Chelsea totally tore up Sunderland, a pretty decent side, today. I have no idea why Paul Wilson wrote that the Blues would be the first to drop out of the top four. Maybe he got too much sun in Mallorca. Something about the coach being new to the Premiership. At this point this Blues team could coach themselves.
They should be considered the favourites. You have the best goalie. A defensive line that gives up the least number of goals. A physical and fast midfield. And a frontman who takes no prisoners as he mows down defenses. Now add to it the touch of creativity that Deco brings and the floodgates open up. Chelsea have the complete package.
Deco was Big Phil Scolari’s first signing in 2008 but fell out of favour after a hot start to his Chelsea career hit by a double blight of injuries and poor performances. He lost his starting place and when Scolari was sacked his Chelsea career was thought to be over. Jose Mourinho his former coach at Porto made overtures for an Inter change and Deco was all set to go when Massimo Moratti made his age an issue.
He decided to stay back but was rarely used by interim coach Guus Hiddink. Indeed, the Hiddink revitalization centered around Frank Lampard, Didier Drogba, and Michael Essien as Deco was pushed back to the shadows. Under Carlo Ancelotti, Deco has reclaimed his starting position and in the two games played so far, his influence has been unmistakable. We should remember before Andres Iniesta was on everyone’s lips there used to be Deco and he won the CL with Porto in 2004 winning MVP honours and then with Barca in 2006.
Against Sunderland, Deco played conductor as he was responsible for the series of sequences that led to Drogba getting tripped up by George McCartney in the box. Frank Lampard was the beneficiary as he converted the penalty. Later, Deco was himself in the spotlight as he scored a wonderful goal off a diagonal shot just off the inside of Martin Fulop’s post. He was applauded by the Sunderland fans for his display as he was substituted by Daniel Sturridge.