Chelsea-Portsmouth: Slippery Conditions Slide The Blues To Victory

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Chelsea-Portsmouth: Slippery Conditions Slide The Blues To Victory

When I began to play football on a more consistent basis around three years ago, I constantly had an image in my head of a rain soaked pitch and the often gunmetal grey skies of England every match day.

While I have moved beyond that fantasy, Tuesday's match at Fratton Park brought those notions flooding back to me.

Unfortunately, neither team saw a deluge of goals in this must win for either team.

Chelsea moved back to the second spot in the Premier League standings after what should have been an easy win against Wigan at the weekend.

Portsmouth are in a slightly bleaker situation at present. They are currently sitting two points shy of the relegation zone. However, Pompey manager Paul Heart stated in the post match press conference that he is "confident of survival" in the league.

Drogba Bouncing Back?

It seems that Chelsea striker Didier Drogba, is finding his pre-Avram Grant form once again.

The Ivorian gave the go ahead score 12 minutes short of the full time whistle to seal the deal and hand Portsmouth a less than resounding thump closer to packing their Premiership bags and heading to the Championship.

Drogba continued to impress as he saw several goal scoring chances squandered or shut down by the Pompey defense.

If Drogba was controlling things offensively, Petr Chech was certainly keeping the team together on the back side of the pitch.

Despite their best efforts, Pompey strikers were not able to squeeze a single shot past Chech. It seems though, that Pompey would have had a hard time going against Chelsea in the match anyway as only two of their 14 shots were placed on net forcing saves.

Going Forward—or Qunituples and Quagmires

I don't know how often the word quintuple gets tossed around in football, but Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson was quick to squash rumors earlier this week that the Reds could pull out five trophies this year.

I think he was right to do so for two reasons:

1) Yeah, you're Manchester United. God likely hand crafted every member of that squad, but you don't want the team having that much weight on it's shoulders.

2) Sir Alex knows, just like the rest of us do, that the Premiership can be changed around quicker than a baby's diaper at a nursery. This league is shifty at best and he knows that.

I think Chelsea and Liverpool have a chance to challenge right now in the short term—and possibly the long term.

I think Chelsea's chances increase slightly with the return of Michael Essien to the mid-field lineup.

As for Portsmouth, things are unlikely to be as rosy.

Paul Heart was appointed acting manager of the team within 24 hours of Scolari being sacked at Chelsea. However, Gus Hiddink has had more experience than the steward at Fratton Park.

I think it's likely that the team will stay out of relegation trouble this year. The mixed company that they are in from the 13th to the 17th spot in the table is certainly able to throw off the entire relegation table and make it a true battle for those three spots.

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