Chelsea 1 - Manchester United 0, FA Cup: manager reaction - it's ok, everybody relax, we're having a "great season"

Mike Hewitt

I had hoped this was a classic case of out of context. Nope.

He just had to go and ruin it, didn't he? Of course he had to. He had to open that big fat mouth of his and ruin it all.

Heaven forbid that we actually enjoy a win, even one for which we paid a heavy price. All I wanted was to bask in the glory of a sweet, sweet 1-0 victory over Manchester United. But he just had to go and ruin it. He couldn't sit this one out, like he excuses himself out of losses. Oh no. This one, this one he had to go and ruin.

I think it's a great season at the moment.

-ESPN

Ain't it though? It's so great! So great. So, so great. Oh, so so great.

Such a great season, you guys!

Cancel all expectations, it's a great season! Let the angels sing, it's a great season! Oh lordy, lordy, I'll never doubt again.

Jackass.

No, ESPN did not take this out of context at all. Amongst others, The Guardian and The Independent both ran it, in context, almost verbatim:

We're in the top four with a game in hand [on Tottenham Hotspur]. We're in the semi-finals of the FA Cup and the quarter-finals of the Europa League. It's a great season. It could be even better.

-The Guardian

We're in the top four with a game in hand. It's a great season. It could be even better.

-The Independent

Asinine.

Even Pravda ran it!

We're in the top four with a game in hand, we're in a very good position, the semi-finals of the FA Cup and the quarter-finals of the Europa League. I think it's a great season at the moment.

-chelseafc.com

Here's how great your season's been, oh Interim Wise One:

  • Your 34 matches in charge have landed you firmly in 2nd spot on the worst Chelsea manager of the last 15 years chart. Outside of Andre Villas-Boas, we have to go back to Ruud Gullit to find somebody with a worse record than you. And neither of those two men had the luxury of the Juan Mata - Eden Hazard combo.
  • You took over with Chelsea in 3rd, four points behind Manchester United. Today, Chelsea is 4th, 22 points behind Manchester United. That's 18 points lost in 18 matches. At least you're keeping the math simple.
  • You took over with Chelsea in 3rd, seven points ahead of Tottenham Hotspur. Today, Chelsea is 4th, 2 points behind Tottenham Hotspur. That's 9 points lost in 18 matches. At least you're keeping the math simple.
  • You have gained 31 points from 18 matches, an average of 1.72 points/game or barely good enough for 6th place in the Premiership.
  • You lost four matches to teams currently in the bottom half of the table. You have to go back a decade - to a time when Jody Morris and Enrique de Lucas both got 30+ appearances - to find similar tragedies and your season isn't even over yet! To add insult to injury, one of those four losses was to a local "rival," a team in last place, at Stamford Bridge.
  • You lost seven points from winnings positions (Southampton (H), Reading (A), Newcastle (A)), seven points that coincidentally would've been good enough for second place in the table.
  • You destroyed any notion of sensible and reasonable squad rotation.
  • You labor under the delusion that the Europa League carries any sort of priority or significance to the vast majority of fans.
  • You managed to lose the Club World Cup to a team, which finished 20 points off the pace in Brazil.
  • You managed to lose the League Cup to a team, which is currently 15 points off the pace of Chelsea.
  • You needed two replays to make it past three rounds of FA Cup action, the magnificence of the Manchester United comeback not quite making us forget about the abhorrence of Brentford.

So don't talk to me about great seasons and very good positions. Clawing at the final Champions League spot is not a great season. Hilarious and high profile failings in latter stages of cups is not a great season. Running players into the ground while marooning squad depth on the bench is not a great season. Disillusioning fans more and more is not a great season.

So don't. Just don't. Just crawl back in your hidey hole of excuses and emerge just once more, in May, to bid your goodbyes. I'm sure it'll be emotional.

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