Many Chelsea fans this season will be hoping that as soon as they close their eyes, this season has been a dream, or rather a nightmare. The honeymoon period under Jose Mourinho this season was over, and fans quickly started to realise that the rot had started to grow at Stamford Bridge.
The ideal set up for this season was the team that won the league convincingly well would have continued their greatness, and fought for not only the league, but the Champions League, the FA Cup and the Capital One Cup. Instead, Chelsea got to a low of 15th, went out in the fourth round of the Capital One Cup against Stoke on penalties, knocked out of the Champions League by PSG and FA Cup by Everton.
It’s been far from the picturesque season many Blues fans had hoped for, and with the side now sitting 10th, European football next season will be difficult. But who is to blame for Chelsea’s demise?
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Firstly, the finger should be pointed at Jose Mourinho. Mourinho has a knack of only lasting three years at a club, and ends up falling out with the medical and coaching staff, and then the players. This season was no different, with the boss publicly falling out with doctor Eva Caneiro for looking to the injured Eden Hazard.
Some believe it ran a lot deeper than this, with players not being focused enough on the game but on the team doctor, so Mourinho ‘tactically’ removed her.
But it highlighted the demise of a respected figure at Stamford Bridge.
The performances on the pitch were not much better, with Chelsea struggling to win games, although Mourinho did still keep to his public humiliation of Arsene Wenger. Chelsea already lost 11 games before the Portuguese manager was sacked, seven more than the previous season. His win percentage was only 36%, his lowest ever. Whether this was down to his head being turned by other jobs is yet to be seen, but many believe Mourinho actually wanted the Manchester United job rather than a return to Chelsea.
His defence let him down a lot during the failing months. John Terry, their ‘captain, leader, legend’ did not play well at all. Chelsea fans fail to see how poor he was, but his lack of pace and age helped opposition strikers run rings round him. Add in the extended age and lack of pace of players, such as Branislav Ivanovic and Gary Cahill, and it meant that Chelsea’s defence was no longer as solid as it needed to be. Ivanovic and Cahill were quickly dropped, but it is no surprise now that in the absence of Terry, the club are doing a lot better.
Further up the field, Cesc Fabregas has been a shadow of the player he was last season, frustrating Chelsea fans across the country. Add in Eden Hazard having his head turned by a Real Madrid move and Diego Costa reportedly wanting a move away, it meant the team were not committed to the cause, and it showed through Chelsea’s performances.
Ultimately, their failure was down to Mourinho, but the players did very little to help him keep his job. Jose will now be hoping that, should he get the United job, that he gets sweet revenge.