won. There’s nothing worse than a pseudo middle-class Gooner walking a yappy dog, with a sleeve tattoo, (him not the dog) a massively receding hipster hairdo and a pot belly, wearing a skintight shirt. And sunglasses indoors. Not even on his head but his forehead. Who gets out a pink f*cking blanket for the mutt. And a Tupperware water pot. I almost wanted to glass him and put him out of his misery. But they gave us plastic cups at the pub in Marylebone. So his torment endures.
Us: Gone in 60 Minutes. Hardly any lectures. He gave them a break in preparation, and it certainly seemed to have paid off. No Alonso, no striker either. No starting place for Hudson-Odoi after his exploits on Thursday.
Them: Urgh whatever. Loads of expensive people.
The usual final fanfare. Charles (special alias) was impressed by the cahones on display from the FA. To invest all that effort on a massive banner bearing Sarri’s likeness when you weren’t sure he’d even be there. That said we don’t know that they didn’t have ones of Blanc, Holland, Hiddink, Zola a blank one and even f*cking Wenger out the back just in case.
DISCLAIMER: If I’ve got any of the players wrong, its because we were so far away from the pitch that it was a miracle we could spot the difference between Kepa and Kante.
Five minutes without conceding. We’ll aim low to start with. We can do this.
Four seconds for Aguero to start cheating. For a start, he ran into Jorginho, who is a quarter of his size. There is no way his big a*se is going down in that scenario without his own intent. Unless he’s going to claim that Jorginho’s ears took a swipe at him. 50 more seconds for them to win their first corner, but as it turned out, we went longer without conceding than last time. Jokingly, from on the roof where our beloved club had seated the first people to buy tickets, we set ourselves the lofty target of matching Newport County, who went 51 minutes in the cup without conceding to St. Pep and his minions. Of course they had much of the early possession, but on nine minutes Luiz put a fine ball up to Kante. Who was promptly fouled. You’ll understand why nothing was done about this as we continue. If I can see a foul from two and half miles away, lord knows why the official picked for the biggest fixture of the weekend can’t. But we were doing well. We looked disciplined at the back, which made for a change against decent opposition. In the opening twenty minutes they hadn’t even had a shot. Neither had we, but let’s not get carried away. Over the bar from Aguero on 21. By the half hour mark their fans were getting frustrated about the lack of goalmouth action. We were just relieved. We almost had a hideous own goal for them in injury time, and a corner to end the half. With which we didn’t even manage to clear the first man. But its all about perspective. We were not four goals behind at the break.
As the players reemerged we had six more minutes to survive as long as Newport County. Both sides were willing to attack. Another foul by them unpunished, another high city effort to begin. Still no shots on target at either end. Our defence was still holding up well. The magic 51 minute mark! This time at the Etihad we were about to go 5-0 down. Not only were we not losing, but we were trying to score at the other end. On 52 Hazard broke and we were off, only to be wholly outnumbered in the box. Then they hit us back, but it was finally ushered out. Aguero was blatantly offside on 55, not that their excitable fans noticed, despite his luminous, early mid-life crisis hair. VAR was invoked. Wasn’t going to make it any more onside. Refwatch: Jonathan Moss. Are you f*cking serious? Couldn’t they have just flown Oliver down after the United game? Or found a Big Issue seller looking for some freelance work outside the tube? A litany of the usual sh*t decisions in the first half. 57 minutes before he finally booked any of them for the cheating sh*thousery. Wouldn’t know what persistent fouling was if it ripped his cock off, covered it in scotch bonnets, doused it in petrol, lit it on fire and and shoved it down his throat. Couldn’t get throw ins right, even fell on his pudgy arse at one stage to crown a typically flaccid display.
Anyway, ensuing free kick from rare sensible refereeing decision was a complete waste of time. Landed on the roof of that car park next to the stadium that looks like it’s made of f*cking Meccano.
65 mins we were in again, best chance yet but blazed over. Probably by Eden Hazard but he’s small at the best of times, never mind from this distance. Rudi was great from the off, Luiz got stronger and stronger. But the star of the defence today was Emerson. If he hasn’t budged his way in as the first choice left back this week then truly, Sarri is blind. This was a finely poised game, but it was going to hinge on the changes. Oh dear. Kovacic for Barkley in the next five minutes. You heard it here first. In the meantime we broke again, Hazard gunning towards the goal, played in Pedro Pony, who for some godforsaken reason didn’t shoot. Arrrrgh! It was end to end now. Take a deep breath, but Hudson-Odoi was our first sub. 30-odd thousand absolutely stunned Chelsea fans watching Sarri make a sensible change instead of bringing on Kovacic.
With a little over ten minutes to go, both managers made a change. PP paid for his transgression by making way, and David Silva went off for Gundogan. We were pressing far more now, and trying to be completely objective, our attacks outnumbered theirs. Dare I say we looked like we were actually trying to win it? Which was terrifying knowing what City can do to you on the break. Pep made his last change bringing on Sane for the Ginger Prince (so nicknamed where we were sitting because he was untouchable no matter what he did) We were really pressing with two minutes to go. Of course Moss knew exactly where to find his card when it came to Jorginho. He deserved it, but but it grated when he had failed to punish them for anything. Barkley for Loftus-Cheek. F*ck me, had someone switched out his cigarettes for something more potent? Sarri wanted to win this in normal time. The cynic in me thought it might be because he couldn’t get away with smoking on the premises at Wembley and he was just desperate for a fag.
City burst into life with seconds left of normal time. Four minutes added. In truth it would have been unfair If anyone scored in the dying seconds, as it had been an even, well contested game. Not that I would have given if a sh*t if it had been us that snatched it at the death. We had one tipped over from the free kick, another narrow offside decision. The Lino was right on this occasion but I thought the excuse for letting Harry F*cking Kane through against us was that they had been told to keep their flags down when VAR was present? It was, however, the right decision this time. City rounded off with ten men after Fernandinho was carried off. Karma for all the times he’s tried to decapitate other people. Jammy buggers were going to get an extra sub for extra time, which meant they could bring their numbers up. Unfortunately so were we, but more on that soon.
It was a low key start, apart from the pitch-side beer swilling homophobe on the other side of the divide who barely paused for breath. As the stewards watched on. It took nearly an hour for someone to finally drag the little scrote out. Higuain on for Willian after five minutes, I might get a nosebleed with all these attacking substitutions. He made an early break alongside Kante, but the best they could manage this time was another corner. Higuain and Kanye set us off on seven and won a corner. Both teams threatening to break, and the game was simmering nicely. A lot of faffing in tight spaces on 10 minutes before a wide lash from Jorginho, another high effort from Hazard moments later. After the short interval we had to scramble it off the line, though we were sure they were offside even from a mile away. Rudi fell over and they managed to forge a terrifying opportunity, but Kepa saved, breaking himself in the process. Were we going to see poetry now? A former city keeper to come on for penalties?
Then came Mutiny on the HMS Chelsea.
Firstly, all this crap about Sarri bringing on Big Willy as a tactical decision because he is a penalty specialist is b*llocks. Surely every goalkeeper would claim to be a penalty specialist? It’s their job?
Kepa has been injured
Kepa looked to have broken himself in the same place again
Sarri went to replace him on this basis
Kepa was OK to continue
There was a lack of communication on this point, exacerbated by the medical staff coming off and telling the manager that he needed to be replaced
God bless City, they were booing away as if this was a ploy on our part to waste time. Nope, we are just actually this ridiculous.
Moss goes to stamp his authority, Terrifying.
Kepa refuses to make way.
Moss gets it right, because the recommendation in this scenario is apparently to just play on
Sarri loses his sh*t. Sorry but Team Chicago and Team Sweden and self watched the video back in the pub and cried with laughter.
The Chuckle Brothers do Wembley.
The Wengeresque water bottle slam was nothing compared to the hulk style shirt-rippage that came just before it like Sarri was about to bust out of his special tracksuit (because kudos, he made an effort, he was not in his usual pyjamas) -
A moment that was so intrinsically Chelsea. As in bonkers.
Then he appeared to go: “F*ck this I’m going for a fag” and stomped off towards the tunnel
Before he realised he had two more minutes of extra time and a penalty shootout, both of which he was required to lead us through
“Player power” scream the press plebs after the whistle went and others, mainly Rudi, made a pointed effort to keep the two apart.
This is not player power. This is extremely smart on the part of those involved. We had a shootout to try and win. And any fallout should not have happened in public.
Well done Rudiger.
Being as dumbfounded as everyone else (apart from Little Willy, whose face was a classic portrait of “Oh HELL no!”) does not make Dave a sh*t captain. Daily Fail cites “fans” saying he is a disgrace.
I debate whether these are actual fans, along with the ones giving it the “Kepa should never play for us again” I love that the Red Swarm just dip into the cesspool that is social media daily now to find outrageous quotes they can use to blanket attribute a nonsense opinion to everyone in blue.
He’s apologised - let it go and play him on Wednesday. Tear a strip off him in private if need be.
We talked about who might be the one to start a mutiny in the final on LoveSport on Friday night. I called Eden, another suggestion was Luiz. Nobody called Kepa. He doesn’t even shout at his own defenders.
As a side bar, we spent a fair but of time perving over someone on the bench whilst reviewing all the screen caps of Hulk Sarri, before we realised it was Rob Green. I feel no shame, whatsoever.
Jorginho: Saved easy to read, slow, ponderous. He was suitably devastated.
Gundogan: Sends Kepa the wrong way
Dave: High but emphatic
Cheating peroxide dog nonce: almost saved by Kepa. Jammy bastard.
Emerson: Close, but in
Some Bloke: Saved!! No f*cking idea. Someone in a light blue shirt with dark hair
Luiz: Keeper guesses right but the f*cking thing hit the post. A rare spot kick faux pas from him.
B Silva: Scored
Hazard: Easiest one yet, after a lame attempt by Ederson to put him off.
Kepa goes the right way for the last one but it slips under his body and goes in. Balls.
So: I can’t be angry at the result. We gave it a go, HE gave it a go. The defence was disciplined, and nobody had a bad day. Sarri made all of the changes we’ve been begging for in recent weeks, and every one of the outfield changes was aimed at winning the game. We were talking fine, fine margins today and we just fell short, against a team that decapitated us a couple of weeks ago and shat down our neck. Sarri has more wins in his first English season that Pep did at the same point. He thinks its unfair that he is deemed to be failing when Emery is in exactly the same position. And he has made a final where the waxwork has not. He could not have done any more to keep his job today, but I require much, MUCH more convincing if he is to stay long term. Starting with a continuation of this fine performance and his adaptation against Sp*rs on Wednesday night. I will admit thought, there was a part of me that watched him flinging stuff about like a crazed lunatic and going into meltdown on the touchline, actually showing some proper emotion, that thought: Bless you, you big scruffy dope, perhaps you could be one of us after all.