SPORTSDESK COMMENT WITH ROB GREEN: Jose’s smoke and mirrors aren’t fooling anyone
This week has been one of the worst of Jose Mourinho’s career at Chelsea.
After barely scraping a draw against Swansea in their opening game, the removal of first team doctor Eva Carneiro from the bench amid a massive public backlash and 3-0 humiliation by title rivals Man City have compounded a miserable few days for the Chelsea gaffer.
When Jose said 3-0 was a ‘fake scoreline’, I can’t tell if he was trying to comfort his players, or was making a reasonable comment, as the scoreline really didn’t reflect the game.
Man City could easily have had four or five with man of the match Sergio Aguero missing some golden chances alongside some stunning saves from Asmir Begovic.
He took captain John Terry out of a defence that couldn’t control the quality of Aguero at half-time and replaced him with the inexperienced Kurt Zouma, who looked more out of his depth than Terry.
I can only assume he is trying to push the Chelsea board further towards getting a deal done for Everton’s John Stones, who Mourinho is understood to be a big admirer of.
With a £30m bid rejected, it will be up to owner Roman Abramovich to decide how much he values the Everton centre-back.
With just under two weeks left of the summer transfer window, it will be interesting to see if Mourinho is given the green light to add extensively to a squad he desperately wants to strengthen and the hammering at City will only add to his desperation.
They go to West Brom this weekend, where they were comprehensively beaten 3-0 last year, in search of a first league win after Mourinho’s worst ever league start.
With the usually consistent Branislav Ivanovic suffering indifferent form so far this season, new signing Baba Rahman may be forced to pick up the pace of the Premier League very quickly if he is rushed into his debut this Sunday, especially if Mourinho wants to further highlight his lack of quality in depth.
With fresh reports suggesting that striker Alexandre Lacazette and winger Antoine Griezmann could be brought in for £20m each, Mourinho may well decide to spend and bring in more quality to his attack which seems to be lacking any sort of bite.
Star midfielders Eden Hazard and Cesc Fabregas have failed to shine so far and with Diego Costa prone to picking up hamstring injuries, points are needed very quickly before they drop out of the title race, even at this early stage.
With Man United and Liverpool joining Man City with back-to-back wins and with Arsenal picking up three points against Crystal Palace while teams like Everton and Swansea show their potential for a surprise charge, Mourinho will need to get his team firing before one of his rivals takes a lead in the early season.
Petr Cech, Didier Drogba and Filipe Luis moved on and were replaced by Asmir Begovic, Falcao and Rahman, this shows no sign of strengthening, just replacing with less experience and less quality.
With Chelsea on the ropes, the title could move elsewhere for the seventh consecutive season.