Benfica vs. Chelsea Champions League: 5 Lessons Learned

Allan JiangTransfers CorrespondentMarch 27, 2012

Benfica vs. Chelsea Champions League: 5 Lessons Learned

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    Roberto Di Matteo has masterminded a pragmatic and important 1-0 win over Benfica at the Estádio da Luz. 

    It's not just any win, it's an away win and an advantageous away goal, which basically counts as two goals.

    Here are the five lessons learned from tonight's UEFA Champions League game.  

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5. Roberto Di Matteo Is Not Big on Entertaining

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    Ask Roberto Di Matteo if his managerial style resembles Zdeněk Zeman or Fabio Capello, Di Matteo would say Capello.  

    With the full-backs not pushing up, no high line, low risk passes and a rigid formation—Di Matteo's Chelsea are tactically solid. 

    I hate to stereotype but it's very Italian, and how did Chelsea score?

    On the counter attack. 

    It's a pragmatic style of football and if Di Matteo becomes the long term manager, I hope he provides entertainment through his press conference like José Mourinho.  

4. Raul Meireles Shouldn't Start

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    Raul Meireles does a decent job in midfield but he isn't a creative outlet, he isn't an efficient enforcer in midfield, nor does he score goals. 

    He adds depth to the squad, but that's about it. 

    Frank Lampard should always start ahead of Meireles. 

3. Paulo Ferreira > José Bosingwa

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    Paulo Ferreira gassed out towards the end of the game because he gave it his all. 

    Bruno César didn't get past Ferreira and the Portuguese full-back marked him tightly to the extent that the Brazilian took some Hail Mary shots. 

    Pablo Aimar didn't get much out of Ferreira when the Argentine did venture within the right-back's zone. 

    Ferreira may be an average right-back and past his prime, but I'd play him over a mistake prone José Bosingwa. 

2. Ramires and John Obi Mikel

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    It's like yin and yang, Ramires wins back possession whilst John Obi Mikel distributes possession quickly and efficiently.

    An accurate one touch or two touch pass and four combined tackles and interceptions is what I want from Mikel every game. 

    He plays his best when he has someone like Ramires alongside him. 

    One moment, Ramires is flying past Emerson, the next moment, he's harassing Pablo Aimar. 

    Ramires is a wonderful team player for Chelsea. 

1. Fernando Torres' Selflessness

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    There's no comparison between the work rate of Fernando Torres and Óscar Cardozo. 

    Torres has never worked this hard in his life. 

    Throughout the season, he's been hassling the opposing defender, covering his teammates who are out of position and making incisive passes. 

    He's even done a few shifts out wide. 

    Today, he completed more tackles than successful dribbles. 

    His assist to Salomon Kalou could prove to be the decisive moment of the two legs. 

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