Writer: Mikey Delap
Date:Monday October 26 2009
Morning everyone. With news of swine flu, heavy defeats and Sam's outburst at the players it has been a weekend for all the wrong reasons and one we as Rovers fans would be best off forgetting!
But here at Vital Blackburn, I am going to remind you of the pain by working my way through the weekends winners and losers.
So apologies in advance! But I have actually managed to deduce three who can make the winners section this week - an impossible task you may say, like Jason Roberts staying onside for once!
STEVEN N'ZONZI - In the pedestrian tunnel that was our midfield, there was at least one shining light who tried to have a positive impact on the game and it was the young Frenchman.
Any attacks tried to muster were using the aerial prowess of Steven and his flick on led to bringing the otherwise anonymous Morten Gamst Pedersen and El Hadji Diouf into the game.
Whenever N'Zonzi was on the ball he at least looked to press on and make forward passes. He even provided a rare bright moment by creating a dummy that left Frank Lampard and John Terry on their backs.
It wasn't exactly picking from a prize bunch but Steven stood out for me on Saturday evening.
MARTIN OLSSON - Well, well, well. I never though I would be writing these words but Martin was our best defender at Stamford Bridge.
He pressed forward when he could and did at least try and link up down the left with that man Pedersen again. He even came closest to scoring for Rovers when his shot was cleared off the line.
He stuck to his task and tackled fairly safely, on the whole he was again the best of a tame group.
NIKOLA KALINIC - Mastered the art of what Roberts failed to do - trapping the ball and holding off the Chelsea defenders to bring others into the game from further up the pitch.
There were also flashes of the work rate and touch that will make him a success in the long run at Ewood Park.
Granted it may have been difficult to take too much solace from a thirty minute stint on the pitch when we are 5-0 down already but the moments were there, he created panic that Chelsea had not experienced all afternoon. In the end it amounted to very little but I personally saw enought to suggest he is getting there.
KEITH ANDREWS - What in the blue hell was that? Keith was dreadful and looked so shy of confidence it was untrue. Every pass was a backward/sideways one and he seemed scared to tackle Essien/Ballack/Lampard whenever the opportunity arises.
He looked out of place on the pitch with those star players and it may well be worth Sam withdrawing him for a few games to work on his morale.
When Grella is back, the midfield axis should be Grella/NZonzi as far as I am concerned.
EL HADJI DIOUF - Far too much moaning and far too many theatrics when his energy would have been better spent tracking back and getting on the ball with purpose.
He actually seemed more bothered with winning a free kick than looking up at where to run into and/or who to pass to.
The little one-twos, flicks and tricks that make Diouf so imaginative and a good player were not there.
Just as I said the Observer on Sunday morning (shameless plug, sue me!) - it is annoying when you are playing bad, but even more so when you know that he/the team are capable of much more.
LARS JACOBSEN - Subbed on 70 minutes after being given the run around by Joe Cole amongst others and replaced by the slightly more effective Michel Salgado.
It was a tough afternoon for him as he was given the thankless task of keeping the Chelsea livewire at bay on his first team return but he looked lost as he kept things infield and struggled to cover the ground to mark Cole - a sign of someone not comfortable on the day.
He just pipped Ryan Nelsen who gave away the penalty and had a rough afternoon to make this weeks hotly contested loser column!
Date:Monday October 26 2009
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