So it turns out Todd Boehly is going to have to do some work on his dressing room pep talks.
The Chelsea owner likes to think of himself as the smartest man in the room but it appears that marching into the players’ inner sanctum a few days before the biggest game of their season and calling them embarrassing was not the motivational game-changer he thought it would be. Who knew?
Three days on from Boehly’s idea of a call to arms, Chelsea’s season is over. The players he has assembled at a cost of over £600m did not let themselves down in the second leg of their Champions League quarter final against Real Madrid as they tried to overcome a 2-0 deficit from the first leg at the Bernabeu.
If they had taken their chances, they might have made this an uncomfortable evening for the 14-times winners of this competition.
But the harsh reality is that they were not good enough to take their chances. N’Golo Kante missed one early in the first half and Marc Cucurella missed another just before the interval.
Rodrygo (2nd right) scored twice as Real Madrid beat Chelsea to progress to the Champions League semi-finals
Rodrygo (centre) finished off a devastating counter-attack to end any hopes of a Chelsea comeback in the quarter-final
The Brazilian forward (right) made no mistake from close range as the visitors took a three-goal lead on aggregate
Better teams with better players would have seized those chances. Chelsea huffed and puffed but Madrid looked a different class to them in Spain and when it really mattered, they looked a different class to them here, too.
Two second half goals from Rodrygo put Chelsea’s forlorn hopes of winning this tournament out of their misery. A 2-0 victory on the night might have flattered Madrid slightly but a 4-0 aggregate triumph did not.
Chelsea have become a misshapen, bloated, over-entitled, over-valued mess of a club under Boehly, whose prediction of a 3-0 win for his team last week looks dumber and dumber by the day. Against a team as clever and clinical as Madrid, Chelsea simply got what they deserved.
Madrid will likely face Manchester City in the semi-final now, a clash that will feel like the final. Carlo Ancelotti’s side will be going for a 15th European Cup. City will be trying to win it for the first time and if Pep Guardiola’s side will be favourites if they protect their 3-0 lead over Bayern Munich on Wednesday night, Madrid seem to wear a cloak of invincibility in this competition. They wore it again on Tuesday.
Chelsea have now lost four games in succession since Frank Lampard took over as caretaker manager but this defeat was not his fault. Chelsea are already thought to have made approaches to former Bayern boss Julian Nagelsmann but persuading a leading coach to come to the Bridge with Chelsea in this state of disarray and no prospect of European football is going to be a hard sell. Chelsea is a super-yacht heading for the rocks. Turning it round is going to take time.
Rodrygo performed Cristiano Ronaldo’s trademark celebration as he scored a massive goal for the Spanish giants
Todd Boehly’s pre match words of ‘motivation’ didn’t have the desired effect as his side’s season effectively came to an end
Rodrygo grabbed his second goal from close range after some brilliant individual play from Federico Valverde
Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga looks dejected as Rodrygo is congratulated by his Madrid team-mates close by
No wonder that Chelsea legend Didier Drogba could barely disguise his disgust at the way Chelsea has been mismanaged by its new owners.
Chelsea (3-4-1-2): Arrizabalaga 6; Chalobah 5.5, Silva 7, W Fofana 6.5; James 7, Fernandez 6.5 (Sterling 67min, 6), Kovacic 6.5, Cucurella 6 (Mudryk 68, 6); Kante 6; Gallagher 6.5 (Felix 67, 6.5), Havertz 6.5 (Mount 77).
Booked: Cucurella, James, Mudryk.
Manager: Frank Lampard 6.5.
Real Madrid (4-3-3): Courtois 7; Carvajal 7 (Nacho 82), Militao 7.5, Alaba 6 (Rudiger 46, 6.5), Camavinga 7; Valverde 6.5, Kroos 8 (Ceballos 76), Modric 7; Rodrygo 8.5 (Asensio 81), Benzema 6 (Tchouameni 71, 6), Vinicius Junior 7.
Scorer: Rodrygo 58, 80.
Booked: Militao. Manager: Carlo Ancelotti 7.5.
Referee: Daniele Orsato (Italy) 6.
‘I don’t recognise my club any more,’ Drogba said after the match. So much for the hope that Chelsea might be able to emulate the march to glory that Drogba and his teammates went on in 2012 when they turned a misfiring season around. That team was stocked to the brim with leaders. This team is not.
The team that won the final that year by beating Bayern Munich in their own stadium was a very different team to the collection of talented but callow men that has been so hastily and haphazardly assembled by Boehly and which has been struggling so painfully to find any sort of chemistry as it has tumbled down the Premier League to the place where it now lies, just below mid-table, without any hope of making the top four.
To some consternation among the home support, Lampard chose his starting eleven conservatively. He left both Raheem Sterling and Joao Felix on the bench and picked a side with Kai Havertz as its attacking fulcrum. The players in the starting line-up had only scored 17 goals between them all season.
Ten minutes had gone when Chelsea spread the ball wide to Reece James, who was playing at right midfield, and James drove in a searching cross to the near post. The ball broke to Kante, ten yards out and alone, the goal yawned and Kante mishit his left-foot shot so that it bounced down into the ground and harmlessly wide. Lampard turned away from the action and put his head in his hands.
It was a bad miss but it seemed to unsettle Madrid. It offered them a glimpse of what could be. But they weathered a spell of Chelsea pressure and midway through the half, Rodrygo slammed an angled rising drive against the outside of the post and Modric brought a good diving stop from Kepa Arrizabalaga.
Frank Lampard has now lost four games in a row since taking interim charge, Chelsea’s worst run of form since 1993
A big save from Thibaut Courtois denied Marc Cucurella from close range minutes before half-time at Stamford Bridge
But Chelsea stayed in the game. In fact, they did more than that. James was a constant threat down the right – the outstanding player on the pitch in the first half – and the home midfield continued to control the game. But they could not force a breakthrough. Half chances came and went and Madrid survived.
A few minutes before half time, the visitors should have taken the lead. A lovely exchange of passes freed Modric down the right and he hooked curled in a cross to the back post. Vinicius Junior ghosted in front of his marker got to the ball first but it cannoned off his shin and flew well wide.
On the stroke of the interval, Chelsea wasted an even better chance. James, again, was the provider, getting free on the right and driving the ball across the face of the six-yard box. Kante flung himself at it but could not make contact. It fell to Marc Cucurella, much-maligned by Chelsea fans, at the back post.
Cucurella steadied himself and gazed redemption in the face but Courtois, who had been given a hostile reception by the home crowd because of the way he left the club, rushed out to face him. Cucurella hit his shot well enough but Courtois spread himself and blocked it. ‘Thibault, Thibault, you’re a ****,’ the Chelsea fans sang at him as he walked off at half time. A big grin creased his face.
N’Golo Kante also missed two big chances in the area before the Blues were made to pay for their wastefulness
Chelsea’s season is effectively over after their hopes of winning the tournament for a third time were brought to an end
Five minutes into the second half, Chelsea came close again but this time Kante’s close-range effort was blocked by Eder Militao. Militao, who had already been booked, was lucky to escape a second yellow minutes later when he brought down Trevoh Chalobah with a clumsy challenge. The referee waved away Chelsea’s impassioned pleas for a red card.
Their anger at that perceived injustice soon deepened. Reprieved, Militao played a superb ball out of defence to Rodrygo on the right flank, Chalobah sold himself with a flying tackle and Rodrygo skipped past it and slid a ball across the goal.
Benzema missed it but it reached Vinicius Junior at the back post and he cut it back to Rodrygo, who lifted it past two men on the line and into the net.
Rodrygo put the tie out of sight with a tap-in ten minutes from the end and Chelsea’s night was complete when Mykhailo Mudryk pulled a shot wide when he was clean through late on. He was offside anyway.
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Sports Event Casino Handicap Description
|PK||0||It means not giving in to each other, and winning 1 point wins all.|
|0-50||0/0.5||Indicates that when the handicap team is tied with the transferee team, the team betting on the handicap loses 50%.|
|0 loss||0.5||Indicates that when the handicap team is tied with the transferee team, the team betting on the handicap loses.|
|1+50||0.5/1||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 1 point, the team betting on the handicap wins 50% and wins all 2 points.|
|1 level||1||Indicates that when the handicap team wins the handicap team by 1 point, the two teams will tie and win by 2 points.|
|1-50||1/1.5||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 1 point, the team betting on the handicap loses 50% and wins all 2 points.|
|1 loss||1.5||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 1 point, the team betting on the handicap loses all and wins by 2 points.|
|2+50||1.5/2||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 2 points, the team betting on the handicap wins 50% and wins all 3 points.|
|2 flat||2||Indicates that when the handicap team wins the handicap team by 2 points, the two teams will tie and win all 3 points.|
|2 losses||2/2.5||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 2 points, the team betting on the handicap loses 50% and wins all 3 points.|
|3+50||2.5||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 2 points, the team betting on the handicap loses all and wins all 3 points.|
|3 losses||2.5/3||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 3 points, the team betting on the handicap wins 50%, and all 4 points win.|
|3 levels||3||Indicates that when the handicap team wins the handicap team by 3 points, the two teams will tie and win all 4 points.|
|3-50||3/3.5||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 3 points, the team betting on the handicap loses 50% and wins all 4 points.|
|3 losses||3.5||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 3 points, the team betting on the handicap loses all and wins all 4 points.|
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Online betting: This type of play refers to betting while the game is in progress, and the punter can change the bet at any time and make a decision based on the real-time situation of the game.
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