Tuesday, April 26

I Don't Want to Go To Chelsea

Chelsea 3 West Ham 0

Plans to watch this one live in a Buntingford pub had to be abandoned as my daughter Nell had to go into hospital with an asthma attack after a combination of smog, record Easter temperatures, pollen and a chest infection. But thanks to the good work of Addenbrooke’s hospital in Cambridge she’s now back home, much better and able to berate her mother for wearing a top with a Gunners badge on it.

The team sheet has Nigel texting “Nightmare!” and Matt texting “The very little chance we had has gone completely!” O’Neil is possibly finishied with football completely, Scotty, the newly-elected football writers’ player of the season, is still injured, Upson is out with illness and bizarrely there’s no place for Tomkins. So we’re relying on the likes of Gabbidon, Da Costa, Sears and Spector.

But the evidence on Match of the Day suggests the score slightly flattered Chelsea as Torres (whom we all knew would score against us) got their second on 84 minutes thanks to an assist from a puddle and their third came in the 94 minute with a Malouda piledriver.

We’d created chances before Big Fat Frank (inevitably) had put Chelsea ahead just before the interval. Thirteen-year-old Freddie Sears had encouragingly beaten Cashley Cole for speed and crossed for Jonathan Spector to test Cech with a diving header. Then Sears himself had a backheel cleared off the line by Cole.

In the second half Luiz hit the bar, but we created further opportunities. Freddie Sears crossed invitingly for Carlton to shoot first time, only for the great twitterer to instead turn and meander into a puddle. Keane and Ba also tested Cech as we showed signs of grabbing an equaliser.

Then Jonathan Spector set up Robbie Keane with a great run and through ball, but the striker missed the target when he should have scored.

Plenty of the usual WHU failings though, conceding a goal before the break and absolutely always allowing players to end their goalscoring ducks against our porous defence.

A disastrous result in terms of going bottom again, and Noble was injured too. But some hope can be gleaned from the performances of Sears (he’ll be dating girls soon at this rate — and we may have to build a side around him if we go down) and Super Jonny Spector in midfield and the news that Parker and Upson might be back for next Sunday’s trip to Man City. Though sadly the games are running out.

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