Chelsea banter 36179


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19 Mar 2024 13:28:37
I've been very critical of Marc Cucurella but he has been superb recently. I hope he can keep up this run of form and continue improving.

Sterling has been poor but I'm backing him to hit form again soon.

Agree0 Disagree0

19 Mar 2024 13:41:55
Standard I hope so. I’ve got him all over 12 goals this season in a charity bet.

19 Mar 2024 16:13:42
I disagree about Cucurella, I don't think there has been any improvement.

Sterling will score the next big chance he gets. He had a stinker in front of goal but was still key to almost everything good about Chelsea v Leicester. I'm not sure why he's getting such grief for his free kick, sometimes you catch them wrong. Pretty sure he's scored 2 of our 3 this season.

Madueke coming on against tired legs of 10 men and scoring a screamer with the last kick of the game doesn't change the fact that Sterling is one of the few who routinely find themselves in scoring positions.

19 Mar 2024 21:15:38
RBD, mostly I'm with you on Cuca. I feel like City's interest in him was trolling our new owners – you can't really imagine him in a Pep team.

Sterling might be the player I've been most frustrated watching in memory. (Even Malouda had that one incredible season. ) So obviously talented, but only plays to that talent twice or so a season. No concentration. Messes up countless easy chances/ passes/ touches but then pulls something undeniably brilliant from the bag (see the City game) . The fact that he's meant to be the elder statesman of the team and
then pulls a stunt like the pen says it all really. Plays in such a petulant and immature way – terrible body language when a pass doesn't come through, countless easy goals not scored due to his selfishness (immediately remember when he should've squared to Palmer in a previous game to put that one to bed), endless counters broken down at the crucial moment when the ball comes his way. even that Udogie red earlier in the season against Spuds was a consequence of an easy through ball so badly mirubbish that you can barely credit it came from the boot of a top-level footballer.

Having said all of that, our own fans booing him is shameful. I really don't understand how people think getting on players' backs is going to help a team (especially a team of mostly young players) . I'd love to see one whole season of the fans giving it all like the Dortmund fans and what a difference that would make – maybe we'd still be sh*t but at least teams coming to play us would be a bit intimidated.

19 Mar 2024 22:02:30
EdW, I’m also not a fan of supporters booing at individual players.

I can’t see what it achieves. No player deliberately has a bad game.

19 Mar 2024 23:17:12
EdW you will not be surprised that I agree with you about Sterling except when you referred to him as a top-level player. I don’t agree with supporters booing players or the team but I guess some fans see it as the only vehicle for expressing their opinions and frustrations. Stamford Bridge has never been an intimidating ground for other teams as far as the crowd is concerned. There was a time when teams were intimidated by us on the pitch but those days have gone.

20 Mar 2024 08:59:10
Tbh I don't think Cucurella was a terrible signing in isolation, the fee was obviously way too much but as far as I recall we payed more in order to ensure Colwill only went there on loan. He was a highly regarded player. He just hasn't worked out, hasn't improved at all and is constantly at fault for goals.

His complete inability to deliver any kind of useful pass or cross into the box is baffling for a player who came through at Barcelona. He still flies out of defence and gets nowhere near the ball (hello Newcastle) and still gets roasted on the outside every game (worst example was Wimbledon) .

As for Sterling, I agree that he's paid like a world class player and he hasn't shown that at Chelsea. But until one of the other wingers shows they can do all the basics as well has him, they aren't going to play. I think part of the booing stems from the fact that we are being briefed in the media that a player like Gallagher who gives everything for the shirt is being unreasonable with his wage demands, while Sterling who is paid more than twice what Gallagher is supposedly asking for often goes missing.

20 Mar 2024 10:56:57
RBD, Sterling was shocking last season along with virtually every other player. This season he started well and the fans in the ground were ok but in the last few weeks the fans attitude towards him has been toxic.

I’ve said before he is a marmite player but recently even when he just receives the ball there is groan from some fans.

His performances have to get the majority of fans back onside but there are some that will never support him and can’t wait to say, “I told you so. ”.

20 Mar 2024 11:22:40
Cucurella has improved this year imo. He still needs to improve a lot more but atlwast can can complete a 5 yard pass this year.

20 Mar 2024 13:54:22
For sure Tom, there's a large portion of people that just don't like Sterling for whatever reason. Certain dregs of the British press treated him disgracefully earlier in his career and I think the tar they brushed him with is difficult for people to get out of their heads.

The fact remains, and I'll let others decide what they want to take away from this, he's the best winger at the club.

20 Mar 2024 14:26:59
RBD, he certainly is.

20 Mar 2024 20:47:48
Wasn't Palmer nominally signed as a winger?

If Sterling is our team's best winger (discounting the above) that's a damning indictment of the money spent (which we all know anyway) . Having said that, winger is possibly the position on the pitch that looks the worst without confidence, and many of our players seem to be lacking that.

RBD, agree that the abuse Sterling has suffered during his career in the press is shocking – let's just call it directly what it is: racist.

And yes, I do think there's a good player in there, I just don't think he shows it anywhere near often enough. I remember being really excited by him when he burst onto the scene at Liverpool, but by the time his City career was midway through I didn't consider him a player in the same bracket as the other City players, and he seemed to have lost something of the spark that made him special in those first couple of seasons. I recall an England tournament debut (possibly? ) against Italy (in the Euros? ) when he spanked an early shot against the bar/ crossbar from about 30 yards out. (In hindsight that type of vicious long-range strike seems almost impossible to credit from him now. )

In response to 'until one of the other wingers shows they can do all the basics as well has him', I'd argue that it's exactly the basics he really doesn't seem to do well at all. I think I could forgive him most things if he wasn't constantly turning the ball over in dangerous areas/ ruining promising situations with terrible misplaced passes. His short and long passing accuracy this season must be atrocious – he certainly fails the eye test for an elite-level footballer in that regard. His dribbling also often strikes me as being straight at, and then into, players rather than using any kind of skill or close control to go around them. To mitigate this, he's come from City where players' movement disrupts defences – it's possible that he's so used to teammates drawing defenders in certain directions that, in match situations, under pressure, he's almost forgotten at a gut level how to improvise (the Pep programming), or leans on things that would have happened at City (a particular angle or pathway opening), but it also does often feel like another aspect of fairly basic skills not being up to scratch. With three managers across two seasons, our coaching isn't going to have been in any way consistent (and it seemed as though Tuchel didn't coach the attacking players in patterns of play really) .

But part of the major frustration with Sterling is also (and here's where I disagree with Jimbo) that when he does play well, finds that level of motivation, he looks unstoppable – and he's only really decided to do that against City this season. On his wages he should be stepping up like that every week – if he was we'd be a far better side. And that comes to RBD's point about Gallagher, which I agree with. Perhaps because it's Sterling he will be judged more harshly regardless. maybe you just give up a little internally faced with the kind of attitude he's faced from the press. Which brings us back to the fans booing, and what that adds or detracts from a player's mentality.

20 Mar 2024 21:31:09
EdW, I personally would never consider Palmer as a winger.

I agree with Sterling (in my opinion) being our most threatening winger, on “current form it has the bar quite low.

Strangely I think his best performances this season have been when he has played in front of James although generally speaking he has played on the left.



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