Blogs & Opinion


David Jones wonders whether Chelsea will attack Shakhtar in Champions League on Wednesday

David Jones - David Jones Posted 7th November 2012 view comments

The FA must act with great haste to limit the potential damage of the Mark Clattenburg affair, so concluded our panel on last week's Footballers' Football Show.

With experience of acting on the FA's independent tribunal, Paul Elliott said lessons had been learned by the long drawn out John Terry saga.

There was confusion over how Chelsea had initially let it be known two players had been verbally abused by Clattenburg while he took charge of their defeat to Manchester United, only for the club to later withdraw their complaint towards Juan Mata.

Di Matteo: the Italian's Chelsea team face a tricky tie with Shakhtar

Di Matteo: the Italian's Chelsea team face a tricky tie with Shakhtar

But Keith Curle, manager of Notts County, told us he would take great exception to referees who thought it acceptable even to swear at his players.

It is little wonder Chelsea dropped points in the Premier League again this weekend, and on this week's show we'll ask Dennis Wise how his former teammate Roberto Di Matteo is coping with life in the VERY hot seat at Stamford Bridge.

Christian Benteke is becoming a growing force and has the skill and strength to test even the best defenders in this division.

David Jones
Quotes of the week

We'll also get the inside track on Ian Holloway's move to Crystal Palace from the man who made it happen, Eagles chairman Steve Parish.

Plus, with Scotland searching for a new boss, their former manager, Alex McLeish, will tell us if anyone can bring glory to the Tartan Army.

Fascinating

I'll be at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday evening, when Shakhtar Donetsk are the visitors in the Champions League. I love these nights.

They are fantastic programmes to work on, especially when you're hosting from the stadium, the floodlights are on and the atmosphere crackles with excitement.

Chelsea's defeat in Ukraine two weeks ago actually sets this tie up very nicely, especially with Juventus also in their pool and expected to win themselves on Wednesday against Danish side FC Nordsjślland.

Di Matteo's approach will be fascinating: will he risk exposing his full-backs to Shakhtar's obvious counter-attacking threat, by including his trio of ball players behind Fernando Torres, or will he favour a safety-first policy instead?

And then after Thursday's Footballers' Football Show, Saturday sees me in the second city for Manchester United's visit to Aston Villa live on Sky Sports HD.

It's a freebie for Villa, who won at Sunderland last week to ease rising tensions in their camp and they won't be expected to beat a United side approaching top form in the Barclays Premier League; they haven't at home since 1995!

But Christian Benteke is becoming a growing force and has the skill and strength to test even the best defenders in this division, it could be a really good contest.

United's return of 24 points after 10 games is their highest for six seasons, and having seen off Chelsea and Arsenal they won't expect to slip up on Saturday. We will see.

Catch The Footballers' Football Show, 10pm, Thursday, Sky Sports 1 HD.

back to top

Other Football Experts:

Latest Posts in Football:

Andy Walker

Walker: Celtic 'shocking'

Ronny Deila’s hopes of winning over the club’s fans took a big blow in Poland, says Andy Walker....

Guillem Balague

Balague: Barca training tough

Guillem Balague says Barcelona’s stars will suffer gruelling double sessions during their week at Burton....

Ray Wilkins

Wilkins: Rooney for captain

Ray Wilkins says Wayne Rooney is the "standout candidate" for the England captaincy....

Latest News RSS feeds

Live transfer updates

Liverpool close on full-backs, Tottenham agree to sign Sporting's Eric Dier and West Ham take Carl Jenkinson on loan.

Liverpool target defensive duo

Liverpool are closing on Sevilla left-back Alberto Moreno and Atletico Madrid's Javi Manquillo, Sky sources understand.

Game of the season

Vote for the best Sky Sports Premier League game of 2013/14 – and we’ll replay the best ones on air.

Mourinho: Costa is fantastic

Manager Jose Mourinho thinks new forward Diego Costa is a superb addition to his Chelsea squad.

FA betting ban in effect

The FA's global betting ban affecting players, officials and other club employees has come into effect.

Features

A number of Premier League teams look set to embrace the 3-5-2 once again after its success at the World Cup

A number of Premier League teams look set to embrace the 3-5-2 once again after its success at the World Cup

The World Cup has a long tradition of sparking innovation. The Miracle of Berne may have prevented Hungary lifting the trophy in 1954 but the Magnificent Magyars and their 3-2-3-2 discovered the way to outfox the WM formation.

Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers has his philosophy but there are still lessons to learn from Jose Mourinho

Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers has his philosophy but there are still lessons to learn from Jose Mourinho

"Jose is happy to work that way and play that way and he will probably show his CV and say it works but it's not my way of working. I like to take the initiative in games and let players express themselves.

Southampton situation is a sad one despite club claims

Southampton situation is a sad one despite club claims

“When I said that it wasn’t our intention to sell any players, that was correct – it wasn’t our intention to sell any players.” These were the comments made by Les Reed, Southampton’s executive director, to the Southern Daily Echo last month. Semantics at their finest.