The highs and lows of being a Chelsea fan

David McDaniel Roar Pro

By David McDaniel, David McDaniel is a Roar Pro New author!

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    Chelsea have just been named EPL Champions for 2016-17 with two games to spare, and what a rush!

    Our first two titles were on our 50th anniversary and 100th anniversary, so I was wondering if we would win the title only every 50 years, but luckily we brought home the goods this season.

    As someone who has been following Chelsea since the late 1970s from New Zealand, it amazes me how easy it is to get Chelsea news nowadays. Why did I choose Chelsea? Blue is my favourite colour, and when I was looking at buying my first Subbuteo team I saw an all-blue set with white socks. I liked the look, checked the name and learned that it was Chelsea.

    During the next four to five years I was getting all my information from the Guardian newspaper and Shoot magazine, which were always a few weeks old.

    When I moved to Australia in 1987 my information sources dried up, but I still found ways to get my Chelsea new fix via magazines and TV. I kept as up to date as I could through the 1990s while I was in the army, and then when the internet came along I had all the information I needed and more!

    One of my overriding Chelsea memories was 2003, and what a crucial year it was when Roman Abramovich bought us, and I almost lost my job as I was constantly refreshing NewsNow to see who we had bought. Frank Lampard, Ashely Cole, Damien Duff, Juan Sebastian Veron, Hernan Crespo, Claude Makelele – it just kept going!

    I was a tad disappointed when local lads like Jody Morris did not get a look in, but John Terry was good enough and he became captain, leader and legend, epitomising the Chelsea spirit.

    Jose Mourinho was a blessing and a curse. He won us titles, but his arrogance, defensive style and lack of faith in youth put me offside. I wanted the Chelsea youth to make the squad and to have their chances instead of being sold and starring at other clubs.

    I was extremely happy when Guus Hiddink took over, and now with Antonio Conte, the perfect manager, I am ecstatic. I also had a chuckle when Jose signed for Manchester United, where he is doing to them what he did to us.

    Nowadays being a Chelsea fan you get called a bandwagoner because they are popular and successful. I have had a few arguments with various people about that, but that’s part and parcel of being a fan of a big club.

    The future is exciting, with a great manager and an amazing new stadium being built. Maybe one day I will get over there to see it for myself.

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    The Crowd Says (26)

    • Roar Guru

      May 14th 2017 @ 7:50am
      Ben of Phnom Penh said | May 14th 2017 @ 7:50am | ! Report

      I must admit the “bandwagoner” title does become tiresome. I just wish people would accept the fact I enjoy watching V-Varen Nagasaki for reasons other than their ubiquitous international appeal.

      Just ignore them mate; I do.

    • Roar Guru

      May 14th 2017 @ 9:31am
      Rick Disnick said | May 14th 2017 @ 9:31am | ! Report

      Be thankful you no longer have ‘The Special One’ managing you.

      Some lesser lights on this forum will tell you he’s just brilliant and love what he’s doing at United. Well…once again United are going to miss out on UCL qualification because of this negative useless pile of @#@$!

      Just go look at the top 5 teams in the EPL. Now have a look at the massive drop away in the GF column — it’s just ridiculous how negative this guy is when it comes to football.

      Sustained success requires attacking attractive football; not boring @#@$ like this man brings to the table. You may win with it, but dynasties are forged upon beautiful football.

      • Roar Pro

        May 14th 2017 @ 11:07am
        David McDaniel said | May 14th 2017 @ 11:07am | ! Report

        Oh I am. We now have the Passionate one who is a joy to watch!

      • May 14th 2017 @ 11:38am
        punter said | May 14th 2017 @ 11:38am | ! Report

        Rick,

        8 Premierships;
        2 in Portugal
        3 in England
        2 in Italy
        1 in Spain, if not the dominance of the greatest club side I have ever seen in Barca, would’ve been more.

        2 Champions league for Portuguese & Italian sides
        15 other cups amongst 5 clubs

        All this paints a different story Mr Disnick to what you are trying to protray.

        • Roar Guru

          May 14th 2017 @ 12:05pm
          Rick Disnick said | May 14th 2017 @ 12:05pm | ! Report

          Do you honestly think I wouldn’t have known those stats before making my comments, punter?

          I never said you can’t win with this style. I said you can’t maintain a dynasty, which is precisely why this man jumps ship (or gets fired) every few years.

        • Roar Pro

          May 14th 2017 @ 1:14pm
          David McDaniel said | May 14th 2017 @ 1:14pm | ! Report

          I agree with Rick, he does what is required to win, buys players just for that season then when he leaves after a few years the club is in a worse state than when he got there. He is in it purely for himself and does not care about the club.

          • May 14th 2017 @ 5:31pm
            punter said | May 14th 2017 @ 5:31pm | ! Report

            Let me see.

            Porto, won 2 premiership in a row in Portugal, won the Europa & then champions league, Porto then 8 out of the next 10 premierships. So not sure that he left club in a worst state.

            Chelsea, won 2 premiership, took Chelsea to 2 semis (first time ever) of Champions league, only left because owner wanted to manage side, came back years later as return of the prodigal son a few & won premiership again. So again not so much there.

            Inter Milan, won Champions league & 2 premierships in Serie A & left club in a pretty good state to move to biggest club in the world.

            Won against Barcelona for 1 title, tried to play Barcelona, Barcelona style & got smacked 5 nil, then changed to a win at all cost winner & won 1 title against the best attacking side ever.
            Left Real Madrid, who has gone on to win quite a few champions league.

            Won another premiership with Chelsea before a player revolt saw him out, but following season Chelsea won the premiership, so again not sure he left club in a worse state.

            • Roar Guru

              May 14th 2017 @ 6:42pm
              Rick Disnick said | May 14th 2017 @ 6:42pm | ! Report

              All that tells us punter is: it wouldn’t have mattered who managed those sides.

              Chelsea would have won regardless with the amount of dosh Roman splashed about initially.

              Only three teams ever win in Primeira Liga, Porto just happens to be one of them. Like you said: they went on to win 8 out of the next 10 premierships — what a @#$%ing hero!

              Read above for Inter, especially given the fiascos that occurred at Juventus only years prior, essentially handicapping them for the Premiership.

              Managing Real would be like me competing in the F1 celebrity race driving a Koenigsegg Agera R whilst everyone else is driving the M3s. Any #@$%er could win.

              Now whilst I don’t agree with David’s view that he leaves a club in a worst state they he inherited it, I do agree it’s all about him. I’d take Wenger over him anytime of the week and twice on Sunday.

              “tried to play Barcelona, Barcelona style & got smacked 5 nil”

              …I think this just sums up how @#@$ the man is.

              “before a player revolt saw him out”

              … as does this.

              He’s weak as p!$$. He’ll never be remembered like a Ferguson precisely because he can’t maintain a dynasty like the true greats of the game.

            • May 15th 2017 @ 5:48am
              punter said | May 15th 2017 @ 5:48am | ! Report

              Let’s not kid yourself Rick, apart from the fluke win last year by Leicester, the EPL has been swapped between Chelsea & Man City in recent times & before that Man U, can anyone remember anyone else winning the premiership outside of those 3.

              Then the next question you need to ask is considering he’s so p!$$weak, why does he get all the F1 spots in the big competitions.

              • Roar Guru

                May 15th 2017 @ 9:02am
                Rick Disnick said | May 15th 2017 @ 9:02am | ! Report

                Let’s not kid yourself punter, I never said he was a bad manager. I said he was p!$$ weak — big difference.

                He’s the one who decided to compare himself to the greats. He’s the one who thinks he’s ‘special’.

                Remind me again why he left Real? I’m going to guess it’s the same reason he was sacked from Chelsea twice. Seems to follow him around now doesn’t it.

                Want to have a bet he’ll be sacked within the next 12 months by ManU? Should do wonders for his career, especially considering he’s only in his mid 50’s.

              • May 15th 2017 @ 11:28am
                punter said | May 15th 2017 @ 11:28am | ! Report

                Rick,

                I have covered why he left Chelsea the first time, it was because the owner wanted his players, Mourinho is well loved my the Chelsea stars at that time Droba, Terry & Lampard.

                Only 2 coaches have coached more years then Mourihno since WWII at RM. RM don’t hold onto their managers for long. Mourinho was also up against the best club side I have ever seen led by Xavi, Inesita & Messi.

                He lost the dressing room at Chelsea after winning the league, so did Raneri at Leicester.

                His record shows him as one of the best. 8 premierships in 4 different countries & 2 champions leagues.

              • Roar Guru

                May 15th 2017 @ 11:33am
                Rick Disnick said | May 15th 2017 @ 11:33am | ! Report

                So he didn’t lose the dressing room at Real?

              • May 15th 2017 @ 11:38am
                Nemesis said | May 15th 2017 @ 11:38am | ! Report

                @punter

                It’s no point arguing with this bloke. His football knowledge is limited to EPL in the past few years & Wikipedia.

                Mourinho is one of the most respected managers in the world. His work with Porto launched his career because he won the Uefa Champions League with a team of technically high quality players but they weren’t high-paid superstars.

                That is he won the most prestigious club trophy in the world without spending big money.

                For people to suggest Mourniho only wins because he’s got great players is to ignore what he did at Porto in 2003/04 season and to ignore that Conte, Ancelotti, Guardiola, etc all won titles with the biggest names in the world playing for them.

                What we saw Ranieri do with Leicester was fantastic.

              • Roar Guru

                May 15th 2017 @ 11:50am
                Rick Disnick said | May 15th 2017 @ 11:50am | ! Report

                No one invited you Stalker.

                I’m sure punter is intelligent enough to have a conversation (not argument) about José without your stellar input.

              • May 15th 2017 @ 12:21pm
                punter said | May 15th 2017 @ 12:21pm | ! Report

                In his last year at RM, they were runners up to Barca & semi finalist in champions league, not bad a for a coach who has lost the dressing room.

                He did have clashes with Real Madrid’s popular captain & GK, Iker Casillas, who had shown great decline in recent years & Mourinho was leaving him on the bench, this upset a lot of the fans & RM media, as well as some of Casillias Spanish national team mates, especially Segio Ramos. Funnily, the following RM managers also played a lot less.
                So while he weren’t particularly popular, didn’t actually lose it.

                But you got me Rick, he lost his one & only dressing room last year in Chelsea, not sure the reasoning as yet, but maybe, he played negative football (M3 football when he had F1 players). So yes I agree last year he lost the dressing room.

    • May 14th 2017 @ 11:23am
      Caltex & SBS support Australian Football said | May 14th 2017 @ 11:23am | ! Report

      I first saw Chelsea play back in the 70s, when they toured Australia, at the Sydney Cricket Ground, with a young Terry Venables their captain and with the high flying No9, Peter Osgood. I followed them from that day on and felt they were my team. Now with Conte, who has done so magnificently well at Chelsea. I am a reinvigorated long time Chelsea supporter, although living 12,000 klm away, who couldn’t watch many of their games on their magnificent run through the EPL, I will be delighted to be watching them play in the UCL on SBS. Go the Blues!

    • May 14th 2017 @ 11:28am
      Nemesis said | May 14th 2017 @ 11:28am | ! Report

      Congrats, David McDaniel. Always nice to see fans who endured the years of failure, get to feel the euphoria of success.

      Particularly, like your reference to Shoot! magazine. From memory, in Australia, we’d get the magazine about 4-6 weeks after it was published. Even then, finding a newsagent who stocked the magazine in Melbourne was not easy.

      Now, all the info available at the click of a button, or touch of a screen.

      • Roar Pro

        May 14th 2017 @ 1:17pm
        David McDaniel said | May 14th 2017 @ 1:17pm | ! Report

        Thanks! To be honest, I didnt’ think if it as failure so often we were fighting above our station. We were the equivalent of the modern day Everton, usually there or thereabouts and when we were relegated it was oh well, it won’t take long to get back up again! 🙂

        • May 15th 2017 @ 4:03am
          Gnasher said | May 15th 2017 @ 4:03am | ! Report

          Still, you could always comfort yourself in the hard times by booing your own black players and singing songs about killing Jews. The only fans threatened with electrocution by their own Chairman.

          • May 15th 2017 @ 6:37am
            Buddy said | May 15th 2017 @ 6:37am | ! Report

            Gnasher – they were “interesting times” in the life of a football fan. Paul Canoville was the first black player at Chelsea, in 1981 and as you mentioned he was roundly booed by a large section of the crowd. In those days there was a huge infiltration at football by the national front and british movement and it was by no means exclusive to South West London. The treatment dished out to players such as Laurie Cunningham and Cyril Regis was outrageous by any standards but the authorities did very little – well nothing in those days. There very few black police in those days, particularly in the metropolitan force – very much a race issue.
            It was Ken Bates who proposed electrifying the fences at Stamford bridge as there were so many issues with fighting and marauding fans. There again, the Daily Mail used to publish a hooligan league and what crew wanted to be bottom?
            They were very bleak days for football in general, culminating in Heysel, The Bradford fire and then Hillsborough. It took 10-15 years too long and a terrible tragedy to begin the reforms that the game so badly needed although I am not so sure it changed racist attitudes as such but at least action is taken these days.

    • May 14th 2017 @ 6:01pm
      Buddy said | May 14th 2017 @ 6:01pm | ! Report

      David, not so many “downs” these days! I began supporting them 50 years ago this May when they lost in the FA Cup Final and my father and all his friends were supporting that side from North London that I took an intense dislike to that grew and grew in a very unhealthy manner during the 1970’s when Chelsea were in decline. I used to travel the country, always skint although it wasn’t such an expensive exercise in those days – prices were reasonable and travel wasn’t too bad either back then.
      The modern club bears no resemblance to the club I grew up loving and I can never be certain as to which I prefer, the romance of the Osgood and Sexton era or the riches of the Roman / Jose et all?
      Many friends and family in the uk still go along and part company with huge sums to watch the modern incarnation and all the trappings. Feelings towards JM are very mixed. Most fans loved havng him at the club but hate having him in opposition in the EPL – he is incredibly divisive due to the resons stated on here but he came to the club and “delivered in spades” so respect was earned I believe. I just sit back and soak it all up these days. I would rather R.A put his money and invested in the team I support rather than anywhere else….the game is different, the rules are different, it is a massive business….but when I visit, I still love walking down Fulham Rd, having a pint or two and venturing into Stamford Bridge…that love doesn’t waver although I am fully engaged in local football here in NSW and the A League. Thanks for the read……

      • Roar Pro

        May 15th 2017 @ 6:53am
        David McDaniel said | May 15th 2017 @ 6:53am | ! Report

        Hi Buddy, I am so very jealous! Who knows, we may have a pint someday before we walk it to the stadium. I can but dream………

      • Roar Guru

        May 15th 2017 @ 10:32am
        HardcorePrawn said | May 15th 2017 @ 10:32am | ! Report

        Indeed, how times change.
        It didn’t seem that long ago when Robert Rosario was considered a big-money buy for Chelsea…

        • May 15th 2017 @ 6:05pm
          buddy said | May 15th 2017 @ 6:05pm | ! Report

          Wow…….there’s a blast from East Anglia as I recall. He played his early career in Hillingdon where Paul Canoville was picked up from but I’m pretty sure Chelsea didn’t buy him in the 80’s In the mid 80’s when there were yo-yoing it was young talent combined with cheap transfers and a few old heads which seemed like a good formula at the time. By the 90’s things were changing though and money was injected so along came the likes of Zola and Gullit and the steady climb began…probably with the defeat to Man U in the FA Cup final of 1994. Three years later they went on to lift the cup and then enjoyed European success in the old European Cup Winners Cup before the current incarnation of European competition and their rise continued from there.

          The game has changed an awful lot in the last 25 years since the formation of EPL. In terms of trophies, Liverpool are a stark reminder of changing times as they totally dominated the game from the late 70’s through the 80’s and in the days when there was no wal to wall coverage you could just about bet your last dollar that Kenny Dalglish and team mates would appear on the TV at least once a week! Although they have remained in the top echelons, it has been a quarter of a century without league success. There again changing times see teams like Portsmouth, Blackpool and Coventry in the lower divisions and West Brom the only EPL side in the Birmingham area.
          Times change and fortunes wax and wane. What would be really good would be if the same sort of conversation can take place about the A League in 25 years time…………..that would spell success!

          • Roar Pro

            May 16th 2017 @ 1:27pm
            David McDaniel said | May 16th 2017 @ 1:27pm | ! Report

            That would indeed be awesome buddy but the A-League is still relatively young and it has strong competition in Australia.

            Fingers crossed we will be having this conversation again in 25 years!

    • May 15th 2017 @ 9:09pm
      Stephen Martin said | May 15th 2017 @ 9:09pm | ! Report

      I think it was Forest that splashed out on Rosario. It was taken as a sign that Clough was losing it.

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