The Premier League is only two games old and already there has been plenty of talking points on and off the pitch. On the pitch though however Chelsea’s bad week continued with a 3-0 mauling at the hands of Manchester City today. The Blues who won the Premier League at a canter last year struggled in their opening game against Swansea this year.
That game finished 2-2 which was disappointing in it self – but with the next game being against arch rivals Manchester City, one would have thought Chelsea would have been fired up for this one. Sadly though that wasn’t the case.
Jose Mourinho has long been hailed as a master tactician, the man who always has the right game plan for the right situation, hence the name ‘the special one’. However, Jose’s master plan back fired in this game. ‘The special one’, as he always does in the big games, was expected by many to set his team not to get beat or as some like to call it ‘park the bus’.
That tactic wasn’t going to work against this Manchester City team in this game. Fast tempo and aggressive from the out set, City were looking rampant. Maybe someone forgot to put the hand brake on ‘the bus’ that Chelsea were supposed to have parked. Such was City’s early dominance that top scorer Sergio Aguero missed two guild edged chances – that’s not something you would usually say about the little Argentine. With the season only two games old maybe Aguero’s shooting boots were in need of some WD40 to get rid of some early season rustiness in front of goal.
City need not to worry for too long about Sergio’s inability to find the goal as it was actually Sergio Aguero who grabbed the game’s first goal. The little Argentine managed to jink his way through the Chelsea defence and managed to squeeze a well placed shot under Asmir Begovic, who was deputising for the suspended Thiabut Courtouis.
That goal was no more than City deserved, in fact God only knows how the Citizen’s weren’t more than a goal to the good at half time. The interval came at the right time for Chelsea and it was of no surprise that the Blues came out for the second half with a bit more purpose – but the fact that John Terry didn’t come back out for the second half was a surprise, Kurt Zouma replaced the Chelsea captain. Despite their renewed vigour, Chelsea didn’t really make Joe Hart get his gloves dirty.
What didn’t help Chelsea’s cause on this occasion was Diego Costa and his ruthless aggression. The Spaniard who was Chelsea’s top goal scorer last year, although being involved in the game, didn’t make the desired impact because of unnecessary scraps with players like Fernandinho for example. Although Costa is a player who craves such battles, Chelsea needed their star man to focus his energy elsewhere.
City always seemed in control of this one due to the lack of quality chances that Chelsea created but, with the Blues only trailing by the single goal, Jose’s men always had a chance one would have felt. Chelsea did have one great chance when the score was 1-0 but Eden Hazard could only hit straight at Joe Hart when a yard either side would have put Chelsea back in the game. To Manuel Pellegrini’s credit, the Chilean sensed City were allowing Chelsea back in the game and made some good changes to counter that.
Keen to get one over his out spoken critic Jose Mourinho, Pellegrini sensibly decided to bring on the defensive minded Martin Demichelis. This move proved to be a master stroke as well . When this substitution happened the game was broken up by the ball going out for a corner, when play did reconvene Chelsea who also made a substitution at the same time, lost concentration and conceded a second goal courtesy of Vincent Kompany’s head.
If Chelsea thought they had a chance at 1-0 then surely at 2-0 they knew the game was up. City who won their opening game 3-0 away at Tony Pulis’ West Brom weren’t content with the 2-0 scoreline and the Citizens duly added their third goal after a mix up in the Chelsea defence.
So 3-0 it finished then at the Etihad, and maybe City have fired an early title warning to the chasing pack. That’s six goals scored and none conceded with two wins from for Manchester City, Chelsea on the other hand have only one point from their opening two games.
Well Mr Mourinho does this game have any bearing on the title race now?