First pre-season defeat. Young and inexperienced Chelsea team. Haven’t played enough together as a team. Haven’t quite settled on the formation or the first choice eleven. Against one of the best teams in the world. Against a well established and settled team with a strong core. Against the best player in the world. Great learning experience.
The streams were very unstable. Couldn’t really follow the game as much as I wanted to. Couldn’t get much of the second half. Had to catch up on audio commentary and video highlights. There were key points from the game today.
Need more playing time: This Chelsea team needs a lot playing time. The players were all fit and ready but they just couldn’t match Real Madrid in their experience. Remember, we’ve got one player coming from West Brom, one from Leverkusen, me from Werder Bremen, one from Real Madrid, one from Vitesse. They all need more time to play by the Chelsea methods and tactics. Interestingly some of these (like Ginkel, KdB and Schurrle) have also started taking key positions in the starting eleven. That means they are going to gain that Chelsea experience at some cost.
Need more playing time together: Chelsea players, understandably, didn’t link up intuitively like Real Madrid players did. We haven’t quite understood the patterns of on the ball and off the ball movements of our colleagues. Only against a team of Real Madrid’s quality I saw Chelsea suddenly operating like a bunch of individuals. Under the immense pressure put by Real Madrid, you could see how the Chelsea players trusted their awareness of the colleagues and their movements and abilities. Anyway, this will also improve with time.
Lack of attacking threat: Lukaku was invisible. We couldn’t get Hazard involved in the game. Lampard shouldn’t have been playing. Oscar ended up filling in for Lampard and tried to play the number 10 role too. Finally, we ended not threatening Real Madrid when we had the ball. The attacks weren’t fluid. Probably there was some fear. We didn’t commit players when there were opportunities. We were a bit too cautious. Understandable when your opponent can be devastating with every single counterattacking opportunity. We couldn’t really force ourselves. This is where there’s a good case for Wayne Rooney.
Defence was worrying: our defence had Terry, Cahill, Ivanovic, Cole and Cech in goal. This is a well gelled and drilled defensive unit. There’s no youth or inexperience about it. Marcelo should never have been allowed that shot. Our defence gave him so much space and time and so close to the box and allowed to take a shot with his left foot. Poor. For Ronaldo’s second goal, no Chelsea player moved. The static defence was just watching Isco whip the ball and was watching Ronaldo blast a header. Nobody moved. Not good enough. I can understand if Chelsea had struggled to score because of the new additions. To concede three goals with this this defence was not a great story.
This is what I wrote in the comments section (only this week):
As much as I’ve grown to like Cahill, I would say he is not a defender I would fully trust. He’s got good reflexes to defend inside the box. But outside the box, he’s easily beaten. He doesn’t read the game well enough to quickly spot the slowly emerging danger. If I’m defending a lead and in the last 5 mins if I make a sub to protect the lead, I’d send Cahill in. More heart than technique.
Now, watch the Marcelo goal again.
Jose Mourinho on Ronaldo’s goals:
He’s a great player and has scored goals all his life. When he scores it’s not big news, when he doesn’t it is, but we made two mistakes for both goals. For the first, we gave away a free-kick in a position where he’s happy to have it and then the second goal, I told the players with every cross he likes to try to get into space because he’s good in the air.
Ramires’ position: Ramires on the right midfield is a very different player. He’s a constant threat and he has very unique combination of abilities in attack and defence. I remember writing a year back that the biggest loser of the 4-2-3-1 formation would be Ramires. And this is proved time and again and today. Sometimes when he makes runs like that it’s strangely so impossible to stop him without a red card foul. As I tweeted, that Ramires burst past (and through) the defenders was Ronaldoesque. I mean the real Ronaldo. And his finish – pure magic.
I know what your saying. It’s only pre-season. It’s pre-season for Real Madrid too. Let’s be honest. It was not like there was nothing at stake. Of course, we wanted to win this game. A win today would have meant a lot. But this defeat now also means a lot as it exposes some of our areas of concerns allows us to take them seriously and work on them before the season begins. Meanwhile, congratulations to Real Madrid though. They won La Preseama. Good show.
Jose Mourinho on the result today:
For me, it’s perfect we made mistakes so that we have them to work on. As I said last week, we had five victories in pre-season and zero points. Now we have five victories and one defeat, we still have zero points, it’s not a drama. They play in La Liga, we play in the Premier League, if we meet them in the Champions League and lose it’s a different story but a summer tournament is a summer tournament.
I came here to analyse my team, I’m so happy with the mistakes we made and I’m happy with the good things we did. We came to the US searching for good matches; we had Inter, AC, Real Madrid and Roma. We had the matches we wanted so much and needed so much.
For all the youth and inexperience, let’s not forget that this team beat Inter Milan and AC Milan quite comfortably. We are not going to be playing teams of Real Madrid’s quality every week. So we need to put some of our concerns from today’s game into perspective. We only need to be ready by the time we have to meeting them in a competitive game which could be as early as February or even later.
More than the tourist-type friendlies, competitions such as these are so purposeful. It’s a great show of top teams for the crowd. There’s some real pre-season experience to be had. So far we have played Inter Milan, AC Milan and Real Madrid. Next up is our last pre-season friendly against Roma at Washington. Almost sounds like a champions league or europa league run-in.
Quite pleased with the pre-season progress so far. Very hopeful that two or three players would come in. I’m all for Wayne Rooney. A new technically very sound defender would also do. Our midfield is light. Been waiting for De Rossi. We still got time. In a transfer window, the last few weeks and days tend to be longer. Anything could happen. Stay tuned.