Nike’s Assimilation of Chelsea FC is complete

Want to but some Spurs merchandise? Just head over to ChelseaMegastore.com. No seriously.

[Ed. Note: Not everyone cares about brand and design issues the way I do, and some people really like Nike stuff. But keep reading, because it gets worse toward the end.]

A few days ago I posted some thoughts on what to expect from Chelsea FC’s new kits from Nike. Those unis dropped this morning (two of the three, anyway), so let’s have a look.

Relatively inoffensive at first glance. Very minimalist (which with Nike is a nice way of saying they have no ideas.) And as always, they’re Nike first and the club second. Stay tuned – more on this in a minute.

Here are closer looks. Continue reading “Nike’s Assimilation of Chelsea FC is complete”

Chelsea’s New Nike Kits: Five Things to Look For

Nike football design eats every dick in the bag.

I’m not a fan of Nike soccer (hereafter referred to as “football”) design, so it was not a happy day when the new kit agreement was announced. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy about the £zillion/year they’re giving us, but since the news broke I’ve been buying all the Adidas merch I can afford because it’s going to be at least 15 years before I buy anything new.

Damn shame, too – I actually like much of their football (herafter referred to as “throwball”) design. I know a lot of you hate the U of Oregon’s throwball unis, but I find a lot of it to be innovative and stylish. YMMV.

Anyway, I’ve been thinking about what we can all expect from the next decade and a half of kit abominations. Take notes – here’s what you can look forward to.

1: BASEBALL SLEEVES!

Bet your mortgage on it. Continue reading “Chelsea’s New Nike Kits: Five Things to Look For”

What Should Chelsea Do in the Transfer Window?

Has there been a time in recent years when Chelsea had fewer things to worry about in January?

PedroNormally this time of year there’s a great deal of chatter about what teams will do (and ought to do) in the January transfer window, and Chelsea supporters have traditionally enjoyed the winter mini-silly season as much as anyone.

This year, though … January 2017 feels different. Continue reading “What Should Chelsea Do in the Transfer Window?”

What Does the Chelsea vs Hull Heat Map Tell Us?

Alonso in the “Garysitter” role, Kante playing holding mid in the attacking third, and Hazard is afraid of land sharks…

I’ve been pondering the heat map from the Hull match in light of the ESPN FC story on who wins and who loses in Conte’s alleged 3-4-3 system. I say alleged because for the moment the roles still strike me as … fluid.

You can find all the heat maps for the game at WhoScored.com. I have tried to sort of turn that data into a digestible abstract of the detailed maps, although I admit up front there might be places where my map is a bit misleading (due to the fact that players run around a lot).

So here’s my graphic:

Chelsea vs Hull heat map

Continue reading “What Does the Chelsea vs Hull Heat Map Tell Us?”

Chelsea vs Hull: Better. Sort Of.

Antonio Conte’s tactics today give us a hint of where he’s heading and the result was positive. Still, many questions remain.

This morning’s 2-0 win over Hull was a decided improvement over our last couple of league outings, the most recent of which provoked a detailed critique from me last weekend. That posting proved highly controversial, as a number of people were outraged at my argument despite having clearly not read it.

The main development today was the deployment of a three-man back line. Sort of. Continue reading “Chelsea vs Hull: Better. Sort Of.”

Antonio Conte has NO IDEA what he’s doing

The new Chelsea manager is in way over his head, and his own stubbornness is his worst enemy. And ours. Abramovich should give him one week to demonstrate that he’s willing to adapt.

Pigheadedness is a bad quality in a manager. And new Chelsea man-in-charge Antonio Conte is so pigheaded he makes Jose Mourinho look like a new age couples counselor by comparison. Continue reading “Antonio Conte has NO IDEA what he’s doing”

Racist thugs on Paris subway platform do not represent Chelsea FC supporters: #ktbffh

Pick a football site, any football site. Right now the raging topic of discussion is the abominably racist behavior of some Chelsea fans on a Paris subway platform in advance of the club’s Champions League Round of 16 match vs. Paris St. Germaine yesterday. What the heck, try The Guardian.

If you know football, you know that the Blues have a history. Their legendary hooligans, the Headhunters, rated their own chapter in How Soccer Explains the World, and if you go back a few decades you’ll learn that once upon a time the racism infesting the club’s fan culture was so vile that they abused their own black player. Continue reading “Racist thugs on Paris subway platform do not represent Chelsea FC supporters: #ktbffh”

Chelsea 2 : 4 Bradford City: Three Thoughts

Well, then. Time for some quick thoughts on today’s FA Cup debacle at the Bridge.

1: Time to rethink that transfer talk?

Just yesterday Jose Mourinho was insisting that Chelsea has no interest in shipping players out or bringing new ones in. He’s happy with what he has. He trusts what he has.

“The window is open, but what I can say is I like them, I need them and I trust them,” he said. “I cannot select the same 18 players every game — I only can play 11. Salah is not playing a lot, Schurrle more than him. They are players that play for us in every competition. Even in the Champions League. I count on them.” Continue reading “Chelsea 2 : 4 Bradford City: Three Thoughts”