Chelsea FC manager Jose Mourinho is delighted with his side’s defensive performances and has stressed on how hard they have worked as a team to achieve this.
Chelsea have the best defensive record in the league currently having conceded just 22 goals in 29 Premier League matches. Despite making a fairly shaky start to the season when they looked a bit vulnerable at the back, they have improved by leaps and bounds over the past few weeks. The Blues have kept nine clean-sheets in their last 13 league matches as their unbeaten run since December has propelled them to the top of the league. Much of this improvement at the back has been credited to the return in form of John Terry, who has formed a wonderful partnership with perhaps Chelsea’s most consistent defender in the last two seasons – Gary Cahill. Apart from Terry and Cahill, the rise of Cesar Azpilicueta this season has been nothing short of phenomenal as well.
Jose Mourinho has shifted him to a left back role this season and he has impressive enough to bench someone like Ashley Cole. Azpilicueta has been solid both defensively and offensively and Mourinho has labelled the Spaniard as someone who has been “unbeaten” this season. The Chelsea manager has also stressed on how much work they have put in as a team to regain this defensive organization in studying opponents and implementing those studies on the pitch.
“We work, we prepare matches, we analyse opponents. You try to find the best balance.
“Defensively you try to make a shape, you try to find a balance. I like Ivanovic playing right-back more than as a central defender.
“I like a lot the stability of Cahill and the understanding of Cahill with John.
“And I think at this moment Azpilicueta is unbeatable. For many, many matches I haven’t seen one player beat Azpilicueta in an individual duel.
“The team is compact, we have a good balance, we are playing well defensively.
“We were all calm. No mistakes, no defensive mistakes. They had control of the ball and of the game but they didn’t scare us. That’s a good feeling.
“We were very mature. You have to cope with what the game has to give you and sometimes the game gives you a fantastic game, sometimes the game gives you a difficult game and we coped very well with a difficult first half.
“When you are not on the top of your game, but you feel they are not very dangerous, keep calm and you wait for your moment.” – The Chelsea manager said.