I suspect there's a Chelsea fan on social media, somewhere in the world, typing away that it's good they're all but out of the Champions League. It means they can concentrate on qualifying for next season's Champions League : )
Let’s Hope We See A Game Dominated By Football & NOT Technology
Last weekend’s VAR decisions were game changers. Even neutral commentators were surprised at the decisions. But we have to move on and consign this unfortunate game to the history books and face Chelsea at Dean Court. This will be a really tough game for AFCB, but our team have won their last two home games and will have the home fans behind them. We also looked good and sharp in the first half at Burnley and with better finishing could have had two early goals.
Frank Lampard has done a good job since being installed as manager at the start of the season. There was speculation in January that Chelsea were hoping to bring some new players in now their transfer ban had been lifted. But that failed to materialise with clubs reluctant to let players go at that time of the season.
Since our meeting and win at Stamford Bridge in December, Chelsea were in fourth place, the spot they still hold going into our game. They won their next two away games against fellow London clubs, Tottenham and Arsenal. Chelsea did lose a home game in between the away games, against Southampton. They then drew at Brighton, before beating Burnley at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea then travelled up to the North East to play Newcastle United and came away without any points. The next two games both ended in draws, at home against Arsenal and away at Leicester.The next two games were at home, first losing against Manchester United, before beating Tottenham in their most recent game. This season so far Chelsea’s away record has been better than at home. They sit in fourth place in the away table, two points more and played one game less than their home record at Stamford Bridge.
AFCB’s away record against Chelsea in the Premier League is better than at Dean Court. The Cherries have beaten Chelsea once at home and that was a 4-0 win last season. Otherwise Chelsea have won three of the four games played. At Stamford Bridge AFCB have won three out of the five games, Chelsea winning the other two.
In all league games at Dean Court, AFCB have Won 2, Drawn 0, Lost 3. In all competitions, AFCB have Won 5 and Lost 10.
AFCB Team News
Hopefully the team will have Nathan Ake and Jefferson Lerma back. Otherwise except for those we know about there has been no new injuries reported from the Burnley game.
AFCB Player To Watch
Josh King, looked sharp after return from injury and unlucky to have his goal chalked off at Burnley. We have badly missed King.
Chelsea Team News
N’Golo Kante is out with a groin injury. Callum Hudson-Odoi been out with a hamstring injury.
Christian Pulisic has a groin injury. Marco van Ginkel, out with a long term anterior cruciate ligament injury. After Chelsea’s home defeat against Bayern Munich on Tuesday night, Tammy Abraham who came on as a substitute, went down injured but continued playing until the end. It seems in the post match warm down he limped off early. He may be a doubt now for Saturday.
Chelsea Player To Watch
If he plays, Tammy Abraham, 22-years-old and has made a big impression in this league, just back from injury and has 13 goals and 3 assists to his name. Experienced Olivier Giroud started in their last two games, against Spurs and Bayern Munich, he scored against Spurs and was MOM. So will be interesting who starts up front on Saturday. 21-year-old Mason Mount in midfield also had a good game against Spurs and has scored 5 goals and has 4 assists this season, another young player doing well. He also played in the Tuesday night game.
The problem is we all know that before a game kicks off there will be some sort of controversy. Saturday will be no different. I have absolutely no faith or confidence in either the on-field referee or the TV referee when it comes to making correct decisions. Both Tierney and Marriner have the capability of making mind boggling ricketts. Add to that the fact we have a self confesses Villa supporter as the referee what are we expecting .
Yep, that was basically my thinking. For the way I think we need to take the game to Chelsea, which is aggressively, King and Fraser are the much better options than someone like Wilson.
As is often quoted on here, we are a team that thrives on partnerships. Why EH thought benching the Fraser/Rico partnership for Burnley was a good idea I don't know. If he does it again for Chelsea I'm going to be furious; Ake has built up a very good partnership with Rico over the course of the season, and Smith is our best RB.
Stacey has really adapted well to this league, but he left acres of space for the Burnley wingers to get into. Plus, Rico must have been watching the 2014/15 season review DVD in pre-season, because he's the only player that even tries to find Wilson with long balls down the channel anymore.
The midfield 3 of Lerma, Billing and Gosling has been our best midfield setup by FAR this season. See absolutely no reason why we should drop it now.