Weekly Report: Axing Ancelotti and the Spanish World Series

by Luke Bradshaw

Thursday, April 14th, 2011

So no trophies for Ancelotti this season. He may manage to keep his job because he managed to win the double in his first season, then again, he may be shown the door because he won the double in his first season.

In truth Chelsea haven’t played well since October; whether this is Ancelotti’s fault is up for debate, but there is no escaping the fact that should he be replaced, Chelsea’s next boss will still inherit a club in desperate need of rejuvenation.

If Torres is the player this new team will be based upon then he needs a link man behind him. By the time next season kicks off Frank Lampard will be 33, and as brilliant a servant to the club as he has been in his decade at Stamford Bridge, he is not the AMC Torres thrives on.

Just as Man Utd have gone through transitions – think during Arsenal and Mourinho’s periods of success – Chelsea must do the same, but that can only come with a degree of continuity; long term consideration. By axing Ancelotti the process starts all over again. If Hiddink arrives (he wouldn’t be available till November) and he fails to win anything in his first year, then does he get sent packing to the next World Cup semi-final success with yet another nation?

Had Mourinho been left to run the team how he wanted there is nothing to suggest the club wouldn’t have experienced continued success under his tenure. This year could potentially have been his seventh year had he stayed, still less than a third the United reign of Sir Alex.

Change can be good however, look at West Brom. Still unbeaten in the league under Hodgson and virtually in the relative haven that is mid-table obscurity. One man who really did walk alone at Anfield has again proved his credentials.

Jens Lehmann is back in net for Arsenal, and although just as likely to make a howler as Almunia, his volatile mindset is far more entertaining than the Spaniard’s fragile one.

Quality goals flew in everywhere across the Prem; Neville, his Russian teammate, Kenwyne Jones, Bardsley, Daniel Sturridge (enough rejuvenating qualities…undecided).

Andy Carroll reiterated how much he loves a brace, and how dedicated he is to my fantasy team, while Raul showed how much he loves the Champions League and how dedicated he is to being its top scorer.

And as much as he irritates me, leaving Nani off the shortlist for the PFA award is scandalous. Improved his game no end with goals and assists aplenty in what has been the sometimes stuttering treble candidates (who knew there was such a thing?)

Real and Barca confirmed that they would be serving up not so much a feast, but a gluttonous mess hall of El Clasico’s – what will be the very definition of hype, and then probably live up to it. Just like the bloated play-offs in the NBA or World Series, this domestic marathon could determine the best team on the planet.  The best thing for Spurs about their matches against Real was easily Van der Vaart’s chewing gum kick-ups.

Favourite thing this week: There are passes down the line, then there are backheels, and then there is this.

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  • http://www.ukfootballfinder.co.uk Mystical Mike

    Chelsea need a mass clear out, as good as lamps, essien and drogba have been , they need to rebuild. They also have a lot of dead wood.

    Strudrige will b back next season and should start with torres.

  • http://www.ukfootballfinder.co.uk Mystical Mike

    Ps who is worse Almunia or Gomez?

  • dexylongshot

    Almunia is poor, Gomez is good but sometimes make sthe occassional mistake. I agree about a clear-out at chelsea, time is catching up and the spine is beginning to weaken, Lampard only has a couple of seasons left at this level i reckon and Essien has been poor by his usual lofty standards. The arrival of Luiz is a good start although i think he is so good, he could moved further upfield in front of a back four, he will see more of the ball, i think he has the capability to be a fantastic box to player in the mould of robson/keane, i really rate him. Torres on the other hand is out of sorts although his goals will come next season. I agree on the sturridge shout too, what ishis record, 6 in 8 or something like that, fantastic form. With the emminet departure of Drog and possible Kalou/Anelka, his time could well come, but will it work out with him and Torres both upfront?

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