Forgot Password

 

Register

 

Create your Connect ID

This will allow you to login to all DStv websites & applications




or
Login using
x

Email Reset

 




Loading...
Loading Live Scoring...
*All times CAT (GMT+2)

Football | Barclays Premier League

Chelsea need fear factor - Azpilicueta



Chelsea defender Cesar Azpilicueta admits his team must embark a long winning streak if they are to restore the fear factor opponents used to experience when facing the Blues.

Azpilicueta and his teammates travel to face Newcastle on Saturday after a frustrating 2-2 draw at struggling Reading in midweek when they conceded two late goals after appearing to be on course for victory.

That disappointment came on the back of the FA Cup fourth round draw with third tier minnows Brentford and the League Cup semifinal exit at the hands of Swansea.

Chelsea interim manager Rafael Benitez insists his side, currently third in the Premier League but only five points clear of fifth placed Everton, have been playing well without getting the rewards they deserve.

But Azpilicueta acknowledges that the longer the current run continues, the harder it will be for the Blues to intimidate opponents.

"Teams get scared when you win games in a row. Against Reading we played well and had a lot of chances. We felt that they were worried about our game but it's true that when you win you get more respect," Azpilicueta said.

Azpilicueta also conceded the recent poor run of results has had an effect on the team's confidence and warned they must shake off the effects of the Reading game quickly ahead of the St James' Park clash.

"We have a lot of players with experience. They've played a lot of important games. We've had this situation a lot of times," he said.

"It's also a little bit of confidence. When the team is better it's easier to have the mind clear and to manage those situations. Now we have to recover well because we have an important game before the international break."

Chelsea will head to the north east after a double boost with Eden Hazard learning the three-match ban imposed for kicking a ball-boy at Swansea will not be extended and Juan Mata recovering from the ankle injury that forced him off against Reading.

Meanwhile, Newcastle staged a special French day at their training ground this week in a bid to help their growing Gallic contingent settle in.

Five of Newcastle's January transfer window signings came from France, bringing to 10 the number of players from across the English Channel available to manager Alan Pardew.

Owner Mike Ashley popped in to sample the French cuisine on offer in the tricolor-clad canteen, although the new arrivals didn't have it all their own way, succumbing to a heavy defeat in a France versus 'rest of the world' training match.

Newcastle eased their relegation fears with a first away win for eight months at Aston Villa in midweek, and now they will look to end a six-and-a-half-year wait for a home victory over Chelsea.

Pardew revealed: "France versus rest of the world was interesting, but the French lads got a bit of 'Les Miserables'. They got murdered.

"To be fair, they looked a little bit tired from the other night, so they'll want a bit of revenge.

"The French day worked really well, but it's just the chef showing off really. We've had scallops and everything so if we have dodgy bellies he's going to get it.

"It's important to understand the culture when you have such a big percentage of your squad from one nation.

"It was nice to have Mike around. He just wanted to see the new players and this was the first opportunity he had.

"I don't think he speaks French, but he said hello. He's a personable guy and it's always good to have him here."

Shop

Gerrard: My Autobiography
Steven Gerrard is a hero to millions, not only as the inspirational captain of Liverpool FC, but as a key member of the England team.
R152.00
Rafa: My Story
Revelatory memoir from the greatest sportsman in the world today.
R182.00
FIFA 14
Xbox 360
R549.00
Mitre Ultimatch Soccer Ball - White
A high quality football, offering high performance at both training and during football matches.
R252.00


Comments

More expert analysis and opinion from Sport24
The opinions expressed by Sport24 experts and bloggers are theirs alone, and do not necessarily represent those of SuperSport

Sports Talk



Carol Radull
Was Arsenal playing football?
What on earth was that? What was that game Arsenal were playing in Germany on Tuesday night?

Calvin Emeka Onwuka
The pressure is on at Man United
By the time the summer transfer window closed in Europe, Manchester United had spent heavily. Times...

Arjun Vidyarthi
Reds back in Europe with a win
The Champions League is all about high octane action and last minute goals and that’s exactly what...

John Dykes
Copa BPL is the way to go
Monday night’s game at the KC Stadium provided another reminder that 2014/2015 could well turn out...

Gary Al-Smith
What Appiah's axing says about Africans
Ghana boss Kwesi Appiah knew he would be sacked. He did not expect it to be so messy though.

Claudia Ekai
How the mighty fell
African football history tells many stories of the rise and fall of stars that once had the world...