Date:Saturday August 31 2013
Who was it who said the Super Cup Final would, in no way, match the tenseness of that epic night in the Allianz Arena, yes me!
In an epic encounter, in Prague, last night, Chelsea were denied a magnificent European Super Cup win, first by a last kick of extra time equaliser and then by a penalty shoot-out, throw in a red card for Ramires and it`s plain to see what an epic night it was.
This morning, after a sleepless night, yes it affected me that much, the pain of defeat is still there but, hopefully, our youngsters will use the experience of pushing the best team in Europe all the way, to enhance their futures.
Team News - For this UEFA Super Cup Final, in Prague, Jose Mouirnho tweaked his team slightly from the one that started at Old Trafford on Bank Holiday Monday. David Luiz came into the heart of the defence at the expense of John Terry, Kevin de Bruyne missed out altogether with Andre Schurrle dropping back into midfield with Fernando Torres leading the attack.
As for Bayern Munich, they lined up as follows:-
Neuer, Rafinha, Boateng, Dante, Alaba, Lahm, Robben, Muller, Kroos, Ribery, Mandzukic.
with Schweinsteiger missing through injury,
First Half - Chelsea got off to the ideal start, with only eight minutes on the clock, the Europa League winners took the lead. Bayern had been doing most of the pressing but when a defensive clearance broke to Fernando Torres his ball control and lay-off had Eden Hazard running a the Bayern defence. Hazard, sensing the presence of Andre Schurrle out wide, played the perfect ball to set the German in motion. Drifting towards the by-line, Schurrle looked up and played the perfect ball back towards the onrushing Torres, the Spaniard hit the ball first time and Neuer was beaten as the ball flew past him and into the net. The goal has the possibility of, already, being a leading candidate for goal of the season.
The remainder of the half saw both teams create chances. Ribbery, a constant danger on our right flank, had several efforts but all were wide of the far post with Cech looking on comfortably. In fact Chelsea had opportunities to stretch the lead with Torres looking very active. The Spaniard curled a hopeful effort wide of the far post but then, turning sharply, drove a rising effort over the bar from close range.
Second Half - Neither manager made changes at half time an dif Chelsea game plan was to weather early expected Bayern storm the plan was to come unstuck early in the half. With forty-seven minutes on the clock, Bayern were level. Ribbery, given far too much space, cut inside and this time his low, powerful shot, was too good for Cech and the Champions League holders were level.
Bayern exerted more pressure and the Chelsea rearguard did exceptionally well to hold firm, pushing forward, Chelsea had a great chance to take the lead when the Bayern centre-back, Dante, slipped. Schurrle pounced on the loose ball and fed Oscar, unfortunately the Brazilian took an extra touch and the ball was cleared, but only to Lampard who drove his effort, from the edge of the area, over the bar.
Chelsea were reduced to ten men, with four minutes of normal time left, when Ramires received a second yellow card but the blues never gave up and held on to take the game into extra time.
Extra Time - Just as Bayern had started the second half in fine style, Chelsea were to start the first period of extra time wonderfully well. With only three minutes of the first period played, Chelsea were back in the lead when Hazard, skipped inside a challenge and unleashed a low shot that flew under Neuer into the Bayern net.
With ten against eleven, it was always going to be a case of holding on for Chelsea and with the defence sticking to their task and with Cech producing wonderful save after wonderful save, it looked as if we were about to pull off a remarkable win. Unfortunately, with one minute of stoppage time being played, the Chelsea defence was breached. A ball was played in and it took a couple of ricochets before falling invitingly for Martinez to smash the ball into the net with the last kick of the game.
Once again, a contest between these two giants of European football was going to a penalty shoot-out.
Penalty Shoot-Out - As in the Champions League Final of 2012, the shoot-out took place in front of the Bayern support. Oscar stepped forward and beat Neuer with ease, David Luiz strode up and replicated that wonderful spot-kick of the Allianz Arena, Lampard strode forward without a nerve in his body and netted, Cole stepped forward and produced the perfect penalty, hitting the inside of the post and going in and with Bayern having scored all their five, it was left to Lukaku to send the shoot-out into sudden death. Sadly the youngster fluffed his kick and Neuer was to pull off an easy save.
As Bayern celebrated getting some sort of revenge for that Champions League Final on 19th May 2012, all I could do was think of the late headers form Luiz and Ivanovic that could have prevented the game going into extra time, one of which crashed against the bar and the other producing a great save from Neuer, but that`s football I suppose.
Chelsea - Cech, Ivanovic, Luiz, Cahill, Cole, Ramires, Lampard, Hazard (Terry-113), Oscar, Schurrle (Mikel-87), Torres (Lukaku -97)
Unused Subs - Schwarzer, Azpilicueta, Mata, Essien,
Chelsea Scorers - Torres (8), Hazard (93)
Chelsea Yellow Cards - Ivanovic, Cole, Luiz, Ramires, Cahill, Torres, Lukaku
Chelsea Red Cards - Ramires
Date:Saturday August 31 2013
Sending the Mrs Good Wishes (Saturday December 7 2013)
Match Day Moments - Stoke (a) (Saturday December 7 2013)
Rafa Destroyed Terry's Confidence (Saturday December 7 2013)
Dortmund hint at Chelsea target exit (Friday December 6 2013)
Stoke v Chelsea Preview (Friday December 6 2013)
Chickens chasing Lucas Piazon! (Friday December 6 2013)
Juan Mata, Jose Mourinho and the Omissions (Friday December 6 2013)
Hazard - Chasing Arsenal! (Friday December 6 2013)
How Much for Falcao? (Friday December 6 2013)
Name the Starting XI - Stoke (a) (Friday December 6 2013)
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