The Champions Cup, the America version, continued on Saturday night as Chelsea came from a goal down to defeat PSG on penalties. The Blues finish up on their American excursion with a tie against Barcelona on Tuesday.
Victor Moses got Chelsea’s equalizer in the second half against PSG and played for 69 minutes and won the Man of the Match award to justify the words of his manager, Jose Mourinho, who said that the Nigerian features prominently in his plans for the coming season.
Moses, who was bought from Wigan in 2012 for about £8.5million won the Europa League with the Blues in 2013 but was subsequently shipped out on loan on the resumption of Mourinho as manager.
He was sent first to Liverpool in 2013 and then to Stoke City in 2015, where he showed glimpses of the talent that made Chelsea go all out to get him four years ago.
And in the 69 minutes that he played against PSG, he showed that he has learnt some lessons that would stand him in good stead to becoming a valuable squad member of the Blues as they vie to retain the title that they won last season and in the search of Champions League triumph.
One major attribute that Mourinho adores in players is relentless and unmitigated concentration to the job – whether in training, friendly matches or in actual match situations. Nothing is a joke and nothing is playful for the Portuguese tactician on the pitch. And what Moses has shown against New York Red bulls and PSG was a focus he did not have three years ago.
All the players of Moses’ ilk that have been sold or loaned out by Chelsea in the last three seasons – Kevin De Bruyne, Mohamed Salah and Andre Schurrle, had one weakness – non-compliance to tracking back to help their full backs and subsequently the team. Even Chelsea’s best player last season, Eden Hazard, was pilloried for this fact in his second season, the 2013/14 season, before he became Mourinho’s jewel. And because of this fact, the forecast is that Juan Cuadrado would have to find another team soon.
An eye for goal
When one is compliant with the two features above then one can begin to say they want to score goals. For Mourinho, it is the team first and that philosophy is hinged on the fact that his teams are always very hard to beat – even when they are playing poorly. It is all men behind the ball and then if you can add goals as a wide player, you are on the way to becoming an indispensable part of the inner squad.
So with two matches under his belt, Moses has ticked these boxes. After his substitution, Cuadrado came on but again failed to convince and he worsened his case by missing his penalty kick.
But just like Mourinho did to Hazard in the past, Moses should chin up and take criticisms manfully because they will come – if he stays at Chelsea.
But he can follow Hazard’s path with Mourinho saying this of Hazard recently. “What Eden is doing is to work and work and work to be stronger and stronger.” Moses must realise now that his work is just at its infancy and his progression will be further evaluated if he plays the right way against European champions, Barcelona on Tuesday night.
Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility
Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.
For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.
By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
TEXT AD: To advertise here . Call Willie +2347088095401...