Champions League: As bad as it gets

Champions League: As bad as it gets

FC BASEL 1 (Mohamed Salah 87)


Chelsea qualified for the knockout stages of the Champions League on Wednesday morning (Singapore time), but not in the manner they might have chosen.

The Blues slipped to a deserved 1-0 defeat by FC Basel, failing to register even a single shot on target in the process. Jose Mourinho was not amused.

"We made mistakes defensively," he lamented. "We made mistakes with the ball, we lost easy passes, lost the ball, people were thinking late and we finished with a ridiculous goal. The goal was ridiculous."

Fortunately for Chelsea, Schalke's failure to beat Steaua Bucharest means that they cannot finish above the London side.

Basel will play the German side in the final group game and only a defeat will cost them a place in the last 16.

This was as bad as Chelsea have played under Jose Mourinho and, to his credit, he didn't try to hide it.

"I didn't like anything from the first minute," he groaned, before going on to blame fatigue brought on by international games and the Saturday evening clash with West Ham.

These obstacles, sadly, are non-negotiable. Chelsea have to find a way of coping.

Every time they fall short, as they did here by some distance, Mourinho's two most controversial decisions are reexamined.

Should he have kept Romelu Lukaku and should he have played Juan Mata?

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