Drogba tags Torres ‘The Future’ of Chelsea

Exit-bound Stamford Bridge striker; Didier Drogba has anointed Fernando Torres as the next forward man to shine next season with Chelsea after he finally confirmed his exit from the club today.

The Spaniard was described by the Ivorien as the next big thing that will emerge from Chelsea.

Drogba who was the hero during the Champions League Final played in Munich as Chelsea emerged first time winners of the title, scored the equalising goal and the penalty shot that sealed victory for the Stamford Bridge confirmed his exit from Stamford Bridge just four days after said he really doesn’t know why he was never paired with the Spaniard upfront more often.

Torres, signed for £50m from Liverpool in January 2011, has failed to hold down a regular starting spot in his first full season in west London and earlier this week said he wants reassurances over his role at the club from Chelsea’s owners.

But Drogba, 34, is convinced the Spain striker will stay at Stamford Bridge and has backed him to shine next season.

The Ivorien said his relationship with Torres is very good but he’s still bothered why they weren’t paired on field most time which said he is leaving in the past because he is moving on.

Giving his opinion on what he feels about Torres’ fitness this season he said it’s been a difficult season for him but he showed in a few games but he is very sure that next season is going to be his season for he is the future here at Stamford Bridge.

“We have a very good relationship and we didn’t understand why we didn’t play together more, but that’s the past.

Di Matteo has transformed Chelsea’s fortunes – Ron Gourlay

Chelsea chief executive Ron Gourlay has hailed the performance of interim manager of the club Roberto Di Matteo saying it is a the ‘phenomenal turnaround’ of the club’s fortunes but  has refused to endorse Roberto Di Matteo for the permanent manager’s position following last night’s historic Champions League victory.

The Blues won the Champions League for the first time in a thrilling 4-3 penalty shootout following a 1-1 draw after extra-time.

The win, which follows the 2-1 defeat of Liverpool in the FA Cup final two weeks ago, is even more remarkable given the precarious position the team were in when Di Matteo was appointed until the end of the season after the sacking of Andre Villas-Boas in March.

‘It’s been an incredible few months and a great ending last night with winning the trophy,’ Gourlay said after owner Roman Abramovich finally saw the club he has invested £1 billion in since taking over in 2003 win the Champions League.

‘The performances and results weren’t there so we had to make the change, we brought Robbie in as interim manager until the end of the season and we’ve seen a phenomenal change and a run of results which finished last night with winning the Champions League,’ Gourlay  said.

On whether the Italian had done enough to be get the job for next season, the chief executive added: ‘There’s a number of things we’ve got to look at and we’ll review where we are and take it from there, but it’s a phenomenal turnaround really.’

Blues chairman Bruce Buck meanwhile assured Di Matteo of ‘serious consideration’.

‘He’s done an amazing job, Robbie, he’s enabled the players to get back the confidence they used to have and he’s really got the players performing,’ he said.

‘We’ve put [managerial speculation] aside for the last six or eight weeks, concentrating on [semi-final opponents] Barcelona, the FA Cup and Bayern Munich, but I think now we have to sit down and figure that out.

‘Roberto is certainly in the mix; he’s done a great job and has to have serious consideration.’

Buck, who said the club would appoint a new manager ‘sooner rather than later’, went on to say: ‘We really need to get the new manager on board before we can start talking about signing players.’

The future of one of the central figures of last night’s triumph, Didier Drogba, is also uncertain, with the Ivorian striker who scored the equaliser in normal time and the winning penalty out of contract this summer.

‘Didier is a big-match player and he did it once again,’ Buck said of the 34-year-old.

‘I think Ron Gourlay is going to sit down with his agent this week and we’ll see where it goes.

‘We have to do what’s best for Chelsea Football Club and Didier had to do what’s best for him, we’ll just see how the discussions go.’

Chelsea on path to Glory – Di Matteo

Interim Coach of Chelsea; Roberto Di Matteo has promised  club owner Roman Abramovich his dream of Chelsea lifting the Champions League title is in view.

Eight managers have come and gone with an outlay of£700million in transfer fees and an estimated £2billion overall this is the second time the club will be playing the final in the nine years of Abramovich reign as the owner of the club.

The lure of the Champions League is what brought the Russian billionaire to Stamford Bridge; his hunger to win it has arguably cost half a dozen managers their jobs.

And it is very possible that the axe might still fall on the interim coach; Di Matteo even with a win on Saturday against Bayern but he is hoping that the journey will reach its end in the Allianz Arena, living in the absolutely certainty that one day Abramovich’s dreams will be realised.

Di Matteo said the time has come for Chelsea to claim the Champions League title because he has the confidence that the Blues can make it this time and he is guessing that the Boss is so excited about this.

The 68th richest person in the world, according to Forbes, Abramovich’s Champions League history is scarred by ill fortune.

Luis Garcia’s ghost goal for Liverpool in 2005, John Terry slipping as he lined up the penalty that would have secured victory over Manchester United in 2008, Andres Iniesta scoring a semi-final winner for Barcelona in injury-time 12 months later.

No amount of money can ease the pain of being kept apart from that elusive prize and Di Matteo cannot afford to get sucked into the emotion.

“You make your own destiny and fate,” he said.

“Reaching the last stages of this competition is difficult enough and you always need a bit of luck in a cup competition.”

Chelsea’s fortune came in the acceptance of Di Matteo to take charge on an interim basis following the dismissal of Andre Villas-Boas at the beginning of March.

It has been suggested that the decision to make a change followed expressions of discontent from senior players.

Chelsea are reliant on winning tomorrow’s game in order to qualify for next season’s Champions League.

The mere fact they have that chance, having lifted the FA Cup a fortnight ago, is confirmation Di Matteo not only stabilised the situation but managed to get the Chelsea ship moving forwards again, thanks chiefly to a memorable night against Napoli in a last-16 tie that, under Villas-Boas’ watch, appeared to have drifted out of reach.

Chelsea will have to win it without inspirational skipper John Terry, who is suspended, along with Ramires, Raul Meireles and Branislav Ivanovic.

Thankfully for Di Matteo, David Luiz and Gary Cahill have recovered from their respective hamstring injuries and although Lampard sparked a worry when he did a few stretches during training, the veteran midfielder appeared unconcerned.

So now Di Matteo, who spent six seasons with the Blues as a player, will try to engineer the best day of Abramovich’s footballing life and Chelsea’s entire history, with Lampard accepting it would have been virtually impossible without the Italian manager.

Season not for Barcelona – Pep Guardiola

Barcelona Coach; Pep Guardiola has so much to worry about this time as his exceptionally gifted team Barcelona failed in their bid to reach the final of the Champions league last night against Chelsea when they lost by aggregate 3-2 to Chelsea.

Guardiola told a post-match news conference he did not know what else Barca could have done but their elimination from Europe’s elite club competition highlighted the fact that when their flowing passing game fails they have little scope to adjust their tactics.

With only defenders Carles Puyol or Gerard Pique able to challenge the imposing Chelsea players in the air, pumping balls into the box was not much of an option, especially after the latter went off with concussion midway through the first half.

This has come as no surprise for some pundits going by the unimpressive performance displayed the Spanish club in their last three games as it has not be up to the standard bar of display the club has set for itself.

Guardiola was left musing on whether luck was simply against the club this season following a spectacular run of success that has yielded 13 trophies since he took over in 2008.

The was not able to pinpoint what why the team lost to Chelsea last night which would have passed as his third champions league finals in four years and sadly enough Barcelona who fell to the sword of Chelsea are the holders of the title and would also have passed as the first club to win back-to-back European titles since Ac Milan in the year 1990.

Barcelona could not defend themselves at Stamford Bridge during the first leg of the champions league game against Chelsea as they fell by a lone goal despite their high percentage of possession and array of chances created which could not be converted to goals.

In the El-Classico, Barcelona fell against their Spanish arch-rival Real Madrid in a game that ended 2-1 last week also after their unlucky performance against Chelsea.

Last night at Nou Camp in a game where Barcelona was touted to carry the day as it is in the tradition of the Barcelona to turn tables around, dramatically Barcelona never knew what hit them as they were not able to pin down Chelsea even after getting a 2-0 lead and making Chelsea play with one man down after Chelsea Captain John Terry was red-carded and will be missing the final coming up May 19th, Terry was sent off 8 minutes before the halftime whistle was blown.

Barcelona forward man Lionel Messi who serves as the eye and wonder man for the Spanish club couldn’t add to the tally of his 63 goal season after he was availed a penalty spot kick and he whistled it against the bar just after coming back from the first half break, he also missed a screaming chance which flowed off the post.

Chelsea at this point believed in themselves and within the team on filed encouraged their fighting spirit despite playing with a man down went for the killer strikes as they came from 2-0 to make it a final 2-2 draw with a Fernando Torres breakaway and a quick dribble of goalkeeper victor Valdes to seal the equalizer minutes to the end of the second half.

With Barcelona’s dismal performance this season Barca coach admitted that this season is not Barca’s and their focus now will be on the King’s cup as Real Madrid are inching close to lifting the La Liga title and the coach’s future with the Barcelona is right now shady as he would be speaking club president Sandro Rosell days to come.

Drogba sinks Barcelona at Stamford Bridge

Before the game against the Catalans Barcelona,interim coach Di Matteo prayed his choice of a pointman for Chelsea in a game of wit be the right one, as he selected Didier Drogba over Fernando Torres.

Now Di Matteo can be sure he made the right choice of a forward man tonight as Didier Drogba gave Chelsea a surprise win over Barcelona inching closer to the Champions League final.

It was the only goal recorded in the first leg of the champions league match as the Ivorien struck the Catalans in the first half stoppage time.

From the blow of whistle signaling the start of the match,Di Matteo’s boys played to instruction as they deviced a tactical and defensive formation keeping the Catalans at bay, although going by match stats, Barcelona got so much of the possession but were stopped every time they attempted to get to the back of Petr Cech’s net.

Spectacular goal attempts by Barcelona were from Alexis Sanchez and a curler from Pedro at stoppage time which both hit the goal bar, former Arsenal forward man Cesc Fabregas’ attempt almost produce an equalizer as it was cleared by Ashley Cole.

Also Barca captain Carles Puyol almost got an equaliser in the final minutes but thanks to Cech who brilliantly clawed out his close-range header.

It can be said that Barcelona were short of luck tonight plus they were tactically outplayed.

An impressive Chelsea side had a disciplined defence line which actually played out the mercurial Lionel Messi in front of the home fans likewise the visitors as Barca could not make any breakthrough to leave Chelsea with a slim lead ahead of next week’s second leg at the Nou Camp.

The goal which has put Chelsea in a better position came when Messi gave the ball away in the centre circle and Frank Lampard switched play with a fine pass to release Ramires down the left as he picked out Drogba lurking at the back post and the striker hit a left foot shot under Victor Valdes and into the net.

Drogba has been very phenomenal recently with the sinking of Tottenham in the FA Cup semi-final at the weekend,which is why he got the upper hand against Torres in the attack and he never dissappointed his coach as he produced the winning and only goal.