A Note from a Chelsea Fan
Whether the Premier League is the best league in the world can be debatable, but that it is the most competitive there is little to no doubt about that. If anything, it has more derbies than any other league, with at least six leading clubs (though, while discussing the possible contenders for the title race this season, in my previous post, I’ve deliberately overlooked Tottenham Spurs for reasons I hope to explain some time to come) fiercely competing for just four spots to qualify for the Champions League. Its leading competitiveness also lies in the fact that teams at the very bottom of the table, desperately struggling against relegation and for a mere survival, can defeat those at the very top, on any given day and at any given place. Each game, therefore, is a challenge, a physical battle till the last whistle; that is, nothing is definite, nothing is decided until the last second; no early score guarantees victory and no early defeat induces complete and unconditional surrender.
In general, football games are quite unpredictable; they conspicuously defy mathematical rules. And this is even more so with the Premier League.
As a Chelsea fan, I can only hope to see the Blues win the title race. But this is obviously an ambitious HOPE, for this time round the race would probably be unbelievably tough and more challenging. A modest and more reasonable hope, then, would be to see Chelsea secure a spot in top four to guarantee their place in world’s elite clubs for the European Champions League.
To that end, however, there is a dire need of one and only one thing: consistency. While inconsistency dearly cost Chelsea the Champions League this season, it is how Manchester City wrote a new chapter in the history of the Premier League last season: they ran rampant because they were consistent.
With the sullen and morose Antonio Conte gone and Maurizio Sarri in charge, one can only hope that Chelsea (re)discover themselves for better and consistent results. As a banker turned-coach, Sarri surely understands the importance of staying alter, always; and never flagging or losing focus on aggressiveness and the hunger to win.
In the coming hours, Arsenal will certainly offer Chelsea and Sarri a testing ground, and the coming months will bear witness the consistency or inconsistency they will display, which is sure to define where they end up when the season closes.