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Out with the boring, in with the goals

Without realizing and however arbitrarily, Chelsea Football Club have set a new modern club record Wednesday night.

Scott Heavey

Six weeks ago, Chelsea played Stoke City at Stamford Bridge. That match ended 1-0; Ashley Cole, of all people, scoring the only goal. While not as rare as, say, a John Obi Mikel (offside) goal, Cole's 7th ever Chelsea strike must have created some sort of a cosmic disturbance because then, all hell broke loose.

Let's see: 6-0 vs. Wolves; 2-1 at Arsenal; 4-0 at FCN; 4-1 vs. Norwich; 4-2 at Spurs; 1-2 at Shakhtar; 2-3 vs. United; 5-4 vs. United; 1-1 at Swansea; 3-2 vs. Shakhtar.

In the 10* matches involving Chelsea since the Colpocalypse, there have been 48 total goals - good for 4.8 goals/match and, get this, the highest such average for any 10-match period in the "modern" era. Not since some craziness in January-February of 1978 have Chelsea fans witnessed a greater goal glut.

* I realize this is an entirely arbitrary period, but at least it's a round number, right?

Shades of Carlo Ancelotti, whose Chelsea squad was party to 47 goals over a 10-match period starting with 8-0 vs. Wigan (second-to-last matchday of the Double-winning season) and ending with a 3-4 League Cup defeat vs. Newcastle on September 22nd, 2010.

The club record, in case you're wondering, is 58* set between Oct.10 - Nov.19, 1960 in the old Division 1 (Jimmy Greaves's last season at Chelsea): 3-3 vs. Everton; 7-1 at Millwall (League Cup); 0-1 at Birmingham; 2-6 vs. Burnley; 4-2 vs. Workington (League Cup); 2-0 at Preston; 4-2 vs. Newcastle; 4-1 vs. Arsenal; 7-0 at Doncaster (League Cup); 6-3 vs. Man City. Yes, you read that right, Chelsea shipped SIX to Burnley there. In all fairness, Burnley were actually the defending champions. More recently, they've spent 35 of the last 36 years playing non-top flight football.

* The current streak of 48 is tied with 6 other instances for 51st most "total-goals/10-match-period" in club history. Which isn't too shabby, considering that Chelsea have played 4705 matches** in their history (i.e. 4696 "10-match-periods").

** Data source is the fantastic results archive at Peruse away.

Boring boring Chelsea, right? You're welcome, neutrals.

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