Brendan Rodgers takes aim at Chelsea's approach to games. Do you agree?
Brendan Rodgers made a comment at the weekend aimed at Chelsea and I wondered what YOU the Chelsea fan reading his quote feels about it. ...
Brendan Rodgers made a comment at the weekend aimed at Chelsea and I wondered what YOU the Chelsea fan reading his quote feels about it.
Rodgers was asked to compare the way his Liverpool side plays and their philosophy compared to Chelsea's and he said:
"I worry always to play good football. I'm not one who is totally satisfied to always just grind out results. It is about winning and that's what professional sport is about at this level. But for us I will always concentrate on performance because I think that the consequence of performing well consistently is getting results and this season we've shown that. We've shown that when we play well we get the win."
I agree with Rodgers that the ultimate goal for any football club is to play attractive football, to perform and deliver results week in, week out. The problem Rodgers has, as with any other manager, is that it simply doesn't happen on a consistent basis week in, week out over a thirty eight game season!
Rodgers needs to realise that football is a results business now and more than ever before. Managers such as Sir Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger are a rarity these days because of the demands of the game.
You only have to look at David Moyes now and the situation he finds himself in at the moment. Not only that, but Manchester United as a football club because if they miss out on Champions League Football it would mean disaster for their revenues. If they were to also miss out on qualification for the Europa League, the repercussions would be huge!
Moyes has been told he will be given time to succeed at United but if the above happens, you would have to question United's commitment to that statement.
Just look at the pressure and constant scrutiny Moyes has been and remains put under. Why? Results and that's what this whole situation comes down to.
Ever since the money men came into football and the TV deals have become bigger and bigger, the pressure in the game is now immense. You are brought into a club to manage/coach the team and will be judged on your results from that moment on. That's no matter what reputation you bring with you beforehand. Just ask Andre Villas-Boas!
In saying that, sitting on a payoff of around £15m after being sacked twice in recent seasons may have hampered his reputation but long term, he is set up for life!
Villas-Boas is the perfect example of just how much results mean to a football club in this day and age. Look at how many managers have lost their jobs this season already and not given time to turn things around. Fulham have had three different managers in the space of three months for god sake!
So, this leads me to Chelsea and my response to Rodgers stating that he wouldn't be happy to grind out results. I personally think that this is total bollocks because as we have seen many times, the situation can change in an instant.
Jose Mourinho has proven himself to be a master tactician over the years and knows exactly what it takes to win football matches. You only have to look at our record in the Premier League against our main title rivals this season and we are unbeaten. In fact, Chelsea are now unbeaten in their last twelve Premier League games with our last defeat being at Stoke away on 7th December.
Now I'm not saying that in all of those games we played well enough to win or to dig out a result but it's important to remember that when we haven't, we still have not lost and picked up what could turn out to be important points.
I think at times the criticism Chelsea receive for the way they set up is uncalled for. For example, Manchester City away a few weeks ago in the Premier League. We all saw the team named by Mourinho, we saw Oscar dropped to the bench and Luiz starting next to Matic in midfield.
Everyone thought we had set ourselves up defensively but the game proved exactly the opposite. Chelsea dominated the game, won it 1-0 but also hit the post three times. Chelsea proved to be a major threat to City every single time we had the ball in attacking areas. Even the other day Eden Hazard spoke openly and admitted that Jose Mourinho had instructed him to forget defending and to attack all game!
The point I am trying to make here is that I wouldn't call that performance grinding out a result but I do understand games that we have done.
The different between Chelsea under Mourinho from the last two seasons is there for all to see. Chelsea finished 25 points and 15 points behind the eventual winners of the League so making sure we do not lose games as become just as important as winning. Chelsea now sit top of the Premier League as a consequence of our results.
Chelsea make the trip to Galatasaray tomorrow night and sitting here right now, I would bite your hand off for a 1-0 Chelsea win. If that means we set up defensively and look to hit them just once on the counter attack or via a set piece then so be it. If it means that the first leg plays a huge part in Chelsea going through to the next round, what would be wrong in that?
The Brendan Rogers approach seems to be similar to Kevin Keegan at Newcastle with the mentality of attack and nothing else. You score one, we will score two and we all know where that got him! I am sure that if you asked Liverpool fans from now until the end of the season if the result is all important and if they would accept their team grinding out a result now and again?
Chelsea fans have seen a succession of managers come and go in the last ten years or so for one reason, results. We didn't agree with every single decision that was made but we understood that football is based on results.
This time last season we had to sit from afar and watch the Champions League being played out as holders knowing that we had failed to qualify, settling for the Europa League. That was hard to take despite winning it. Famously, Jose Mourinho has stated that Chelsea do not want to be a Europa League team and we all agree 100%.
I personally, have no problem at all with us grinding out results when we are not playing well and I wondered how YOU reading this article feels about the criticism aimed at us by Rodgers?
After everything we have been through to where we are now sitting at the top of the Premier League and with a decent draw in the Champions League, I have no complaints with our style this season.