Same Old Chelsea, Always Complaining in Champions League

Let me first congratulate Inter Milan on a well deserved victory in the Champions League. In both games against Chelsea, they were the better side and thoroughly deserved to go through to the quarter-finals.

As for Chelsea, the storyline involving this team in the Champions League is becoming painfully predictable. As has happened for several years running, Chelsea lacked a spark and creativity in midfield and up front. Didier Drogba got sent off again. The constant niggling tackles returned (this time by Inter Milan, too). And yet again, John Terry was up to his old tricks of getting in the referee’s face and acting like a man possessed.

When Chelsea loses in the Champions League, why does John Terry have to act like it’s always the referee’s fault and that it has nothing to do with the Blues getting outplayed again? Why not stand up, admit you were beaten by a better team and take the loss like a man, like a captain and like a role model for England?

Instead we have to endure the childish scene of Terry shouting obscenities in the face of the assistant referee when Terry ran toward the player’s tunnel. And pushing his own teammate Mikel John Obi away when Terry wanted to get in the referee’s face?

Yes, I’m sure Terry was incensed by the decision to send off Didier Drogba. And it did look to me like Thiago Motta knocked Drogba over in the penalty box, which led to the players getting tangled together and supposedly Drogba kicked out at Motta. However the angles of the video replay were poor and it was inconclusive whether Drogba should have received a red card or not.

When Chelsea plays in the Champions League, it always feels like they’re carrying a ton of baggage presumably from the pressure of needing to win the tournament to satisfy Roman Abramovich. But to me, it’s often John Terry, the captain, who sets the tone by failing to lift his players above the quagmire of arguing about fouls. If Terry focused on trying to win matches with skill and creativity, maybe Chelsea would do better in Europe.

As it was, it was Inter Milan’s Wesley Sneijder who rose up to the occasion and became the creative midfielder who thread so many dangerous balls through to Inter’s Samuel Eto’o and Diego Millito. It was Sneijder’s beautiful pass to Eto’o which led to the only goal of the match which was beautifully struck by the Cameroon striker into the back of the net.

Over the 90 minutes in this game, there were plenty of examples of test book defending by both Chelsea and Inter. Maicon, Samuel and Lucio did a sound job of taking Drogba out of the game. And Zhirkhov came into the middle of defence on several occasions to kick the ball away to safety from the attacking Internazionale players.

After the tense and uneventful first half, despite a late flurry by Chelsea, the second half opened up more thanks to Sneijder getting more into the game and Florent Malouda continuing to trouble the Inter defence with his great dribbling skills. But in both the first half and second half, the quality of skills from free kicks by both sides was absolutely appalling. I don’t think there was one free kick in the entire 90 minutes that was well taken.

Even before Inter scored the only goal of this game, Chelsea looked unlikely to score. No matter how many times they pushed forward, Inter Milan did an excellent job of blocking shots and free kicks as well as stifling any of Chelsea’s attacks. When Joe Cole came on as a substitute, you would think that he would have made a difference but he looked slow and laborious and was more successful at generating fouls than causing Internazionale any headaches.

When it came down to what the difference was in this game, Inter Milan did a much better job at defending. Goalkeeper Julio Cesar had very little to do during the 90 minutes, which is testament to the hard work by his entire team but especially his defenders in front of him who prevented Chelsea from scoring at their home ground which is no longer a fortress.

As for Chelsea, I honestly feel it’s best that the club contemplate exorcising the demons and letting John Terry go in the summer. The man breeds too much negativity and is unable to get his team playing with a confidence which is necessary if they have any hope of lifting the Champions League trophy anytime in the near future. Terry is still a good defender, but he’s not a good captain and he’s certainly not the type of leader that a club like Chelsea needs at its helm.

58 thoughts on “Same Old Chelsea, Always Complaining in Champions League”

  1. to be fair, last year Chelsea were robbed of 3 clear penalties. Until Chelsea rid their squad of Ballack, inject some creativity (Joe Cole was way off form since he never plays), and Essien stays injury free, Chelsea will never win the Champions League.

  2. lack of creativity and as usual blame referees.. well diva terry & drogba are at it again.. where is lampard.. Inter where very good actors too…

  3. Gaffer,
    I agree with you on some point but others I do not.

    Yes, Chelsea played like shite in both legs of the match up and Chelsea are an aging side that needs fixing. When ManCity was trying to get Terry last off season part of me wanted him to go so we could get younger at the back, but Terry is blue through and through and he will always be our captain. I would like hear you say that Mr. Liverpool needs to leave because he is causing to many problems. He has been having fitness problems for the past 2 seasons now and hasn’t been on the best behavior himself lately. Liverpool haven’t finished this low in the EPL since the 02-03 season do you think it is time for Stevie to go?

    1. CTBlues, absolutely I think that Steven Gerrard should leave Liverpool. He looks like a player who is not enjoying his football, is not happy with his team and is having one of his worst seasons in memory. It’s time for both Terry and Gerrard to move on.

      The Gaffer

      1. It’s nice to know that you are some what level headed Gaffer even though you’re a scoucer. Today was doubly sad for me because my second team Sevilla tumbled out of CL as well. I guess I’ll root for Bayern Munich because there is no way I will root for Barca, ManU, or the Arse.

          1. A Welsh team eh, you guys beat Cardiff this year I don’t follow the Championship? Also about Lyon no thanks not a big fan of the Frogs.

  4. I’m not ashamed to call myself a Chelsea supporter. I agree that Chelsea were outplayed and carry a lot of baggage, however I disagree with the title of this article because I did not find any nonsensical complaining by Chelsea. John Terry had the right to complain at the end of the game because of the questionable red card for Drogba. He pushed Mikel out of the way because he wanted to prevent any ideas that Chelsea players were bullying the ref. I doubt Terry was blaming the ref for the loss and was only acting like a captain. I’m sure your views are skewed because of Terry’s antics off the pitch, so he immediately has a negative reputation and everything he does is interpreted in such a way. But I don’t blame you for having your opinion. I’m only respectfully criticizing the title of your article, as if you’ve summed up the entire team as a bunch of complainers.

    Having said that, I do agree that Terry should go. I secretly wanted him to go to Man City over the summer because I felt that we needed a fresh start. Although he is a decent defender and leader on the pitch, he is creating a bad image and reputation for Chelsea. It’s not fair for the players and the club. I doubt he will leave Chelsea though, but I will once again secretly pray that he will leave.

    1. Zico, good feedback, thanks. But Terry’s antics in his personal life didn’t come into the equation for me. I rather let the football do the talking on the pitch, but the way he handled himself was an embarrassment to him, Chelsea FC and English football in general. Yes, Terry was the chief complainer this evening, but there have been plenty of other complainers in the past for the Blues who have encircled the referee to intimidate him.

      The Gaffer

      1. True, other Chelsea players have complained in the past. Perhaps following JT’s lead haha. I am happy that Drogba took his red card like a professional and walked off without cursing at the camera haha. *sigh* Maybe Chelsea will have a different look in a couple years.

    2. Terry is one of the biggest babies in all of England…. Some role Model he has turned into!

      Either his personal life or him constantly getting of Refs faces for calls he thinks he deserves….. What a sad act he his displayed over the last few years…..I was guessing during the match today … that afterwords he would get lots of camera time… while crying about calls he didn’t get….and I was right …… I hope his melt down continues into the Rest of the EPL season and into the World Cup.

      So long Chelsea nice to see you leave the big tournament early!

      1. Cord4Gooner: You summed up the selfish glory hound very successfully. Well done. Chelsea will never get a fraction of the #40M that Man City offered. And just imagine how much like highway robbery it would have looked now had they pulled the trigger on that deal.

        There are a lot of chants about buying players, but not history or class. Chelsea prove that time and time again.

        But before we give too much credit to Inter (cheers to you Gaffer, you pointed out their shortcomings), don’t forget; it was their main man, the ultimate “me first” personality in football, who let JT become the me-before-team monster he is today.

  5. Since when is Rugby Tackling in the penalty box been acceptable..I’m looking in the rule book, but for the life of me I can’t find were it says it allowed!!!!any supporter let alone a player would get hot under the collar! Good enough reason why JT haggles the ref and justified too! Even Graham Poll had the decency to come to Chelseas defence with the obvious failing of the Ref! It’s a funny old game…answer this one then….How many teams have looked like losing and still won? … reminds me of Arsens Speech the other week when they lost to Chelsea!

    1. Sauxboy, rugby tackling should not be allowed and Chelsea definitely deserved a penalty for one of those two rugby tackle incidents.

      As for Inter, they were deserved winners tonight. But neither team looked like they had the skill to win a Champions League trophy based on their performances this evening.

      The Gaffer

  6. Are you really surprised by anything Terry does these days? The man has proved time and time again that he’s nothing more than white trash. Pissing in nightclubs, screwing awestruck fans in cars, laughing about 9/11 to American tourists the day of (or after), and betraying his best friend and family. He’s never learned from his mistakes and keeps acting without regard to anyone but himself.

  7. anybody think european football is becoming more even competition? we now only have 2 english clubs and saw some surprising teams such as lyon and cska moskow. perhaps that topic is intended for another article or website.

    1. TSO, I wouldn’t be surprised if that topic comes up for discussion on tonight’s EPL Talk Podcast which will review the Champions League match in more detail.

      The Gaffer

    2. I don’t think it is anything out of ordinary. Lyon is a very good team and they are not strangers to the later stages of CL. Having 1-2 odd teams in quarterfinals is not unheard of either. As for english team domination last 2-3 seasons they benefited greatly from the downturn in Italian soccer. Typically it would be Milan and Juventus taking spots in quarterfinals with at least one of them getting into semis. In this season english teams are a somewhat weaker and other teams picked up the slack.

    1. Drogba got sent off in May 2008 during the Champions League Final. And last season he delivered that ugly rant against referee Ovrebo in front of the TV cameras.

      The Gaffer

  8. “take the loss like a man, like a captain and like a role model for England?”
    oh wait…John Terry a role model..gimme a break..anyone who knows vulgar English soccer knows what that means!
    Captain..oh wait, i think he was stripped off the big one few weeks it’s obvious he is not one in any level unless loud-mouthing and shouting is what is required of the captain.
    And acting like a man..i don’t even want to comment on that!

  9. Chelsea and Man City’s seasons so far just prove that money doesnt make a club a champion. Look at a team like Aston Villa, who spend so little compared to Chelsea, Man City, and can make the champions league next year. Chelsea should invest in youth like Arsenal and Aston Villa because I think investing in youth will help Chelsea succeed in the future. Instead of buying footballers for hire, they should buy footballers that will grow with the club. Chelsea have had so many different top class managers and have faced the same result. So I think rethinking their transfer policy is the only solution.

  10. WHAT?:

    That actually reinforces Arseblog Reader’s point. Another year, another year without any youth close to the picture. an old team getting older, relying on the likes of Michael Ballack (another selfish git, as evidenced by his red card v. Man. City) to drag them through a season.

  11. Though it is two and half years since Mourinho left Chelsea is still his team. Most players were handpicked by him and team plays the same football instilled by Mourinho. This is Mourinhno’s creation and it can and will only respond to him. Therefore it should not come as a surprise that other managers failed to get the same kind response that brought two EPL titles. In order to be successful Chelsea needs to re-build. But it is easier said than done. Any Chelsea manager will be under tremendous pressure to get immediate result and will be very reluctant to dismantle one of the best line ups in the world soccer.

    1. Dismantling line-ups is what great managers do. Ask Sir Alex.

      I think that Mourinho’s departure was a blessing for him. He might think that he could have kept the egos in check, but I suspect not. The qualities that got him results for 2 years are what have led to a self destructive streak ever since. Even when Mourinho was there, there was rumour that John Terry (surprised?) was sticking the knife in his back.

      In the end, the best thing that could have happened to Mourinho’s reputation was to be far, far away as it (unavoidably) started crumbling down.

  12. There shouldn’t be any complaints or anything negative to diminish or tarnish a great victory. Chelsea are a great team but the truth of the matter is over the 2 legs Inter Milan were many magnitudes better controlling the flow of play and doing a lot with little possession.

    Inter Milan are a very very good team and I think they will contend for the Champions League title with United and Barca this year. Either way its a bad result for Chelsea going out at this stage but you cant hold it against them they played a better team and got beat.

    BTW the footnote on John Terry. I couldn’t agree more. JT is a good defender but a leader is supposed to set a good example. I don’t think JT is an position to set a good example they should let him go.

    1. Drogba clearly stamps on Motta’s ankle. Clear red card. John Terry swears repeatedly at the 4th offical and berates team mates for shaking the hands of the officials.
      English commentators ingnored Chelsea’s fouling and diving, only focussing on Inter Milan.

      Yet Chelsea couldn’t score in open play and that is the problem they have at the top level of European competition. Along with being unable to intimidate officials as easily as they do in England, this side needs serious work on it if it wants to win the Champions League.

      I hope Mr Abramovic is ready to spend, spend, spend!!!

  13. Chelsea captain has no authoritative character. John Terry and Drogba was always just blame the referee for their inability to win games. Of the entire game, I rate Chelsea did not deserve to escape into the quarter-finals. Congratulation Inter Milan.

  14. JT’s behavior reminds of another poor loser, Wenger.
    Cant stand people who cant accept that they were beaten.
    Not the refs fault, not I didnt see zhat, bollox.
    The other team were better today!

  15. I must agree that Inter was the better side and that they deserved to win. However, your title makes it sound like Inter played a clean and fair game. There were easily 2 penalties NOT called in the 1t half for Chelsea. Drogba was taken down in the box that would make an NFL linebacker jealous. Can you tell me that is not a foul in soccer any more?

    The point I am trying to make is that there is some sort of curse or unwritten rule in Champions league to not give calls to Chelsea. Last year’s barcelona game was a prime example. Should either of the two penalty’s been called in the first half, this game would have been very different.

    1. Yet, Chelsea can’t seem to score at home in open play. Drogba went down like he’d been shot. Terry elbowed Milito and should have gone.

      Why is it always the officials fault when Chelsea lose??

    2. Yes the penalties were not called, but there’s no curse against Chelsea. Referees rarely if ever give penalties for shirt tugging or blatant tackling in the box on a corner kick. It happens to everyone, but I’m sure JT would agree with you.

  16. I think Jose Mourinho gets as much oral satisfaction (BJs) from the media as Tim Tebow does.

    Jose was a disgruntled employee while at Chelsea. Can’t imagine he’d have made an American Express commercial (shown in the US) if he had not been coaching there.

    From the 65th minute on Inter seriously outplayed Chelsea. There was no creativity or possession when it mattered.

    As far anyone that has a footballer for a role model… I have pity on you. I might respect their game, ability, fitness, but these players are far from role models. Pick a top athlete in almost any sport… they are all spoiled and have extra-marital affairs.

    1. Thank you. Finally someone brings up the idea that professional athletes are NOT responsible for being good role models. If they are seen as role models by some people, sorry but they are not obligated to act in a manner that suites you.

      1. the way i see it, its ok for high profile athletes to be your role model, but they should be a role model for … your ROLE on the field not for your morals. This is the same flaw that all these parents are putting on Tiger Woods, we know its wrong to cheat on your wife but what Tiger does off the golf-course, or Terry off the pitch, or (a while back) Kobe off the court, doesn’t need to be reported. What, just because their famous they are not allowed to have private lives? Shouldn’t we put all cheaters on national blast?

        STOP USING ATHLETES AS YOUR MORAL ROLE MODLES, you should use more noble people… like politicians lol.

    2. Well said. If we use athletes, especially high-paid footballers as our role models, then that shows us how sad we are as a society. I like Chelsea, but I couldn’t give a toss about what they do off the pitch as long as it’s legal. Of course we can all wish that our favorite club’s players were all classy people like Shane Battier or David Robinson, but that ain’t gonna happen. Oh well, my team is captained by someone I’d hate to have as a son-in-law. He won’t be there forever, and our future captain likely won’t be worse than this. I’m still Chelsea blue, our team deservedly lost, haters need to quit sh*tting on Chelsea, Chelsea fans need to quit complaining, so let’s start talking about actual football and move on… there’s still plenty of football to enjoy.

  17. I am not sure Maurinho entirely outclassed Ancelotti as Chelsea probably deserved a draw in the first game. That said last night Chelsea started okay but were dreadful second half and Inter could have had more. I havent seen Chelsea bossed in that way since Liverpool battered them at the Bridge over a year ago.
    Walter Samuel though is a cheat, how the hell he gets away with that behaviour in the box repeatedly is beyond me. Drogba also can feel a bit hard done by but as he is one of the worst cheats ever to appear in England all i could do was laugh. Its opened up the tourney a lot with the merc teams going out so early. Football is the winner.
    Someone above said Chelsea cant by history and class and its again been proven. Terry is a nasty piece of work. My favourite is how the Chelsea fans seem to love him after he almost left them this year and claims he never wanted to … cough.

  18. Fair play to Inter: they were outstanding. I worried about Sneijder going into this tie, and he was indeed the difference, but Inter’s back four were outstanding too.

    However, let’s not overpraise Inter’s dominance in a match in which they needed only a draw. Chelsea had a strong period of attacking from the half-hour mark until halftime and were unlucky not to have scored. Inter deserved some of that luck with some excellent blocks and especially the last-second toe-poke away from Lampard as he bore down on goal.

    But it’s easier to play for a draw than to play for a win; waiting for the counterattack is easier than to try to open up play. Inter’s play had a lot of similarities to Chelsea’s first-leg performance versus Barça at Camp Nou in 2009, yet Chelsea got no plaudits for that result.

    Zico’s first paragraph is right on: Gaffer’s title is seriously misleading. Terry had a legitimate point re: Drogba’s red. He made the point, kept Obi Mikel out of the argument, and then left peacefully. It’s not credible to link this event to last year’s debacle–of refereeing AND of sportsmanship–by characterizing this one as “Same Old Chelsea, Always Complaining.”

    1. John Terry, who as he left field screamed in the 4th officials face three times “It’s the same every f******* year”.

      Yes John, you don’t win and whining cheats never win either.

  19. As an interesting thought exercise, what if John Terrry had in fact gone to Man City. With the fall out from the Bridge incident, what would have happened if those two had been in the same dressing room?

  20. Getting rid of John Terry is not the answer to Chelsea’s problems. In fact I would argue his leadership and presence in the back is the rock of the team year in and year out. The types of players who need to shown the door are Ballack, Kalou, Cole, Malouda etc. It’s time to bring some match winning width out on the pitch, sadly Cole hasn’t been up to challenge and I dream to see Robben and Ribery racing up the pitch in Chelsea blue. That’s where Chelsea can improve; the backline is the sturdiest aspect of the Blues.

    1. Dyslecix,
      Robben used to wear Chelsea blue but they sold him Real Madrid. My guess was he got hurt every season he was with the club. With 20/20 hindsight we shouldn’t have sold him.

  21. Robben was already in Chelsea blue, Dyslecix. Wasnt it St. Jose that ran him off? I wouldnt mind if he came back, but at this point, perhaps someone younger and just as gifted? Why cant Roman pry another Russian out of his homeland? Arshavin would have made a nice addition.

    Was it me or did Chelsea seem to fire on all cylinders while players were out at the African Cup? Anelka played very well. Hopefully upper management will recall the team’s performance and show Drogba the door when he whines again this summer.

    Joe Cole plays a little bit like Dennis Wise played. A touch wreckless, but full of headstrong steam. If healthy and a fixture in the starting line up, I think he can still perform. Would hate to seem him leave.

    Chelsea tried the “width” game but SWP couldnt find the net.

    Why was Drogba taking so many of the spot kicks yesterday? I thought that was Lampard’s responsibility? And as for Alex… if I wanted a 3-point field goal, I would have lined up differently.

    Someone please add Petr Cech to the out-going list. Since his head injury he’s gathered a bit of dust on his balls and is a bit too fearful of challenges.

    1. We need to say good bye to Ballack, Anelka, Kalou, and possibly even Drogba. Get Kakuta in there with Sturridge and try and bring in Aguero, up front. Bosingwa, Alex, Ivanivic, A. Cole in the back. Essien, Lampard, Ribery, and maybe Mikel in midfield. Finally I would love to have Joe Hart in goal but I doubt ManCity will sell him to us.

  22. First off Inter beat us and I accept this however Chelsea will be back and still can win the league and the FA Cup this year. Chelsea will be active this summer so don’t count the Blues out just yet for next year.

  23. Chelsea are a team with a great back four, but no creativity on offense. They play great when they get the first goal, but they are not a good come from behind team. Lampard is a great player, but he is very different from a player like Fabregas or Sneijder. He plays good simple passes, some through balls, but does not provide the creative passes that the latter two can. If Essien is healthy he is a good compliment to Lampard, but Mikel just isn’t Essien. You can’t beat one of the top teams in Europe when you can’t create many chances, and you certainly can’t beat the top teams when you don’t take the chance you do manage to create.

    1. Great back four? They started the game with Alex, Ivanovic, Zhirkov & an out of form Terry-hardly a great back four. I know that there are some injury problems, but every team has injury problems this time of year. In my opinion, Chelski’s form is the result of multiple factors-an aging side, Ballack having a negative net impact, injuries-especially Essien, the Terry sized hole in the back line and a apparently undermined coach.

      Of all of the pregame talking points, Turnbull ended up having a good game.

  24. To me, the thing that Chelsea are really lacking is, and not to play out that stupid series of Zidane F50i commercials, a spark in the squad. All of the teams in the last eight have them: Sneijder, Gourcuff, Fabregas, Robben, Messi et all of Barcelona’s midfield…I could go on. They lack the either striker or midfielder who can get into those tight spaces, outpace players, remain positive, weave in a killer pass, or finish no matter how brilliantly or scrappily. I am a Blue, but I really hope that Carlo signs some sort of cohesive playmaker who can change the complexion of a game, it seems like we just haven’t got that spark of creativity these past few weeks.

  25. I love all the comments by the Scouser Fred. I think you said something about history even…hahaha…when that’s all you’ve got, I guess that’s all you can talk about. Good luck in your hunt for a league title this year…i mean champions league…i mean fa cup…i mean carling cup…i mean..wait..aren’t you even about to be out of the Europa Cup? Ha. Stuck in the 80’s.

    As to the story itself. As a Chelsea fan, I do not condone what happens after the game and I wish my captain would realize that no matter how much he screams for something after the game, it isn’t going to change anything, and it’s only going to make himself look bad. As for the game, Inter defenders made several amazing blocks on sure Chelsea goals. But really we didn’t seem to play that well together. There was a point where 3 Chelsea players had the ball standing around each other because they didn’t know who to go to or who was going to make a run and in turn gave the ball up.

    But give it up to Inter, they hit the ground every chance they got and really gave it some extra rolls for effect. Pretty impressive Best Picture performance.

    On we go towards hopefully a double this year.

    Win or lose. Up the Blues.

  26. Sorry my post wan’t very good…Obviously Robben played at Chelsea in the past, but it’s a player like him running up the pitching with Ribery that I dream of. Hell, bring him back that would work for me…although unlikely. if I remember correctly he ran himself off with the help of his agent….errr…dad. He had a Gallas moment and no longer wanted to play for the blues for whatever reason.

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