Chelsea produced the kind of attacking performance in Europe that Manchester United fans were screaming for 24 hours earlier, but found centurion Lionel Messi was still too good for them, as they lost 3-0 in the Nou Camp in what was the harshest of Champions League lessons.
There was a time in my career when even as a Tottenham fan I felt that Arsene Wenger was a bit special. Today I feel, probably like Wenger feels, that he is oh so close from putting it all together. The trouble is that he just can’t find the right formula, writes
They are supposed to be embroiled in yet another ‘crisis’ at Stamford Bridge, but a dramatic victory over London rivals Tottenham at Wembley, inspired by two-goal Marcos Alonso, showed pretty emphatically that the Chelsea spirit is very much alive, even in the post-John Terry era.
The opening weekend of the season may be too early to talk of a crisis, but the mood music around Stamford Bridge is not good and Saturday’s humiliation by Burnley was not out of character from a club that has appeared dysfunctional since before becoming champions last May.
If there was any tension remaining in the title race — and let’s be honest there wasn’t a lot — Chelsea’s comfortable victory over Middlesbrough has seen it totally evaporate and opened up an opportunity for Antonio Conte’s side to be crowned champions at West Brom on Friday before rivals Tottenham even kick a ball again.