Mandieta6's Blog



cech precise long 70m ball to fellaini segunda jugada to oscar, mata hazard goool champions of europe again! salida del balon is overrated dude, everyone try to play 2 centrales separados, mediocentro baja reciir y cuelgan balon!!! gilipollas saca con el potero direcatamente idejate de tonterias!!

Sir Calumn

Oh dear Arnau, breaking the racism rules, post-boosting rules and posting in a foreign language rules all in the same day......... and you used to be such a nice boy :(


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Chelsea - Manchester United Preview

First of all, I'd like to point out that all I'm going to do is summarise and rehash the general issues regarding this match, which have been done already by better bloggers. You can find good previews all across the net. Here's a good preview from a ManU perspective (The Busby Babe also has a more in-depth tactical preview here, and here's a good one from Chelsea's (and We Ain't Got No History also has an in-depth tactical preview here).

With that out of the way, let's have a look at the main points of interest for those too lazy to click those links:


**** that, I'm not getting into this. All that matters is that Chelsea wants revenge after blowing a 3-0 lead in one of AVB's last matches in charge and for losing 3-1 in the other match.

Missing players:

Both sides will be missing some players. Chelsea miss John Terry through suspension and Frank Lampard through injury. The enigma that is Marko Marin has apparently shaken off his injury and should be available, although his participation in this match is highly unlikely. ManU will be without Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Nemanja Vidic and Shinji Kagawa. Anders Lindegaard is also a doubt.

All this means that for the most part, it should be relatively easy guessing which players will feature today. Without Terry, Chelsea's back four will almost certainly be Cole, Luiz, Cahill and Ivanovic. Lampard's injury also forces RDM's hand into using a double-pivot of Ramires and Mikel.

For ManU, the injuries in the backline mean that it will most likely be De Gea, Evra, Evans, Ferdinand and Rafael, especially as Buttner played in the midweek match. Without Kagawa, Rooney is certainly gonna be used, although the question is how?

Chelsea Possible Lineups

What this means is that Chelsea basically have two choices between what approach to take. Either play the Mazacar (Mata, Hazard, Oscar) behind the main striker (95% Torres although RDM has suggested that he could be dropped) or play one of Bertrand or Moses instead. Each one comes with its own caveats.

Using the Mazacar would be the more attacking option, and one that would certainly keep a flimsy United defense on its toes. The interchange and fluidity of the attacking band would likely cause Manchester lots of problems, although it would require the fullbacks to get forward to offer width and also leave the defense more exposed, as whenever the creative threesome have played together Chelsea have not managed to keep a clean sheet. Without them? 5 clean sheets.

Using Bertrand is the other possibility. RDM had used this option in tougher matches and it would allow Chelsea to secure the left flank while maintaing some creative interplay on the other flank between 2 of the members of Mazacar. Based on form, Mata would the certain starter and while Oscar offers more defensive responisibility, I'd assume Hazard would be the other man to feature, having been benched/rested (for 18 minutes, admittedly) for the midweek match). There's also the slight chance that RDM might trust Moses and play him to offer some tracking back on either flank, as well as more direct, wide play.

ManU Possible Lineups

With Manchester things become more interesting, for there are basically two possible routes for them to go, and whichever Fergie chooses would go a long way to deciding how this match would go. The first is United's newly-used narrow diamond, which is largely atypical of the style of play the team has exhibited in the last decade. The intention of course would be to pack the centre with 4 players thereby compensating for the lack of a true ballwinner. The personnel would probably be RVP and one of Chicharito and Welbeck up front (I'd go with the latter), Rooney in the hole, and then 3 of Cleverly, Scholes, Carrick, Anderson and Fletcher for the shuttler and holder roles. Considering Fletcher's recent return to fitness and his participating in the Braga clash, I assume the holder role will go to Carrick. Scholes having not played in midweek would suggest he was being rested for this match, and based on form, Cleverley would get the nod.

Then there's the standard 4-4-1-1. At first glance, this seems more likely. ManU have used the diamond in midweek, meaning Valencia, Young and Nani are fresh. This would allow Fergie to try and pin Cole back with Valencia, who has done a marvellous job of pwning the fullback in recent clashes. Here, I assume RVP and Rooney would lead the charge, with Valencia on the right, and most likely Nani or Welbeck on the left, and possibly Scholes and Carrick in the middle.

There's also a chance that Fergie might go with the diamond and use Valencia in a shuttler role to contain Cole, although he hasn't used this yet, and it seems like an incredibly risky move for such an important match.

Tactical Battles

What this means of course is that we could be seeing one of many different matches take place. It could be the Mazacar against the diamond, or against the 4-4-1-1, or a wider 4-2-3-1 against the diamond or against the 4-4-1-1. Each has its own consequences:

Mazacar vs Diamond

You'd have to assume Fergie's use of the diamond might have been geared towards this match. By clogging up the centre, he'd go a long way towards gaining defensive stability and countering Chelsea's creative threat by stifling their ability to maneuver. It would be a largely reactive approach, and would allow the Chelsea fullbacks to go forward unchallenged, while relying on slower build-up and fluidity from the front 3 to create chances. The end result would likely be a slower match with limited opportunities, largely dependant on Chelsea's fullbacks ability to create for goals.

Mazacar vs 4-4-1-1

This would be the most open possible battle. Both teams have had astounding attacking ability whereas their defense have been underwhelming, and this would likely result in lots of goals. United could expose Chelsea's fullbacks or keep them back and stop them from offering width, but with only two players in midfield, none of which are ballwinners, the Mazacar would have lots of space to exploit and create. A back-and-forth match would ensue, and in the end, it is not going to be something Ferdinand relishes.

Bertrand 4-2-3-1 vs 4-4-1-1

This would be more of a reactive move from RDM. The inclusion of Bertrand would help contain Valencia and Rafael as well offer more direct width. This would be somewhere in between the previous alternative. While both teams still have great attacks, Chelsea's more defensive stance would limit both teams' ability to create, while not depriving the creative players from space to function in.

Bertrand 4-2-3-1 vs Diamond

Should both managers go with their reactive tactics, it would result in the dourest matchup of all. United would dominate possession, although Chelsea's newfound width could expose them on the left flank. Should this occur, Moses would be the better alternative, although I can't see Fergie persisting with this formation for long.


In all, there are many ways this could go. I'm largely optimistic about Chelsea's chances, although I'm still rather wary of what Fergie might throw at us, and how RDM can deal with it. I sincerely hope this doesn't repeat itself:

My prediction: 2-1 Chelsea (Torres, Hazard, Rooney)


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Luke Shaw is a Chelsea Fan

Luke Shaw is a Chelsea fan and that's cool.

Seriously, it IS cool. Not because of Shaw, who is a fine, young player and him being a fan would be helpful should we ever try to sign him (and we might). He's not the only one, I've seen a lot of young players in the last couple of years attest to being Chelsea fans (and not necessarily Chelsea targets). Lukaku is a great example. I've noticed that in my time as a fan, the number of Chelsea supporters has gradually risen, especially among younger people. Why? Gloryhunting.

There are basically 3 ways you become a fan: Legacy, Gloryhunting, Chance. The legacy people are born into football-loving families where someone is a huge fan and brainwashes you into doing the same when you're a child. That's why a lot of families support the same club and why there are a lot of die-hard fans who are much too young to know anything about the club. They started young. I will do this to my children. They will watch Chelsea on TV. In fact, I have already started forcing Chelsea on my nephews (my niece knows the Chelsea anthem and doesn't bat an eye when I ask who the best team in the world is when answering 'Chelsea'). She will outgrow it, probably, but that probably wouldn't happen with my own children, who will be exposed to it every weekend frokm the time they are born to the time I die (assuming I'm still an active fan, and I probably won't be).

Chance are those that become fans by a random occurrence. Jabol, for example, is one, since he started to like Barcelona when he visited the country as a child. It has nothing to do with the team itself and just him liking the club. I think Tom is similar, since he told me he started supporting Liverpool because he simply liked 'the guys in the red shirts better' or something like that. At one point or another you start to like a club for a random reason and sometimes it just sticks and you become a staunch supporter.

And then there are gloryhunters: people who start supporting a team because it's winning and when they stop winning they move on to another winner. I constantly saw this growing up it was always seen as something despicable even though it isn't really (unless you're a grown-up gloryhunter). Gloryhunters basically have a casual interest in a sport but are not particularly invested to it so their alliegances are easy to change. They go where they feel more rewarded, and that's where the winners are. I knew a kid when I was growing up who claimed to be a Madridista for years and got taunted for it, but he defended them. Until Valencia won the league and UEFA double and Madrid finished 4th. Then he switched to Valencia. Everyone jumped on him and he admitted to being a gloryhunter and everyone was sure he would switch back the next year, so did he. It's been nearly 10 years and he still supports Valencia quite avidly. At some point in that year as a Valencia fan he really embraced football and formed a bond with the club that made him a real fan.

I, personally, didn't like football until I was about 14-15. I mean, I liked it, but I didn't watch it or follow it or really know much about it other than some famous players and playing FIFA. As a kid, I 'supported' 6 different teams in Israel, ManU, Aston Villa, Liverpool, Bayern, Inter, Deportivo, Real Madrid and Barcelona. By support, I mean that if someone asked I would claim to support that team. Then when I got older I started liking football more and so I watched it more on TV. At that time the Prem got a lot of coverage on Spanish cable and so I watched a lot of the emergent Mourinho-led Chelsea. They won a lot, they had a lot of players with funny names on their shirts, so I started supporting them. And, by chance, that stuck. I started as a gloryhunting fan who didn't care if his team lost and became an avid supporter who spent 3 before an important exam playing Chelsea vs. ManU over and over again on the PES to ease the pain of Moscow. From not caring that Chelsea had reached the CL semis and lost to Marseille to seeing Drogba take a half-step to see Neuer dive to the left before cooly sliding it to his right in Munich being one of my happiest moments.

That's why you shouldn't be too hard on guys like Hisashi for being annoying gloryhunters. They're young, they barely care about the sport,they just want to win. One of two things will happen, either they will never care and keep being gloryhunters (or abandon the sport altogether) or at some point they will start caring and adopt a club forever. It's a part of growing up. Not everyone is born into a football-loving family and not everyone gets to see go to the Camp Nou as a kid.

How does this relate to Shaw? Well, as I said, I have noticed more and more Chelsea fans over the past few years. It's easy to explain. People my age, in their early 20s, are not familiar with a poor Chelsea. Even when I was a kid, there was Zola and UEFA adventures and sexy football. Lukaku himself is a big Hasselbaink fan. But now, every year more and more kids are maturing having grown up with Chelsea as a top club. A lot of them were gloryhunters who have stuck as Chelsea fans. In 10 years, if Chelsea can maintain a Top 4 status, the new Hazards and Gotzes and Messis of 2023 will have been born in the 2000s. That means that for them, joining Chelsea would be like joing ManU and Barca has been to many fopotballers in the last decade. They would DREAM of joing the club. This is a club that was huge and successful when they were just toddlers. Fast forwards to 2030-2040, and a lot of these new football legends will be born into families which support Chelsea, and that's how, thanks to gloryhunting and a sugar daddy (and a few decades of success), a club can buy itself status as one of the biggest clubs in history.

More and more players are emerging, like Shaw (who, admittedly, might be a legacy fan (he probably is)), who see Chelsea as a 'proper' top club. In all likelihood, every year Chelsea will have more fans and by extension, more players who fancy playing there. It hasn't even been a year since we first won the CL, and not even a decade has passed since our first Premiership title (2nd after the league win in the 50s).

This might be a very laboured way to make a rather easy point, but I just really love the fact I have seen with my own eyes how the club I love has established itself as a top club not only on the field, but in people's minds as well. I look forward to bemoaning Exeter City's sugar daddy ruining football in 2050 as I reminisce about clubs with proper history like the Blues.


Make America Great Again
Location is different than chance. While a lot of people don't change allegiances when they move, it is still pretty common. Same thing with living near a stadium even if no one in your family is a fan.


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It's chance in the sense that if you lived somewhere else you wouldn't be a fan of that team. By chance I just mean that it's a random aspect or characteristic of the club that makes you start supporting it.