Chelsea will reach a big moment in their history when they arrive at Wembley today not just because of the opportunity to complete a ‘Double’ but because it marks the first game in a new era without captain John Terry, the man behind so much of their modern success. So, the big question is who will step up to replace him?
In spite of infernal overnight motorway roadworks, I suspect our 180-mile trek home from Burnley on Saturday night must’ve felt a helluva lot less tiresome than it did for the smattering of Spurs fans who schlepped back from their half-hearted display at Turf Moor the previous weekend.
“Santi Cazorla smiles” is not exactly news. Team-mates at Villarreal declared him “our Ronaldinho” because of his temperament as much as his talent, friends say his enthusiasm is infectious and, while he chats, his fellow Spaniard, asturiano and Londoner Juan Mata cannot resist approaching to share a joke.
Spain coach Vicente Del Bosque has plenty to think about this week as he readies his previously all-conquering side for their crucial upcoming World Cup 2014 qualifiers against Finland in Gijon on Friday, and then France in Paris three days later.
Madrid’s sporting press has been revelling in their side’s thumping 3-1 Copa del Rey semi-final second leg victory over Barcelona at the Camp Nou on Tuesday night, which sent Jose Mourinho’s side through to May’s final, while setting them up nicely for Wednesday’s Champions League last 16 second leg at Manchester United.