Why Chelsea’s season “could crumble in four days.”
Paul Merson has been spot on with his punditry on Chelsea this season, and his take in his Sky column on this week’s games against Middlesbrough and Aston Villa in the EFL Cup and then FA Cup respectively very much mirrors ours.
The first leg against Boro has already been forgotten a little because of the games since. But it was one of the more frustrating games of the season so far. With a full strength team, Chelsea went out to play a game they knew was one of the most important of the season. But instead of shining, they flopped, and lost to mid-table Championship opposition with an injury issue at least as bad as Chelsea’s.
The atmosphere was mutinous at the time, and the only thing that stopped it all spilling over was the fact that we have this second leg at home to turn things around. But as Merson says, if we don’t manage that, all of the bad blood will come flooding back:
“This is a massive week in Chelsea’s season, which could fall apart in four days.
“If they win their Carabao Cup semi-final against Middlesbrough then beat Aston Villa, they’re knocking out a big team from the FA Cup as well. Then when you’re a few points off sixth place, all of a sudden it doesn’t look so bad.
But losing to Middlesbrough would be a major blow. Not going through over two legs against a Championship team? In one-off games you never know, you can lose one-off games. But over two games…”