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Chelsea 1 - Fulham 1: Quick reaction in the immediate aftermath

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I'm not going to get into a tactical breakdown of the game here, we'll save that for later after we've had a little time to digest what transpired today. For now I'm just going to hit on a few quick bullet points of things that caught my eye in this one.

  • Petr Cech is worrying me. It's been pretty nice to not have much of a concern in goal the last 7 1/2 seasons, but I'm starting to worry about our keeper. He's been a little shaky dealing with crosses for years now, but the last few weeks have really seemed to highlight this problem. In all reality, the Cech that we all know and love would have kept three clean sheets in our last three fixtures.
  • Fernando Torres looked pretty decent today. There really wasn't too much more you could have asked from him. It was old-Torres like that he even managed to get that early shot off even if the thing went right at the keeper. His holding off the defender is the only reason Mata put us ahead, and he might well have put us back on top if the linesman hadn't incorrectly ruled him offside.
  • The center backs looked pretty good. I can't really even fault them for the goal, because had Cech made the correct decision they were positioned perfectly to stop any sort of rebound opportunity. Should have had a clean sheet, but shit happens sometimes.
  • Too many shots went straight at the keeper today. That says good things about Stockdale's positioning and the organization of their defense, but I'd usually expect a game in which we get 11 more shots than average to produce multiple goals.
  • This was a game in which a Pastore/Modric type would have really helped. Despite what AVB has said about us being fine in the central midfield, I'd fully expect to see us in on a few of those types in January. This game and the Wigan game just reinforce that need.
  • It's really sad that the Cech, Drogba, Malouda, Cole, Terry, Lampard core is getting old. It's pretty rare now to see an entire generation age like that at the same club, and it makes it difficult to remember that none of these guys are the same players they used to be.
  • Three points out of our last three games is certainly disappointing, but we've been the better team for the majority of those three games and without a few questionable goalkeeping decisions would probably be looking at three straight 1-0 victories. The realistic outlook here is probably third or fourth this season with a pretty massive turnover looming this summer, so for now let's just try to sit back and temper expectations a bit. This isn't the safest part of the table at the moment, but I'd guess we have far more in the way of reinforcements coming than do Arsenal or Tottenham. Relax...It will be ok.

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