by Rosy Cobb (@WeKnowWWA)
1. When the chips are down….Stamford Bridge roars!
Some Chelsea supporters could have been forgiven for going into the match with some doubts over what was to come in the first home match since Roman Abramovich was sanctioned by the Government. But the crowd were in fine voice and managed to even through some shade at the travelling Newcastle support, with a chorus of “Boris Johnson, he’s coming for you”, referencing the Toon Army’s own controversial ownership. The retort of “Mike Ashley, he’s coming for you” may have left some fans shuddering at the prospect, but all in all, the Bridge got behind the team and rose above the chaos to show how important it is to have fans inside the stadium.
2. Nick Candy continues to sweeten
Interviewed as he made his way into the stands on Sunday, prospective Chelsea owner and season ticket holder Nick Candy continued to say the words that most blues fans like to hear. That being that he is keen to buy the club and be its “custodian”, repeating the rhetoric that the club does not belong to anyone other than the supporters and its community and backing fan representation at board level. The property tycoon has also revealed plans to invest £1.5 billion in the regeneration of Stamford Bridge, suggesting that this could increase annual revenue by as much as 25%.
3. Petr Cech and Marina Granovskaia’s futures hang in the balance
Sitting side by side in the director’s box on Sunday afternoon were two current Chelsea employees who might just be wondering what the future has in store. Cech, a Chelsea legend and Champions League winning keeper, will always have a space reserved in the soft spots of supporter’s hearts but Granovskaia is very much seen as Abramovich’s right-hand woman. Cech was seen showing something on his phone to Granovskaia, who remained stoney faced throughout the exchange and must be seen as in a more precarious situation than that of Cech. Chelsea supporters recognise her prowess in transfer dealings and her achievements in securing signings, but it is likely that she will be shown the door once a new owner is found, even if manager Thomas Tuchel is keen for her to stay. Cech will be seen as someone who can transition the club, Marina will likely be the collateral of throwing out all associations of the Abramovich reign.
4. Kovacic our most influential midfielder
It used to be a hot topic, how could Kante and Jorginho both fit into our system. Now, it is which one of those will sit out to make way for Mateo Kovacic, and which one will likely leave this summer. With Conor Gallagher likely to be involved in next seasons first team, and Declan Rice rumoured to be eyeing up Andreas Christensen’s number four shirt, the midfield is looking crowded.
Since Tuchel has arrived, Kovacic has seemed like a new signing, and it is no coincidence that our form began to slip away just at the time the Croatian was sidelined. Coming on as a substitute in the Newcastle game, he drove Chelsea forward and seemed intent on securing the three points. His vision and his versatility ensure that he can carry the ball and bring others around him into the game and that his impact is always positive. As a team, we are much more balanced and aggressive with Kovacic on the pitch, and his progression under Tuchel could deem Jorginho expendable come the end of the season.
5. Kai Havertz is the best on our turf
Much has been said of Kai Havertz since he popped up with that Champions League winning goal, oh and that Club World Cup penalty too. Havertz seems like a fairly low-key kind of guy, posting pictures of his dogs and his life in London with his girlfriend. But on the pitch he has become Chelsea’s first choice number nine, relegating record signing Romelu Lukaku to the bench and becoming the highest scorer since Tuchel’s arrival with 15 goals in all competitions. His 89th minute winner on Sunday was the best finish I have seen yet from the German, drawing the ball down perfectly with his deft first touch which had pundits comparing him to Dennis Bergkamp, a man credited with playing ‘beautiful football’. The finish was also truly sublime, reducing Newcastle players to the floor and though Kai himself was disappointed with his performances last season, this time around he has become the focal point of the team and is carrying all our expectations upon his shoulders and taking it all in his languid stride. He may not yet be the best on earth, but he is certainly the best to currently grace our turf.
Written and edited by Rosy Cobb