It’s gone from terrible to slightly above catastrophic for Chelsea’s latest manager. An impressive first half, marked by a goal from Juan Mata in the 13th minute, was defined by Victor Moses’ superb performance. West Ham allowed Chelsea’s best — a collection of the most talented footballers in the league, there is no doubt — far to much time to deliberate.
From there the disintegration began for London’s most beleaguered millionaire. Sam Allardyce asked his side to play with a more physical edge in the second half. The additions of Matthew Taylor and Mohamed Diamé confirmed Big Sam’s desire to make Chelsea’s playmakers get dirty if they wanted to secure three points. Carlton Cole skied over the back of Branislav Ivanovic for the equalizer in the 62nd minute — a 50/50 call for the referee.
For a fleeting moment it looked as though Cole’s goal knocked some life into a listless Chelsea squad. Mata smacked the post off of a beautifully taken free kick in the 65th, However, from then on it was all West Ham. Cole to Diame made it 2-1 in the 85th. A horrific blunder from Ashley Cole led to Modibo Maiga’s insurance marker in extra time at that was it. 3-1, big Sam danced and Chelsea supporters at Upton Park directed their fury at their favourite scapegoat.
Rafa Benitez took a job that was destined for failure, a fact that speaks to desperation or utter confidence — maybe both. Whichever it was, the hyperbolic writing is on the wall. One win in their last seven matches and failure to advance to the knockout stage in the Champions League a strong possibility — what will Roman do next?