Misery for Mourinho

Misery for Mourinho
Chelsea striker Demba Ba (centre) can’t find a way past Michael Turner (left) and goalkeeper John Ruddy.

A turgid performance, a bench full of spurned superstars and the likelihood that the season will end without silverware.

You have to wonder how Chelsea fans would have reacted if this had been Rafael Benitez's work.

Chelsea's final home game of the season last night was a low-key, uneventful 0-0 draw that seemed to encapsulate the strange mood around the club.

Jose Mourinho, far from being "The Happy One" as he suggested in the summer, looks utterly miserable.

Oscar, who will star for Brazil in the World Cup, was left out of the matchday squad. Newly-crowned Young Player of the Year Eden Hazard was dropped to the bench.

Yesterday morning's newspapers carried stories of Petr Cech's impending exit. Captain John Terry, whose contract talks are floundering, scribbled programme notes that seemed almost like a note of farewell.

After defeat in midweek by Atletico Madrid and a humiliation last month by Sunderland, there was a chance that this would be an unprecedented third home defeat on the spin for Mourinho.

That chance lingered uncomfortably throughout the game.

It seemed from the start that everyone at Chelsea had swallowed Mourinho's line that the title challenge was over.

There was certainly no urgency about the hosts' play, or even a suggestion that there was a game-plan in mind.

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