We all know football predictions are a tricky business – and that’s been proven true time and again by Chelsea this season.
Who would have predicted, after David Luiz got himself a red card and gave away a penalty on Tuesday night, that we’d end up drawing that game – despite scoring two?
Who would have predicted that we’d qualify from our Champions League group thanks to impressive performances against Ajax, Lille and Valencia at different stages – but would also lose to home to Bournemouth and Southampton?
It’s a naturally unpredictable sport, a particularly unpredictable season, and a team which plays like wild dogs in one game and puppies the next. Good luck anyone trying to make a living predicting what comes next.
After that Newcastle game at the weekend – we lost that one too, by the way. Chelsea are into their hard run of games. The Arsenal match ended up being much easier than it should have been thanks to Luiz’ error, but we still managed to drop points. Now things get really serious.
Ok well, actually we have Hull in the FA Cup this weekend. But after that, things get really serious. February might just be the toughest month any club have had in a few years. Leicester away, Man U at home, Spurs at home, Bayern Munich at home, then our personal nemeses Bournemouth, away.
It doesn’t get any easier after that either, with Everton, Aston Villa, Man City and the return leg against Bayern Munich lurking in March.
If we can make it through the next two months without reaching “crisis mode” we will have done very well indeed. In fact, if we emerge from this run still in the top 4, we will have done very well.
The pressure is not on Frank Lampard nearly as much as it could be. Because he’s a club legend, and because it’s his first season and we haven’t been able to sign anyone, he’s in a uniquely protected position. Any other coach at Chelsea would be under serious pressure right now.
As it is, Frank is being criticised but…