The International break has come at the right time for Chelsea. Ahead of a relatively-easy-October fixtures, the Champions badly needed a breather to regroup again.
When a team is riding high with the momentum, winning matches at a stretch and wanting the next game to come early, international football break can be a nightmare for them. On the other hand, it usually works as a medicine for teams, who are under pressure and desperately needs a breathing space to come up with fresher ideas.
Chelsea have made a poor start to the 2015-16 Premier League season. Lying two places above the relegation zone, the Champions have won just two games so far, while have suffered five defeats in all competitions already.
Jose Mourinho said after the last match that he believes his team can still turn the tide, and are good enough to finish in top four. The club have given him a public backing, ensuring him that his job is safe for now.
Everyone at the club must stick together and work hard to improve the results. It’s time for action. It’s only been 8 matches, and there are still time for a heroic come back. Chelsea have done that before in the past, so why not now?
Before going into details, first the Chelsea fixtures for October:
Premier League: Chelsea vs Aston Villa / 17th October
Champions League: Dynamo Kiev vs Chelsea / 20th October
Premier League: West Ham vs Chelsea / 24th October
League Cup: Stoke vs Chelsea / 27th October
Premier League: Chelsea vs Liverpool / 31st October
Apart from the final game against Liverpool (though Chelsea have enjoyed great success over the Reds at the Bridge) in October, in theory, Chelsea should pick up full points from the other games.
In theory, that is. These are winnable games, and Chelsea have beaten all of them last season. However, with confidence hitting rock bottom, Chelsea might face difficulty in collecting full points from all their October matches.
Relegation threatened Aston Villa have won only one game this season (yet to win a home game) conceding 13 goals. Does that feel good? Hell, no. They’re up against a side that have conceded 17 goals already. Plus, Villa have this bad habit of winning odd games against Chelsea.
In recent years, Chelsea have registered few big margin wins over them – 8-0 victory at the Bridge (2012/13), 7-1 win in 2009/10, 2-4 win at Villa Park in 2011/12, whereas Villa time-to-time have produced some great victories over the Blues like the Delph winner in March 2013/14, 3-1 win at the Bridge in 2012/13 and 2-1 win at Villa Park in 2009/10.
Villa have this tendency of pulling up a shock result, but like Chelsea, they’re also going through a poor form at the moment – having won just once in last six matches.
The Blues then travel to Kiev to face Dynamo Kiev, who are yet to lose a single match this season. They have won four games in a row, and fight stretch it to fifth when Chelsea visit them on October 20th.
Having already suffered a shock (or is it?) 2-1 defeat against Porto in the last Champions League fixture, Chelsea can hardly afford to lose against Kiev. A draw from Kiev, in any normal circumstances, would have been a fair result, but Jose Mourinho won’t be happy with that.
When was the last time West Ham were above Chelsea in the League table after eight games? The Hammers have shot down Premier League heavyweights like Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City this season, and Chelsea could be their latest victim as well.
And finally Chelsea wrap up the month with a home fixture against Liverpool, which should be an interesting game. The Reds haven’t won against Chelsea since Brendan Rodgers took charge at the club. Their last league win at the Bridge was back in 2011/12 when Glenn Johnson scored the winner, and Daniel Sturridge scored for the Blues.
However, by the time Chelsea meet Liverpool, Mourinho will face a different Liverpool manager. As per the reports, it should be Jurgen Klopp.
It’s a new beginning, a new start for Liverpool, and their fans are heavily excited (judging by the social media reactions) over the potential signing of Klopp. Such euphoria surrounding a new manager was last seen when Rafael Benitez was appointed from Valencia. It could be a tricky fixture for Chelsea.
Overall, Chelsea should win at least 2 Premier League games in October, and depending on other results, expect them to climb up the table, and move into top 10.