Chelsea Preview | Importance of the First Goal | Mourinho…

I thought a while ago that Mourinho’s return to Chelsea hinged on him changing his style. An Oligarch reemploying a man he’d spent 20 million to get rid of seemed odd, and suggested that something had changed.

In an interview the other day, Mourinho alluded to an inability (for whatever reason) to resort to his usual style:

“One of the easiest things in football is to win 1-0… It’s not so difficult. You structure your team from the back, you organise your team from the defensive idea, you don’t give freedom to your players to express themselves.

‘The dynamic of the team is defensive and what you do is you recover the ball and try to punish the opponent on the counter-attack.

‘To win 1-0 is not the most difficult thing in football.

‘I don’t want to because we are going in a direction which is the right direction in terms of the quality of football we want to play, and it’s quite frustrating that you have to change that and go one step back and go in another direction just because you want better results.’


Bollocks, it has to be.

I struggle to believe that Mourinho ‘doesn’t want to’ play a certain way; in fact I expect it’s exactly how he’d want to play given the chance. It probably has more to do with Abramovic not wanting his hobby to become incredibly boring. Boring hobbies are pretty pointless.

As we all know, the first goal is hugely significant in any big game, but especially this one. Aside from the obvious: putting us a goal up, it will cause Chelsea to change their ways, to play in a way they’re not comfortable with.

If we get the early goal, I fully expect us to win this game. But if we don’t things will get infinitely more frustrating. The longer we leave it, the closer we’ll get to a post-match Lampard-bum-licking session.

None of us need that… Lampard doesn’t even need that.

Koscielny is “80/90%” out, the poor chap. I have a strange inkling he might be available. If he isn’t, then it’s not ideal, but better him than the BFG. Aside from that no new injuries… Podolski returns, but it might be a little early to start him.

I guess the team will look a little like this. Hard to know whether Flamini or Arteta will be preferred, I suspect the latter for his greater range of passing. Chelsea will likely cede possession as well, giving us less need for a Corsican ball-winning maniac.



                 Sagna               Per              Vermaelen          Gibbs


                                    Ramsey           Arteta


                Cazorla                      Ozil               Walcott                        




Apologies for the lackluster post, a day shopping has drained me in ways I didn’t think possible. I’d  feel fresher after a day spent headbutting my computer keyboard. I’d probably have produced a more interesting match preview as well…



73 Replies to “Chelsea Preview | Importance of the First Goal | Mourinho…”

  1. Whose article was this? : ). Whoever it is.. thank you for taking the time out to write it, despite a long day.

    I hope we win of course, but it’s not the end of the world if we lose. I just hope the fans don’t boo us if we lose – won’t hold my breath though.

  2. I agree the first goal is key and hope that the players don’t get too nervous about it. Our players will be looking for an early goal to settle the nerves but this is where I suspect dean will come in, Chelsea will foul us to stop our breaks and dean will not do anything. I actually expect Chelsea to profit from such situations, where our player is fouled,the ref waves play on, and with our fouled player on the deck with others half appealing to the ref Chelsea breaks and take advantage of the situation. I sincerely hope I’m wrong though. With Walcott back I expect we will pose Azpillacueta some problems. COYG!!

  3. Bejesus – it’s proper Barnsley out there tonight. Let’s hope it’s not called off. And for a big, lovely win!

  4. Agree fully the first goal will set the course.

    I do think as well that the current chelsea team is not that solid on defending.
    Given our striker option i believe the damage that can occur from the midfield.Sure i do expect yellow cards and maybe suspensions on this game as Osil will be targeted.

  5. I feel the weather and particularly the state of the pitch will be instrumental in deciding the outcome of tonight’s game.
    On the black side, it will allow an inept referee like Dean to ignore fouls, on the grounds that conditions have played the major part in the incident…..rather than the deliberate intent to injure on behalf of Chelsea FC.

  6. What have you been smoking, the comments are worse than the article, Dean will let Chelsea players go out to injure?
    Its a game between two good teams why can’t you gooners just respect that and stop getting in the excuses before the game has even kicked off? the result won’t decide the season and City will likely end above us both anyway.

  7. I feel that this match should have been postponed,a drenched pitch isn’t suitable for our quick passing game. And as nicky points out, these horrible conditions could be used to defend bad fouling on Chelsea’s part by blaming it on a slippery pitch.

  8. @AL
    Just watching on TV. What you predicted at 6.36 nearly happened just now. Finally Dean pulled up play for a blatant shirt pull by Torres. And just saw a vile foul on Sagna. It was called by the ref, but Chelsea obviously think they can get away with things.

  9. I saw that too Pat. Also wanted to see a replay of the offside call on Ramsey but Sky not giving us anything, maybe they’re slightly concerned about what happened at City?

  10. Alan Smith is start to get annoying now, always praising the opposition.

    Rosicky was just pulled back when we were on a break….

  11. Let’s see if the spineless FA retrospectively punish Mikel for that tackle, dean didn’t penalise him for that

  12. Should have had a penalty and a red card going for us, none given. Did we expect anything else from this ref.

  13. Oh come on nobody today,win draw or lose, come on her and defend this ref, or call him incompetence. How thr hell is that not a penalty, he had a clear view and it was obvious, and why isnt mikel not red carded for that tackle. Somebody explains to me, why do they hate us that much? And why do those thugs show up, cant they try a bit of football, a bit of entertainment, or are they becoming the new stoke

  14. I normally don’t watch halftime analysis, but want to hear what they say about those two incidents….

  15. And how could lampard get that shot if h didnt pull Arteta back before he run, wtf is this refereeing

  16. When Sky presenters are saying that we should have had a penalty and a 50-50 red card, then I have all I need to know that Dean is useless.

    I do hope that we take our chances. We didn’t create many in the 1st half but when we do, I hope that we take them.

  17. so in summary Lampard and Azipillucueta should have been booked, chelsea should be a man down and we should have had a penalty.. Best league in the world my arse…

  18. At least they both agree 100% penalty but not given. Split on the red card, but the important thing is even though Gary Neville thought it was a yellow card offence, the ref didn’t even blow for a foul nor give a yellow.

    Yassin, wait till we lose this game, then you’ll see the sewer rats come out of the woodwork

  19. My blood is boiling right now, ivanovic almost dislocated Ozil’s jaw with a high boot and nothing given. Rosicky doesn’t even touch the same culprit and gets a yellow. Just before that hazard had taken Sagna out at the touchline leaving him in a heap and dean just waved play on giving Chelsea a massive advantage.

  20. Thought Alan Smith would have run out of superlatives for describing Chelsea but on and on he goes….

  21. Smudger works for Sky. Says what he’s paid to say, I guess. Either that or he likes the taste of Morinhos shoe leather.

  22. “Mike Dean deserves a special mention…”

    So spake Sky Sport commentator at the end of the game.
    It’s 1984 coming true.

  23. Let’s see if FA does something about Ivanovich kicking Ozil in the face, since the ref obviously didn’t see anything. Watching this game was so irritating because of Dean!

  24. This has to stop
    3 obvious straight red cards, and a penalty. 3mins wtf? This is not acceptable. No something has to stop this. And what type of a team that challenge on a title is this, the most awful, unentertaining way of playing i ever watched. We were lucky today that Arteta got out with two foots.

    You are right, Arsenal wont win the league with those in charge, we lost 7 points with refereeing against us, we need justice out here, we need untilted playing field. And when we got the momentum, that ,s***h*** Ramirez went to ground with a stomach hurt, and the replies showed he was lying. This is total cheating and i hate cheating.

  25. Disgraceful at many levels. A.Smith is a font of information.

    ‘Podolski gives Arsenal an option up front’ No shit Sherlock.

    @ Matt Clarke. – Agreed.

  26. Red and penalty: in both occasions Dean was a meter away and had his eyes on it. Complete bias or corruption?! Even Aljazeerah commentators say it should have been red+penalty and ref should have seen it.
    The weather didn’t help and we didn’t cover ourselves in glory either. Joint first on X’Mas ain’t bad.

  27. I just wonder why we had no subs
    We could use the speed and creativity of someone like Santi in the last moments of the game
    Mesut was tightly controlled and played nervous, so he or Theo who was invisible today, could be changed with him
    Olly was very poor, and I hate his early frustration against big teams

  28. So, no penalty and no red card. Everybody mentions these incidents. Mourinho claims Arsenal were frustrated – maybe, but not because of you Jose. Because of Mike Dean.

    Anyway, we did well to get a draw in the circumstances and we’re still second in the league, equal on points with Liverpool. I think after the loss to Manchester City this will have steadied the ship again – back to our defensive best. Now we’ve just got to beat the next two refs.

    Kieran Gibbs acted like a leader during that incident with Ivanovic on Ozil. And I saw Rosicky shouting and clapping and encouraging. We’ve got plenty of leaders.

    Must stop to listen to Arsene!

  29. This is a fu***ng disgrace, we ended this match with more yellow cards than Chelsea! Ramires, ivanovic and Mikel could easily have walked under normal circumstances, but we end with more cards than Chelsea.

    Persian gunner,
    I think you need your vision checked mate, our boys did as well as they could under the circumstances, and only a moron could criticise them after watching this match.

  30. I believe we couldn’t win this game, because we went to it with the most predictable line up
    When you know the other side has planned everything to silence Mesut, why not try another program and surprise them
    I don’t know, of course Arsene knows better than me
    Just want to talk right now

  31. Arsene Wenger: hundred per cent penalty – no doubt. Gary Neville agrees. And yet he won’t criticize Mike Dean. And Jamie Carragher says as well as it being a penalty, Mikel should have got a red card for the tackle on Arteta because he could have broken his leg. Gary Neville won’t agree. What’s the matter with him?

  32. We’re getting reeled in, come May noone will still be remembering the two disallowed goals at City, and two denied penalties against City and Chelsea. If these things had been awarded correctly that could have been 4 to 6 points,and the difference between being on 36 points today and being 40 or 42.

  33. Al
    You are one my favorites here at untold, and it’s because I find you very logical in different situations
    So do you really believe that asking for fresh legs in the final minutes of such an intense game, makes me moron?! 🙂

  34. Well. Just back from the game. A late winner would’ve been nice.

    So. Micky D: I’m not a ref, not even for fun. And even my minuscule football brain could predict his performance.
    And so it seems, could 101geratgoals! At the least, they too have been reading Untold.

    Everyone sat around me was happy to question the integrity of the match official. With good Reason.

  35. Guys,

    Calm down. It was a good game which neither side wanted to lose. Giroud should not be blamed for our inability to win today. We did not create that many chances and he almost took one of those. The fact that AW allowed all the 11 players to complete the game imply to me that he believed that none of them were doing badly.

    Let us not start scapegoating our players please. We have navigated our most difficult run of games so far. Yes, it would have been better to gain more points but we are where we are. Let’s move forward together.

    My people of the match today are the Gooners at the Emirates. They were loudest when Chelsea were dominating. I hope we can keep that level of support going.

    Unto Upton Park we march!

  36. @Pat

    Can’t critisize the refs. As far as the media are concerned, their sh*t don’t stink.

    The refs are the ‘Result Police’ that are supposed to guarantee that the team that has paid for the league will get it.

    Maybe i’m too cynical, but this stinks worse than a week dead fish.

    The FA and the PL can stick their filthy scam where the sun don’t shine. Plenty more things to watch until this elaborate pantomime is exposed and broken.

  37. The spineless FA act on the media’s reaction, and am afraid Gary has let Mikel off the hook by refusing to acknowledge it was a red.
    Ramires’ stamp on Arteta was just as bad, but being overshadowed by this Mikel debate. Anyway, when you see even Sky devote the entire halftime analysis to analysing those two incidents (the penalty and possible red) it shows we had a case.

  38. It’s a red card. Not a lot of debate really. Mikel regularly makes those kinds of challenges incidentally. On a lucky day you might get a yellow, but it ought to be red. Dean gives zip.

    These days I watch football as if I have been coralled along to watch an execution. I find it hard to get impassioned about something so hopelessly mismanaged.

    Ivanovic could have got red for his head chop on Ozil.

    Most players in the EPL are paid wages; AFC players get danger money

  39. The match was frustrating, but this was because Chelski were allowed to get way with a series of manipulative professional fouls as they tried to stop us playing.

    Chelski are a good team and when in negative football mode, as devised by the Conceited One, are hard to break down; having said that we were robbed by Dean the Despicable. However, we are fortunate that we seem to have no leg breaks or other serious injuries after that performance.

    I thought that after half time Chelski deliberately tried to bully us – and failed – at one point Dean, through his bias and incompetence was close to losing control of the game, but Chelski expected to get away with it.

    Another very poor ref performance – as the preview predicted.

    Our team tried really hard and I am proud of the way they played – against 12 men. Lets not criticise some of our players after that match – the perceived danger men were double marked for much of the match & as Chelski tired only then did they start to get more space. For me it was amoral victory for the Arsenal against the antics of the Conceited One.

  40. For those interested I have written my first match impressions in a new article. And do I need to mention that I do have a few things to say about Dean?

  41. AL,

    I’ve seen a few morons around and Persian gunner is clearly not one of those. I do think that some of his comments are borne out of frustration of the draw.

    Mike Dean was the tosser who messed us up. Also a draw to Chelsea is never a bad result. My attitude is always to move on to the next game. The people who are saddled with the responsibility of doing the analytical work are up to it.

    Let’s keep the faith and stick together in support of the team.

  42. Given this horrible display of refs I am not sure what the club high hierarchy are going to do.

    Do you think can say or do anything ?

    Absolutely shocking.
    On to the game my view is that both sets wanted the draw and they got it.

    Viera view reflects this game to me.Leader absence.The likes of Lampard where at it on Ozil from the go . Ivanovic was trying to get sent off Ozil as the replay shows that he was winking to Terry during the brawl .

  43. Persian Gunner
    Apologies for my slightly OTT response to your comments, felt you may have picked on Giroud a little unfairly. I’m thoroughly disappointed with the ref’s performance, and so is everybody on here it appears, and in the heat of the moment you can say something which when you analyze it again you realise you didn’t need to say. This is one of those moments for me, and I take back what I said. Sorry mate 🙂

  44. bjtgooner,

    “However, we are fortunate that we seem to have no leg breaks or other serious injuries after that performance.”

    That was my sentiment after the final whistle. That Mike Dean is a donkey’s ass.

  45. Bootoome
    Thank you my friend
    I just believe that if we could more combinations like what Gibbs and Rosicky did, specially on the right hand side with Theo, chel$i’s defense would collapse

  46. Ok a Chelsea perspective
    First at worse it was a yellow card for Mikel in reality both players were out of control going for the ball the irony is had the foul been given then the penalty incident, which was in the same phase of play wouldn’t have happened.
    Yes it should have been a penalty but Walcott was on his way down before the challenge so in a way he did himself no favours
    Ivanovic went in with a fairly high boot but Ozil was not up right so the foot wasn’t as high as it looked however immediately after the incident Ozil led with his head which had Ivanovic reacted could have spelt trouble.
    I thought the draw was just about fair and yes in the last 10 minutes you had a couple of chances in truth in the previous 80 you showed very little

  47. Al
    It’s ok. In my time region it’s 2:30 am and I can imagine lots of gunners all around the world who care enough about this team to be sleepless like me, and I always come here because I know how fair and reasonable all you guys are 🙂

  48. It would be a very soft penalty. Be honest with yourselves, Walcott felt a slight touch and dived.
    Ten times now and Wenger can’t do it. Mourinho once again outsmarted Wenger tactically.
    As I said on another blog before the game, I’ve seen nothing from Wenger this season to make me believe his team could beat Mourinho’s today.
    Arsenal were slow and predictable. Chelsea were more dynamic and created more chances despite playing at The Emirates.
    You chose to criticise Dean but how about the zero shots on target ? I can’t remember Cech making a good save the whole game.
    It’s clear Arsenal have big problems in the final third and having Giroud upfront doesn’t help.
    When he had his first chance I knew he would miss. So typical! If you thought otherwise, then you don’t know the difference between a clinical finisher and Giroud.
    In tough games, there are not many chances for goals and you want to have someone clinical to finish them.
    Everyone knows Giroud is a very limited striker but some people here are glad to bury their heads in the sand claiming ‘they’re happy with Giroud leading the line’.
    Yes, I bet you’re happy now. And you lot will be happier when he misses more chances (including some sitters).

  49. Thanks Persian gunner, I feel better now as I don’t usually do this and was starting to feel real bad about attacking someone who clearly doesn’t deserve that. Thank goodness you’re level headed or it could have all gone downhill over some silly misreading of a comment by me. Keep the faith Persian gunner, and may your unwavering support for the team continue, that’s what we need. together we will beat these corrupt bastards ruining our game one day 🙂

  50. Typical that yet another abysmal refereeing performance has given Arsenal fans the perfect smokescreen to avoid the fact that this team is horribly unbalanced,.completely lacking in attacking verve and is fronted by one of the worst strikers in the PL.When one sees what Martinez has done w2ith Everton in the space of a few months and compare their exciting,beautiful football with that served up by Wenger who has been here for

  51. Oops, here comes the second. Perfect timing, what can I say. One must wonder how many of these ppl have actually kicked a ball in their whole life, never mind featuring in a competitive game.

  52. Typical that yet another abysmal refereeing performance has given the same olds the excuse of just brushing it away as if it has no influence on the or a match.

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