It’s not always what you think it should be, or what you expect it to be, but it predominantly works just fine for Jose Mourinho. Chelsea faced Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League today, looking to overturn a 3-1 deficit at Stamford Bridge, and the mission was accomplished — eventually.
The game finished 2-0 for Chelsea as Demba Ba struck with a 87th-minute winning goal to put Chelsea through in dramatic fashion. Most of the talk before the game surrounded Mourinho and how he would have no choice but to select an attacking lineup and be offensive from the start. That didn’t quite happen, but Chelsea got through anyway. There can be no complaints.
Chelsea played Samuel Eto’o up front on his own again a relied on support from midfield playmakers, as David Luiz also came in to provide additional cover in midfield. Chelsea were not exactly defensive, but they weren’t offensive either. They were orthodox, firstly making sure not to concede and then playing for goals from set-pieces or from the talent they did have in attack.
Although a more attacking Chelsea was to be expected, that did not happen and you must now credit Mourinho. He does things his way, he sticks to his philosophy and with the trophies he has won in his career, very few people can argue with him. His team barely made it through, but they did make it and that’s all that counts.
It was eventually an all-out attack from Chelsea as the clock ticked down and Mourinho threw on another two strikers. Really, he had no choice, but it did make for an exciting and dramatic finish to the game. That’s not always the case with a Mourinho team, but what is familiar is the result — the win. He knows all about winning.
Now safely into the semifinals, Mourinho and his Chelsea squad will be a team others would be wise to avoid. You may think you already know what Mourinho and his team will do, how to beat them and be ready for it. The trouble is, though, we all know what he will do and that’s what he always has done — win. Putting a halt to that has rarely ever played out as you think it will, as PSG just found out.