In our look at the latest Chelsea-related news stories from the media, Paul Merson says Chelsea fans can take encouragement from last weekend’s performance against Liverpool, former Blue Mario Melchiot calls for Tammy Abraham to show a nastier edge to his game and Grimsby Town’s James Hanson hopes to be part of another shock win at Stamford Bridge.
These stories are samples pulled from external media sources. They do not represent the views or position of Chelsea Football Club.
Merson encouraged by Chelsea performance
Writing in his weekly column on Sky Sports, former Arsenal player Paul Merson has said Chelsea fans can draw a lot of positives from the Blues’ performance in Sunday’s match against Liverpool.
The self-confessed Blues supporter said he was pleased with the team’s display in the 2-1 loss to the Reds and believes we can build on it during the course of the season.
‘Look at Chelsea now and you think they could get in the top four. They've given a lot of people heart, and it'll give Frank heart,’ said Merson.
‘I think expectations have gone up now. After that performance, you're looking at top four. When you see what's around, you're looking at top four.
‘With losing the game, it's backfired in a way - the expectations have gone up rather than down. I've seen enough yesterday to say they'll be in the mix.’
While Merson feels the Blues still have some way to go to catch Liverpool and Manchester City, he believes we are in good shape when compared to our other top-six rivals Manchester United, Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur.
‘Chelsea looked like one of the better lot of the six yesterday,’ he added. ‘The other two are head and shoulders above, head and shoulders. But they (Chelsea) haven't been able to buy anyone, other teams are spending 80, 90, 100 million quid.
‘It's about bringing the kids through. If Frank's not the manager, Tomori, Mount and Abraham wouldn't just be in the team, they'd be out on loan. He could've easily played the experienced players and made life easy for himself. He's put the club ahead of himself.’
Melchiot wants Abraham to be nastier
Former Chelsea defender Mario Melchiot has told TalkSport Tammy Abraham can become a better striker if he is able to channel his inner ‘bad boy’ and add a nastier edge to his game.
After scoring seven goals in the Blues’ previous three Premier League matches, Abraham was kept off the scoresheet against Liverpool and Melchiot feels the situation could have been different if the striker had displayed a physical presence similar to Didier Drogba or Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink.
‘Tammy Abraham is a real finisher but, as much as I like him as a player, he’s sometimes got to be more of a bad boy,’ said the Dutchman.
‘You know why? When you play against players like Virgil van Dijk, the striker has to have a bit of badness in him. A bit of nastiness.
‘OK, look at the guys I played against, like Ryan Giggs. He was so elegent, he dribbled beautifully, but trust me, if I kicked him he would have got up and either kicked me back or found a way to do it – he was one of the best players I played against.
‘Tammy needs that too. As cute as he looks, he’s young, fresh and exciting to watch, he needs to have that.
‘If you look at Drogba, Hasselbaink, these guys weren’t cute when you played against them.
‘Be a little bit of a bad boy! Bring that badness out of you!’
Hanson looks to stun Blues again
Having played for Bradford City in their shock FA Cup win over Chelsea in 2015, Grimsby Town striker James Hanson has told the Grimsby Telegraph he would like to be part of another surprise result when his team visits Stamford Bridge on Wednesday.
Hanson helped Bradford to come from two goals down to stun the Blues four years ago and hopes to use that 4-2 win to inspire the Mariners for their Carabao Cup visit.
‘They’re memories that will last forever for me and all the boys that played that day,’ said Hanson, who won the League Two Player of the Month award for August after scoring five goals for his new club.
‘There are always cup upsets, obviously with Bradford while I was there, and other teams that have gone to places like that and won.
‘We can take hope from that, and go to Chelsea under no pressure and enjoy the game.
‘I’ll pass my experience on to the lads if needs be, but first and foremost, I think you’ve got to enjoy those games, regardless of the result.
‘Ninety-nine times out of 100, they would beat us. Hopefully luck is on our side, we can ask as many questions we can of them, and cause a bit of an upset.’