Date: 24th August 2011 at 6:30pm
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1. Alex needs a ‘Brazilian’…, that is.

Shane Long’s interception of Bosingwa’s lackadaisical pass to Alex presented an opportunity for Alex to make his case as a starter. But, the modern day David vs. Goliath ended with Alex capitulating with a mere shove and a goal for the visiting team to send the alarm bells ringing four minutes into the first homegame of the season.

To make matters worse, Alex played Long onside from Brunt’s lob and Chelsea could have easily gone into the break two goals down. Thank the heavens for Long’s apparent inability to square the ball.

With David Luiz back in training, Alex’s shoddy performance might have relieved Villas?Boas from a potential dilemma. Let’s hope he gets his caffeine before his next game. Whether it’s for Chelsea or The Old Lady, that’s another question.

2. 4-3-3 just won’t work, for now…

Chelsea needs to go with a 4-4-2 as the starting formation until they can integrate Mata and sign another creative midfielder. Ideally, 4-3-3 would be Chelsea’s best option, given the quality in the forward lineup of Torres, Drogba, Anelka, Sturridge, and Lukaku (Yes, I have purposely left out Kalou for obvious reasons). But, with Lampard developing a gameplay latency and Essien being injured, there is a sincere lack of creativity in the midfield, which ultimately destroys the attacking prowess of a 4-3-3.

With the signing of Mata, and potentially another midfielder before the transfer deadline closes, the increase of flair and vision in midfield will allow Chelsea to sharpen their attack via 4-3-3. With Mata, Chelsea add another Spaniard to the team, and with the added benefit of having played alongside Torres for the Spanish national team, Mata might be the signing The Blues need to get back to opposition demolition.

In the meantime, a 4-4-2 with a midfield of Malouda, Lampard, Mikel, and Ramires should be the preferred formation.

3. Drogba truly is a talisman.

Chelsea had already equalized when Drogba entered the fray. His contribution to Chelsea’s second was at best, negligible. But, even with his first touch failing him multiple times during the match, there was a sense of relief as soon as Drogba replaced a vexed Torres.

Drogba’s incisive vision, physical presence, free kicks, defensive abilities and experience define him as one of the most complete players that Chelsea have. Aside from his temperamental mood and balance, Drogba provides much?needed momentum as soon as he comes onto the pitch.

Even at his age, he still proves to be one of Chelsea’s most important assets and it wouldn’t be surprising if he keeps playing at The Bridge for another two years.

With the signing of Romelu ‘The Next Drogba’ Lukaku for around £20 million, The Blues have found a potential replacement for their number 11 in the years to come. With ample guidance from the ‘Drogs’, Lukaku will hopefully grow into the central striker position.

Didier Drogba tra la la la la. I still don’t get it…