By Tim Harrison
They’ll write folk songs about Brad Guzan’s legs. Every goal in Chelsea’s 3-0 victory against Middlesbrough on Monday night either went off or through the hapless keeper’s pins.
To be fair, the Boro goalie made several saves with his legs as well. But mostly he was nutmegged and embarrassed.
Not that his team-mates had anything to crow about.
Boro slumped back down to the Championship with barely a whimper, while Chelsea are poised for glory.
And if success can be achieved with two league games remaining, Tony Conte will be able to rest key players (N’Golo Kante needs at least another week’s recovery time) ahead of the FA Cup Final.
Goals from Diego Costa (No20 for the season), Marcos Alonso and Nemanja Matic swept Boro aside, as Roman Abramovic – roaring them on from his plush padded seat in the west stand – watched with glee. It was also one of Cesc Fabregas’s finest displays in a blue shirt.
Champions League football is heading back to Stamford Bridge, and a serious shuffle of the pack is expected in the summer.
Despite Costa’s goal, through the famous legs of Guzan, he remains a grumpy, tantrum-ridden soul, constantly complaining, growling and hobbling about; a footballing hypochondriac whose antics grow tiresome. He will be permitted to go to China, for a fee which will then be passed elsewhere for a striker replacement. All efforts will be made, however, to hang on to Eden Hazard.
Conte’s passionate touchline display on Monday evening at the Bridge underlined the bond that has instantly developed between fans and manager.
At one time it would have been unthinkable to say it, but Jose Mourinho’s era is fading from view. The Conte age could prove every bit as exciting.
The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and unless specifically stated are not necessarily those of Hammersmith & Fulham Council.
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