The holidays are a hectic time especially in the Premier League, but before we truly begin all that madness, Chelsea do have an almost luxurious six days between games at the moment, and will have another five days after Monday’s contest against West Ham United.
We might have forgotten what it’s like to have more than three days to contemplate and recover and work, but the extra days off do come at a perfect time. Chelsea need to reset, to retool, to refocus, to re-everything after two most disappointing defeats put a harsh reality sting on the tail of a 17-match unbeaten run.
Or, as Frank Lampard put it, we need to rest, but we also very much need to wake up. That might be contradictory in the real world, but it makes all the sense in the football world.
“[The players] can have a little bit of a rest, hopefully not a happy rest because when you lose games you’re not happy, but physically the players need a bit of a break going into another really busy period.
“We need to reflect on the two games we have lost points in, which is disappointing, but also know this is a long season. We have to bounce back; the players have to bounce back. We’re a young group, some players are new to this league, they need to wake up to what this is about right now, because games like the last two prove it.”
Lampard had been preaching consistency throughout the unbeaten run, but having failed that test, we need to go back to basics and concentrate on the short-term results rather than any long-term goals. Any hushed, ambitious, or over-optimistic talk of a title challenge must be put on the back-burner. It’s about getting one game right.
“We must think short term and the players must learn lessons because the games are coming thick and fast over Christmas.
“I know what we can do, and I know consistency is another matter. We had been on a long unbeaten run, great, but to really get to where we want to be it has to be longer than that, or if you have a blip you have to bounce back from that.”
-Frank Lampard; source: Chelsea FC
We’re a third of the way through the season. We have plenty of time to worry about consistency. Let’s worry about winning again, first.