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International duty roundup: 3/1/12

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Whenever there is an international break, quite a few Chelsea players are involved with their national teams. I thought we'd try something new for this one and do a loan style roundup to keep you up to date with all of the Chelsea players with their national teams. I'm going to cut it off at the U21 level for now, as who played for the U19's outside of England can be a bit rough to find. The Chelsea crew for the England U19's were awesome though, as Todd Kane set up Patrick Bamford for the winner and Chalobah was solid as usual. So without further adieu...

  • Florent Malouda - Malouda was introduced at the hour mark as France was playing Germany and went on to score the winner with a right footed shot. All in all it was an excellent cameo for Malouda in the 35 minutes or so of time on the pitch.
  • Gary Cahill - Cahill was involved in the other Marquee match of the day as England hosted the Dutch. He was the only Chelsea player in the starting 11, and he was probably the most dangerous player England had on set pieces. He'd score the first for England in the 83rd minute even though he was offside at the onset of his move. Excellent all around game for Cahill, he probably didn't hurt his chances at seeing significantly more playing time this summer with this outing.
  • Daniel Sturridge - Sturridge was introduced at about the 30 minute mark as Steven Gerrard went off injured. He was probably the best attacker England had for the majority of his time on the pitch, although he missed an easy chance that you'd expect Danny to finish regularly. He went off injured late in this one, no word yet on the severity of the injury.
  • Ashley Cole - Cole was an unused substitute for England. I'm thrilled that he was given the day off.
  • Jeffrey Bruma - Like Cole, Bruma went unused from the bench. It will be interesting to see what his role is when he's fully fit again as he's been better than either starting CB for the Dutch so far this year.
  • Branislav Ivanovic - Brani started and scored the second as the Serbians defeated Armenia by a 2-0 scoreline. That game was Tuesday, so Bran has had an extra day of rest than his teammates that played yesterday.
  • Petr Cech - Cech was the starter in goal for the Czech's. He played the full 90, but was denied a clean sheet in the dying moments by this weekend's opponent Simon Cox. As long as he keeps him off the scoresheet Saturday I'll be a happy camper.
  • Thibaut Courtois - Courtois was an unused sub as the Belgians drew Greece.
  • Kevin De Bruyne - Like Courtois, De Bruyne never left the bench. His chances of getting in this one was probably eliminated when Belgium went down to ten men and sat back to preserve the draw.
  • Romelu Lukaku - Lukaku was involved in this one, coming on at the half for Eden Hazard. He impressed in his limited opportunities, but only played a few minutes of 11 on 11. Once the Belgians went down to 10 he was left all alone up front.
  • Juan Mata - Mata was not involved in Spain's rout of Venezuela. This doesn't upset me, he'll have plenty of time on the pitch in the next two weeks.
  • David Luiz - Kind of a typical Luiz game. His turnover led directly to the Bosnia goal, but outside of that brainfart he may have been the best player on the pitch. He completely took Edin Dzeko out of the game.
  • Raul Meireles - Meireles started for Portugal as they helped to open the new Polish national stadium. The game ended 0-0, and I honestly don't really give a shit about Meireles' performance enough to force myself to watch the game.
  • Josh McEachran - Josh played the full 90 as the England U21's crushed their Belgian opponents. Josh was generally deployed in a deeper role in this one, and he was fairly impressive throughout. He also had a goal line clearance to preserve the clean sheet.
  • Patrick van Aanholt - PvA also played the full 90 in U21 qualifying. The Dutch failed to score, but they did keep a clean sheet. It was a solid if unspectacular game from van Aanholt, and it's nice to see that.
  • Tomas Kalas - Kalas was outstanding as the Czech U21's beat Romania by a 3-0 scoreline. He played the full 90.
  • Gael Kakuta - Kakuta played the full 90 as the French U21's drew their Italian counterparts. Kakuta's cross got an assist on the French goal. All in all it was a very decent display for the young midfielder.
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