Often Partisan

And the Games Keep Coming… 5th Rd FA Cup Review

Here are my reflections on the fifth round FA Cup match between Chelsea and Birmingham City at Stamford Bridge yesterday.

1) Could have won it, should have won it?

Today showed why it’s important that a team believes in itself, in the players that make it up and the manager that sets it up. Chelsea didn’t look up to it at all for long periods whereas Blues were actually stroking it around, and playing with an amazing amount of composure denying the division difference between the two. I think Blues were unlucky not to win it; maybe Redmond will feel he could have done a little better with his chance and even Davies could have won it in time added on at the end. Yeah, we didn’t need the extra game but it’s more revenue, it’s more exposure and it’s another stop on the crazy train ride that this season has been.

2) Morgaro Gomis

I wanted to highlight our Senegalese pocket dynamo, as I think he’s a little under-rated at times and he was outstanding yesterday. He popped up everywhere, breaking up play and then laying it off to Mutch or Fahey. He’s not an especially brilliant footballer, but he was detailed a task today and he performed it so well Chelsea were forced into changing their midfield, taking off the ineffective Jon Obi Mikel. In away games where we have a five in the middle of the pitch he’s very effective, and allows the more attacking players to have licence to get forwards.

3) Colin Doyle

The last time I remember Doyle playing at Stamford Bridge he didn’t have the best of times; but he more than made up for it this time. A penalty saved, a great save from Luiz’ free kick and some very competent handling were highlights in a composed performance. Blues are in the lucky position of having two decent keepers to call on (three if you count Butland) and it’s unlucky for Doyle that Myhill has been so reliant in the league. I’m pleased for the Irishman.

4) Adam Rooney

I know some fans didn’t think he did much – but left to plough a lone furrow up front, isolated from the midfield and having to deal with both Luiz and Cahill he gave them something to think about and held it up as best as he could. Yes, he’s not got the pace (and it hurts us sometimes), but you cannot fault his effort. He’s more of a fox in the box type striker, a goal poacher and such he was only ever going to be chasing scraps in this game, but he did it well enough.

Of course, the down side to the game is now we’ve got another; Stephen Carr has picked up a knock and our already thin squad is going to be stretched some more. On the flip side, I think Hughton bringing on Jervis shows he won’t be afraid to bring the kids into the team if it’s required and it’s more revenue, which is always good in our present condition. Blues need to take the momentum into the postponed Barnsley game at Oakwell on Tuesday, and show that these sorts of performances aren’t one offs. If we can play with the same intensity, composure and skill against the Tykes we’ll rip them a new one.

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14 Responses to “And the Games Keep Coming… 5th Rd FA Cup Review”

  • m says:

    always worth reading your posts, good for the team, management and fans getting some credit from the media and other fans:-)

  • bluesbot says:

    Gomis played really well today, efficient at breaking up the play and got in some telling tackles, felt we should have had the two wingers periodically switching flanks today, Redmond is more of a natural on the right I think he would have had some joy out of the chelsea left back.

    The much maligned fahey also played well today, was neat and tidy in posession and kept us ticking over nicely – put in a very good shift in my opinion

    If we can keep up the momentum against both barnsley and forest then that would be the 3rd month this season that we will have finished unbeaten – a fantastic feat all things considered

  • skareggae72 says:

    Looking at this display i dont think we need to fear any of the remaining fixtures,inc West Ham away.
    A bit of luck with our injured players returning,and staying fit,and its shaping up to be a surprisingly successful season,against expectations.KRO

  • Bluenosejohn says:

    Have a look at the Chelsea sites today and even better, those of their Arsenal friends and neighbours. Just shows how much attention we should pay to ‘plastic fans’ as you so aptly called them the other day when they have any comments to make about us. Good for a giggle though when anything goes against them. At least Wolves having been turned down now by Curbishley will shortly have Wegner or Villas-Boas to choose from if their current clubs fans have anything to say about it. KRO

  • Bluehobba says:

    Just read the mirror. Andy Dunne wrote an article about Torres but then goes on about the Blues and Chris Hughton and how they fully deserved everything yesterday. Even the media is starting to take notice of us.

  • I Roth says:

    The Chelsea side cost well over £200 million. The blues side that played yesterday cost around £6.
    It may be a bit more; something like £6 mill, but hey what a performance they put up, great. Even had some Villa fans praising us. Think they are jealous of our manager.

  • Leigh says:

    One swallow may not a summer make., but I think Colin DoyleN doyle more than vindicated my praise of a few weeks ago. I am not sure whether, as a club, we wnted a replay, or even progression in the overall scheme of things this year, but if we win the replay, and the draw goes in our favour, do we now fear anybody? That said if Chelsea lose to Napoli, the replay will be all they have left, and who can say what team will turn up at St Andrews.

  • Spotlight Kid says:

    @thongs: Carr remains a very solid asset when fit, as he showed in this combative peformance yesterday before annoyingly being injured again. I’m sure CH doesn’t suffer fools or wasters, so Carr will always be included in the team on merit despite the negative rumours about him creeping around.

    The current lack of punch (or counter-punch) up front whether 4-4-2 or 4-5-1 is the real concern, as a capable defence and organised midfield alone ain’t gonna win promotion no matter how many paudits CH is now (rightly) getting.

  • chris says:

    bore off, where is your evidence saying that he didn’t want to go on the trips? and premier league teams came in for him in the summer, if he wanted to move he had the chance. Just someone else making up stories again

  • BCFC FAN says:

    I think that Gomis and Mutch both work well together. The only problem for me is the defence. Spector is better than Carr and Ibanez and davies should have marked sturridge better when he scored. Caldwell>Ibanez, Spector>Carr. I agree with bluesbot Redmond is better on the right. KRO!

  • almajir says:

    I thought he was included to give Spector a rest. Jonny Specs is definitely the better right back these days

  • Eric says:

    I am wondering if Hughton will try again for Cousins who cannot join Rangers?

  • denis thwaites says:

    Terrific performance by team manager and fans yesterday. Whatever happens in the remainder of the season this has been such an enjoyable experience to see us with our backs against the wall from day one just defying the odds game after game. I was critical of the Doyler earlier in the seas0n as he looked a keeper lacking in confidence but he was terrific yesterday. Two spoons of whatever it is CH feeds them on did the trick again. Every one of the players who wore the shirt yesterday deserves great credit. Defensively and across the whole midfield they were prepared to work their socks off. Doyle Davies Murphy and Mutch for me were outstanding and the others not far behind. I think if we had a fit Zigic available yesterday we would have got a 5th manager sacked this morning. It’s hard to think we can keep going at 2 games a week and not run out of gas but I wouldn’t bet on it just yet..


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