Date: 21st July 2020 at 8:33pm
Written by:

Greetings, Chidge and the whole crew!

I’m posted out in the concrete jungles China (aka the Middle Kingdom) as a teacher. Been listening to your show on and off for the last 3 years.  It’s been a great companion to my after hours of cleaning the classroom and other trivial tasks (writing reports and grades I have be without the show, or else I start replacing students with players – “Ross Barkley shows enthusiasm but needs to reflect on his mistakes…”).

Being from the Pacific Northwestern US, we’ve had a decent football (yes, soccer) culture. Seattle Sounders are my MLS team and there’s a great rivalry down the road with the Portland Timbers. Still, it’s just not the Premier League!

I’ve been a Chelsea fan since around 2008. These days, I’ve come to expect the disgusted look I get from most English friends I meet here when I reveal my Chelsea allegiances. Followed by demands for an explanation. Why?!

Probably started innocently enough – at that point the games most available on American television would feature “big 6”, and I’d had enough of the Man U bandwagon, so I supported a club that gave the Red Devils a good rivalry and had a few familiar faces (ie Lampard, JT…).  But one of my favorite, proudest Chelsea moments was spent at a very loud, very cocky Bayern Munich supporter’s flat during a Champions League final. You know the one. *wink* The magic of Didier Drogba… we’ve nothing quite like that now. In China, most of my fellow supporters are from African continent. I’ve made some delightful friendships through the years thanks to Chelsea!

On to the current season, I think you and your guests have put right: we’re disappointed at times, and yet who saw us ever fighting for top 4 with the departure of Hazard and a bunch of youngsters?  Still, it pains me to watch all of this “pissession” as I am terming it. We get the ball, show a few fancy flicks, then camp outside the penalty area until someone makes a mistake with everyone forward. It’s just too frequent, and happened a lot under Sarri as well. We’ve got to be a little more ruthless. I just don’t see that in the likes of Abraham. Most of the time I see him pouting over a squandered chance.

I believe Kepa must be more of a leader in the back, but I see far more of the defensive faults on the men just in front of him. Rudiger is a nut job, Christensen lacks discipline (shame, after a memorable season under Conte), and Zouma, for his hustle and aerial presence, just makes poor decisions. Selling Cahill was such a headscratcher.  I’m shocked we haven’t put a little cash down on a centre half or left back.  Is Chilwell worth the price?  Would recruiting John Terry help tidy this mess?

Yes, Chidge, I was a bit “fucked off” (your words, haha) as you waffled on about Americans struggling to say irony and warriors… really though? Must be thinking of those heavy East Coast accents? (think Boston, New York, Jersey) I struggle with them as well…. That said, I always know you’ll get back on track sooner or later!

Many, many thanks for the podcasts, articles, commiserations, and laughs!

Cheers all, stay true to The Blue!

-Jeff

PS:

It’s the dream to one day take my young son to the Bridge. I’ll be keeping my eyes out for you lot!