ChelseaD is as close as we are allowed to get to identifying the young (everyone, viewed from here, is young) woman in Blue who looks forward to another win over Sunderland on Sunday but benignly offers hope of a tighter margin than last season. What else do we know about her? Well, she runs The Chelsea Blog and, tongue pressed firmly into cheek, enjoys the high moral ground of supporting a club whose players never cheat. No, she’s not the Chelsea fan who took delight that rainy day in January in walking past the away end loudly exclaiming “Appreciate!” …
Salut! Sunderland: Despite your setback at Anfield, everyone assumes Chelsea will win the Premier League with ease this season. Is that how Blues fans see it?
Cheers for the reminder!
I can’t speak for the majority but I’ve never assumed we’d win anything this season. If anything, I’ve thought we’d been sailing by the seat of our pants for a few weeks anyway and needed to play a lot better against Liverpool if we were to come out of it with anything. The fact that we didn’t and were missing Lampard, Essien – and even Drogba for 45 minutes of it – showed we’re no less vulnerable than anyone else when it comes to dropping points.
Salut! Sunderland has not always written approvingly of Chelsea but came out strongly, when last season’s title was far from decided, in favour of your club as deserving champions, Do you think the quality of football you played last season, carried forward as it has been to this season, has helped chip away at anti-Chelski prejudice?
We’re hardly flavour of the month but I guess playing the way we have under Ancelotti and City drawing all the attention when it comes to spending money these days haven’t done us any harm.
And are we in for another seven-goal battering?
You’d have thought so at the start of the season and we’ll certainly have a point to prove after a defeat but I reckon we’ll let you off with a tighter margin this time.
How bad did you think we were that day – don’t suppose it ever occurred to you that of the mini-league of clubs you’d hit for seven we were top of goal difference having scored two!
I think that result was more a case of us being really good than you being really bad. I honestly thought it was one of our best attacking displays of the season, we really were a different class. Having said that, the two we conceded were pretty sloppy, which was disappointing.
Who are the best players you have seen in Chelsea colours and are there any you feel didn’t deserve to wear them?
There’s been plenty I’ve questioned for different reasons but if I had to nail it down to one of each, Gianfranco Zola stands out both for his performances on the field and his professionalism off it, whilst Adrian Mutu was a complete bloody joke.
Chelsea have pots of money, but so do Man City and – to a lesser extent – other clubs with rich owners (and Sunderland fans can hardly claim to be completely isolated from the phenomenon). But what is your honest view of the way corporate football has developed in England?
Of course, as a Chelsea supporter, I have to appreciate that Roman’s money not only saved us but allowed us to go on and win titles but let’s be honest, football doesn’t feel the same anymore. Often paid too much for too little, players have turned into commercial vehicles for everything from Adidas to Armani, loyalty comes in the form of cards and points and contracts might as well be written in pencil for all they’re worth.
You must go to every game expecting to win. Does that get boring or does it just create pressures that are different from those experienced by fans of clubs outside the top three or four?
I don’t go into any game expecting to win and I’d imagine most Chelsea supporters who were around for many years before our more recent successes would know where I’m coming from with that – pessimism pays much bigger bonuses than arrogance for me. We definitely have higher expectations placed on us now though, so from a supporter’s point of view, every defeat brings a lot more flak than it used to.
Have you already forgotten the World Cup or cannot you wait for the next one?
What World Cup?
Has the time come to abandon high-minded principles about cheating – diving, feigning injury, trying to get opponents booked or sent off – and accept it as part of the game? If not, how do we stamp it out?
I’m just glad we don’t have any of that from our players.
Seriously though, the trouble with cheating these days is that it doesn’t stop at the odd stumble on the pitch anymore, managers are trying to gain the advantage through the press more and more and for me, whether official’s are manipulated before or during a game it amounts to the same thing. Stamping it out is the hard bit because for that to happen there has to be consistency from officials and I can’t see that happening in my lifetime.
What did you think about Danny Murphy/s comments about cloggers and the managers of certain clubs such as Stoke and Birmingham who, he felt, encouraged aggressive play?
If he was a manager, would Danny Murphy send his players out with a “tally ho gents” or a “get out there and kick arse”? Enough said.
Do you have any thoughts good or bad about Sunderland, the club/city/fans?
Depends on the score.
Will you be at the game? What will be the score?
No, I won’t be making the game and as for the score…….I’ll leave the predictions to those supporters less superstitious than myself.
* ChelseaD on ChelseaD
I started TheChelseaBlog during Avram Grant’s time as manager because it was either that or Prozac and prescriptions weren’t the cheapest option. I’ve been supporting Chelsea for almost 30 years now, call it a family inheritance if you like although for many of them years it probably felt more like an affliction. Never one to make life easy for myself though, aside from supporting Chelsea, I work as a manager within the NHS – hence the cynical nature. But would I change either? Not a chance!
Interview: Colin Randall