There is a moment in Christopher Nolan’s ‘The Dark Knight’, when Bruce Wayne begins to believe that a Batman-less Gotham isn’t far away. Harvey’s antics in rounding up the mob show that there is a chance Gotham won’t need the silent protector who zooms around the streets at night, and keeps the city safe. And right on cue, in steps the madman, the demented Joker and kills any such possibility. In fact he manages to strike such fear in the hearts of people, Wayne included, that they begin to doubt whether even Batman could counter this new era of darkness clouding Gotham. The need for Batman becomes stronger than ever.
Playing the big boys always shows where the team really stands. And kudos to Liverpool, they showed that on their day, they were a real force to be reckoned with. We got our first 11 wrong, with a very bare looking midfield. The back 4 did okay if you ask me, the two goals conceded were more due to sublime finishes, rather than defensive errors. All in all, on a day when we might have escaped with a point with a bit of luck, the three rightly went to the home side. We came out of Anfield, without points but with at least some clues where we are going wrong.
John Obi Mikel
Slow, cumbersome and meagre ability is what this guy has shown up with in most Chelsea games. I don’t really understand the need to play him so regularly when we have Essien and Ramires, who are both excellent in tackling. The most irritating statistic which crops up, and I’m gonna save this for a future post, are his number of forward passes. Now, I know that the main job of a CDM is to break the flow of the opposing attack. But Makelele, Essien, Yaya Toure, Fletcher etc have shown that they can also be the start of an attack. I seriously think JOM needs to play some serious Playstation soccer, and learn the meaning of a forward pass. He is in no way even close to becoming an Essien or a Makelele, as touted by many. The most frustrating aspect of his gameplay is that he doesn’t seem to improve. He regularly misplaces passes, selects the most risk-free and negative pass available, and gets clumsy when caught on a counter-attack. Why Carlo trusts him so much, beats me. Even Ramires, new to the league, shows more drive and determination to get up and down the length of the pitch, and play at the tempo required. Mikel has just one gear, and doesn’t have the flexibility required by Chelsea.
This is not an excuse for the loss, but the refereeing was pathetic. The buildup to the second goal had a clear foul on Ashley Cole, and he lost the ball inside a second of the advantage being played. Webb allowed the play to go on and Torres dispatched it into the far corner. Pathetic refereeing. Pathetic. Pathetic. Thank God the sublime finish from El Nino made it worth. For 3 years running, we have been on the receiving end of poor decisions by refs in Anfield. The Lampard sending off(amongst the worst ever decisions in my opinion), the denied Kalou penalty last year, and now the Torres goal. Add this to the Malouda penalty which we were lucky to get in the year before. Game defining moments, season defining moments. Gotham needs its law makers to become a bit more responsible than what they have become.
We need Batman
Most of you would be wondering why I ever started on the note of Batman. But the situation in Chelsea is precisely that. For 12 games now we have been without a certain Frank Lampard, and the results against Wolves, Stoke, Blackpool, Wigan led to a belief that a Lampard-less Chelsea wasn’t far away, similar to a Batman-less Gotham. However, in the tougher games against Citeh, Blackburn, and now Liverpool, the massive void which Frank leaves is unmistakeable. And somehow when not just Bruce Wayne, but Harvey Dent(read Essien), and even Gordon(read Drogba) seem to take a break, how can you expect Gotham to be safe? Dick Gray played fabulously by Malouda, has been in great form and was unlucky to get us at least a goal at Anfield. But the real issue, I believe lies somewhere just behind the front 3. With a midfield of Zhirkov, Mikel and Ramires, we lack creativity, pace, and above all the drive to win. If the responsibility of Gotham’s safety falls on hands like John Obi, it’s seriously time to start the prayers. And more importantly, if the lawmakers of Gotham(read referees like Webb) contrive to make laws to derail the lives of the residents of Gotham, what can a Batman do? I see it pretty clear that a Chelsea without Frank Lampard, lacks that edge, and hope that he returns soon.
This episode showed that Gotham needed its biggest protectors for the big occasions. If I were you, I would be a bit worried about Gotham right now. At least till the moment the Dark Knight returns.