At the end of May, Arsene Wenger might have won more trophies than Jose Mourinho and the latter might have bite his own words of ‘˜specialist in failure’ as La Liga toppers.
At the end of May, Arsene Wenger might have won more trophies than Jose Mourinho and the latter might have bite his own words of ‘specialist in failure’ as La Liga toppers, Atletico Madrid overpowered Chelsea to a 3-1 thrashing on Wednesday night to ensure a remarkable season will end with a Champions League final meeting for Diego Simeone’s men against cross town rivals Real Madrid.
After the first leg had finished 0-0, Chelsea might have pinned their hopes on the home form. And it did so when former Atletico striker Fernando Torres put the Blues ahead at Stamford Bridge only for Atletico Madrid forward, Adrian Lopez to level it before half-time.
Diego Costa’s second half penalty and Arda Turan’s goal meant that Atletico booked a place in their first European Cup final in 40 years. And deservedly so, Atletico Madrid were in attacking mode and were looking the only side to score rather than their opposition. As for the ‘Special One’, it was a fourth successive semi-final loss for the Chelsea manager after previous setbacks at Real Madrid before returning to London last year.
And with that said, Mourinho’s first season back at Chelsea could now end without a trophy, having failed to deliver European football’s top prize to the club unlike at Inter Milan and FC Porto. Although they are still in the Premier League but will require some ‘luck’ from their rivals Liverpool and Manchester City to slip up in the remaining games.
‘Parking the bus’ tactics have really fallen flat for Mourinho who started up six defenders in the starting eleven in the second leg, although Cesar Azpilicueta was often found in an advanced position down the right flank. With Petr Cech out for the season and other goalkeepers hardly impressing, it remains to be seen if Chelsea recalls their on-loan goalkeeper, Thibaut Courtois from Atletico Madrid. The Belgian stopper was brilliant on his return to the Stamford Bridge.
In the post-match presser, winger Eden Hazard questioned Mourinho’s tactics saying, “Chelsea are not made to play football, we are good on the counter-attack, a bit like Real against Bayern Munich.” If someone has to read between the lines, Hazard has launched a scathing attack on the playing methods of the Portuguese and with the Premier League to play for, the Blues might have do with some luck.
For Atletico Madrid, they were brilliant on the night and with a ‘Madrid derby’ in the Champions League final to look out for. Can Cristiano Ronaldo over power their rivals or will it be Diego Costa’s night to deliver at Lisbon? A tasty affair awaits on May 24.