Even if Chelsea lost against City and missed out on the chance of playing the FA Cup final against Wigan, they still seem to have pretty good morale. They managed an impressive win against Fulham this week that helped them regain third place in the Premier League standings. They took advantage of the fact that Arsenal only managed a draw against Everton and are now one point ahead of the Gunners before this weekend’s matches. The Blues have had one of their most demanding seasons in the club’s history. They have played over 60 matches and still have a few to go. Despite that, they still look pretty well prepared and very determined.
The match against Fulham was won by Chelsea’s defensive players. Terry managed to score twice and Luiz helped his team win by a three goal difference. The Brazilian managed to break the ice with a stunning shot from well outside the box.
According to Metro, it looks like Benitez’s strategy paid off big time. Even though he might have sacrificed a place in the FA Cup final by resting Terry and some other important players against Manchester City, he managed to maintain a great chance of finishing third this year. Qualifying for next years’ Champions league is a priority and the FA Cup and Europa League are considered secondary objectives. Chelsea are used to winning important competitions and the fact that they missed out on both Premier League and Champions league trophies this year was a real disappointment.
Benitez expressed a couple of his ideas after the match against Fulham. He pointed out that even if Terry managed to score twice, his place in the starting eleven is not secure. The Spaniard sent out some hints that Chelsea’s captain may not start against Liverpool. This is probably part of his strategy meant to keep all his players ready no matter what. With a few matches left it is very important that all of the Blues’ players keep their heads in the game.
Chelsea’s coach was asked about his position and the fact that Terry is the team captain, but is not a team regular. The Spaniard responded that the team is more important than a single player.