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About jones

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  • Birthday 05/05/1986

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    Chelsea FC
  1. Stoke City 0 Chelsea 4

    Cahill vs Rudiger, big call for Conte but think he will go with experience considering the opposition. Fabregas vs Bakayoko, if Hazard does not start I feel pretty certain Cesc will start. Whether that is at the expense of Baka or Pedro, is hard to say. Think we need the presence of Baka on this, and Pedro has not been his usual self so far this season. Hazard to get at least 30 mins as a sub, and then for sure start against Atletico.
  2. Chelsea 5 Nottingham Forest 1

    Almost. I would give Kanté a rest and use Cesc instead. Usually the problems in these games are related to opening up tight defenses, so it makes sense from that perspective also. Shame Drinkwater is injured. Think clarke-salter is an outsider to start, although neither of Cahill, Rudiger and Christensen is in need of a rest.
  3. Chelsea 6 FK Qarabag 0

    Lovely with a 6 goal thrashing to continue our confident form. Apart from the first 45 minutes of the season, we have started in impressive fashion. Zappacosta is the real deal. Totally comfortable in his position, honest, hard-working and, today at least, lived up to his reputation of being influential in the final third. That goal - wow! He is not and will never be a world-class player, but I think he can prove to be a very, very good signing for us. MotM. Christensen looking solid yet again, will hopefully continue to improve as he looks set to be involved quite a lot this season. Always nice to see Azpi score also, and pleased for Bakayoko to open his account - it doesn't get much scrappier than that. Willian silky as always. Bathshuayi on the other than hand had a shocker, despite the fact he got two easy goals at the end. His movement was awful all night, and judging by tonight he has never been further away from leading our line. The reason Morata could not come on, and he looked quite pissed, is because Conte was desperate for his second striker to gain some kind of positive experience. He ended on a high, yes, but for me this game was the nail in coffin for my hope that he will ever turn in to a good player for us. If Conte stays beyond the summer, I can't see how Batshuayi will. He has had a year to try and adapt to 3-4-3, and he looks as clueless now as he did the day he arrived. Top fella and good footballer, but will never be able to lead the line alone for a top club. Hazard sadly seems to be some way off full fitness, appeared to be a player in the middle of pre-season today. On the bench again against Arsenal for sure.
  4. Leicester City 1 Chelsea 2

    I actually think the next month is not as tough as some try to make it out to be: Full strength but with a more defensive outlook against Leicester: Courtois - Azpi, Luiz, Rüdiger - Moses, Bakayoko, Kanté, Alonso - Pedro, Morata, Willian Five changes against Qarabag but still a vastly superior XI: Courtois - Azpi, Luiz, Cahill - Zappacosta, Fabregas, Kanté, Alonso - Pedro, Batshuayi, Hazard We then have five days before Arsenal, so fitness should not be an issue for anyone then. In the following league cup tie against Forest, we can field a full second string XI that should beat any CH team with ease: Caballero - Clarke-Salter, Christensen, Cahill - Zappacosta, Fabregas, Drinkwater, Kenedy - Pedro, Batshuayi, Musonda. We then have three tough games against Stoke, Atletico and City, but we have 15 players for 10 positions that can be rotated without much of a drop in quality, so everyone can get a rest if needed.
  5. Squad Status: 2017/2018 Season

    Shocked (not surprised) how negative some "supporters" are. We have upgraded at CB, WB and CM with players way better suited to playing Conte's football. We have kept Hazard and not even City has better quality in AM than us, even if we failed to upgrade depth there. We may have lost x-factor in attack, but instead of getting the unplayable monster on form that is massively under-performing when not, we have a reliable and dependable CF that is going to score regardless. It is something else for sure, but I honestly believe it will be better. It is true that we did not sign Verratti, Neymar or Lukaku. But we have made significant improvements on the squad that easily ran away with the PL title last year. We are good.
  6. Transfer Talk Topic

    I whole-heartedly disagree with you doomsday prophets. I hear your arguments, but fail to understand them. Are you not supporters? Do you really think we are not going to compete after Conte has spent almost 200mp solely on players he wanted and that fits his philosophy? We are the champions, and are in great physical condition after an intense pre-season. We did not have the perfect transfer window, but we did not do too bad overall - we look a lot better than what we did both 12 and 2 months ago, when we lifted the PL trophy. Our first xi is at least similar and probably (will be) better, and quality and depth in the squad is significantly higher. We have shaken off the 45 min catastrophe against Burnley, and bounced back with 6-1 in GD, including a win away to Spurs. Our best player is returning for our next PL match. None of our summer signings have started firing yet, but all of Morata, Rudiger and Bakayoko looks very promising, and chance is that Drinkwater and Zappacosta are exactly the kind of smart buys Conte proved with Luiz and Alonso last season. We are the team in the league that best utilises the formation that everyone else tries to copy. And we have the best manager. Just like last year, pressure is on the Manchester teams. It is going to serve us well. Yes, we don't have the best first xi nor the best squad. But we didn't last year. And there is so much more to it than that. As everyone should know by now.
  7. Transfer Talk Topic

    We know that Mourinho used to convince players into joining the club (Zouma and Fabregas have both shared that for instance), so it would be strange if the club suddenly did not want to involve the manager in that process. One thing that recognises Conte, is that he only wants players that are 100 % committed to the team. If the goal is to persuade a player to join you go with the "I am going to build my team around you, you are guaranteed to play", but that may backfire when things eventually don't work out that way. Another way is to be brutally honest and say "you have the abilities I am looking for in my team and I think you can be great, but you must work hard and prove that you should play just like everyone else". You might miss out on a few, but the player is way more likely to act and respond in the way the manager wants. Not saying that's neseccarily why we missed out on Chamberlain, Llorente, Barkley etc, but it would not surprise me if that was the case either. And if it was, I honestly prefer someone with a clear vision like Conte. Even if it means missing out on a few.
  8. Official: Chelsea sign Danny Drinkwater

    The most under-rated signing of this window. Excellent addition to the squad.
  9. Official: Loic Remy Departs.

    Going to be sorely missed.
  10. Squad Status: 2017/2018 Season

    Ivanovic was replaced by Aké in the squad, and clearly Zappacosta is a better WB than both Aké and Ivanovic. Mikel did not feature all season and is pointless to involve in this discussion. Yes, Christensen is a much better option today than JT, who is struggling for Villa in the CH is. I have always been a big fan of Costa, he is world class on his day. But even if Morata never turns out to reach the extreme highs that Costa once in a while showed us, I think Morata brings tactical dependability and a more team oriented approach that Costa never gave us. They are two different players and it is a trade off in terms of qualities. We lose x-factor but get dependability. By no means is Morata << Costa. Chance is, Morata is going to score around 20 PL goals and contribute a lot to the team. And that is exactly what Costa has done in his two good seasons for us.
  11. Leicester City 1 Chelsea 2

    Yeah, think Conte would prefer defensive stability from the start in this. Leicester look better now, and it will be a lot tougher than the easy points we picked up last year. Looking forward to having a bench full of first team players, and hopefully see Zappacosta make his debut.
  12. Squad Status: 2017/2018 Season

    Bakayoko = Matic (but a better fit to Conte's system) Morata = Costa (less x-factor but better tactically and more of a team player - time will show if it is an upgrade or not) Rüdiger > Zouma Zappacosta > Aké Drinkwater > Chalobah Caballero > Begovic Christensen > JT Musonda > nobody Kenedy > nobody To say we have not strengthened in this window is crazy. It was not as good as I hoped, but our squad is significantly stronger. I would have liked us to improve the first XI, which of course Morata, Bakayoko and Zappacosta all may prove to do, but that is too soon to say. I am less concerned about the lack of numbers people are referring to. We will be more than fine in a normal season, but if we have an unlucky season with injuries it may cost us.
  13. Squad Status: 2017/2018 Season

    My assessment of the squad and how I rate both quality and depth (against last year's squad). GK: Courtois, Caballero, Eduardo. 5.0 (5.0) Our #1 is top 3 GK in the world, and we have solid and experienced cover. CB: Luiz, Cahill, Rüdiger, Azpi, Christensen. 4.5 (4.0) Best defence in the league last year strengthened with complete defenders that perhaps lack experience but adds real competition for places where there was no competition last year. Drawback: none of them are world-class, except for perhaps Luiz when he plays in the central position. WB: Alonso, Moses, Zappacosta, Kenedy. 4.0 (3.5) We won the league with two of them, who despite their good efforts have clear limitations. We now have two WBs for each position, but we lack the quality needed to go all the way. CM: Kanté, Bakayoko, Fabregas, Drinkwater. 4.5 (4.0) Despite what some people say, we have upgraded in CM. Bakayoko will outperform Matic when he gets going, although expect it to take a couple of months. Drinkwater is an upgrade on Chalobah, without a doubt. AM: Hazard, Pedro, Willian, Musonda. 4.5 (4.5) Nothing new, except the exciting prospect from the Academy. Will surprise everyone if he pulls more strings than the odd Cup game and late sub appearance. Gives us more depth, but with the extra games this year, status quo. CF: Morata, Batshuayi. 4.0 (4.0) Morata has started well and is class. But he is replacing a player that was world-class at his best. Batshuayi has improved over the last few months, but there is little to suggest there is an overall improvement in either quality or depth here. Overall: Improved depth in defence and wing backs, but our first XI remains the same. Squad is light, but we are not going to be massively affected by that unless we are very unfortunate with injuries. Our biggest issue is we failed to upgrade the most pressing areas in the first XI, although we replaced to players Conte did not want with players he highly coveted. Our biggest achievement is increasing the quality of players 13-17 from last year. How much that will affect us overall with the added pressure of CL games remains to be seen, and the summer of bad publicity and late transfer dealings has already seen us drop vital points. 26.5 (25.0) An upgrade on last year, but still a missed opportunity. The summer of what could have been. It is not going to be a 2015/16 de ja vu though, and I am expecting 3rd in the PL behind Manchester and a CL semi-final.
  14. Transfer Talk Topic

    Zappacosta done.
  15. Transfer Talk Topic

    Pretty much. I did not want him because he is dumb as ****. But to turn down a move to the Champions, during your medical, I did not know he was that dumb!