Monday, 16 October 2017

News Roundup: Thibaut Courtois is furious with Chelsea players; Tammy Abraham, The complete Striker


Thibaut Courtois took aim at his Chelsea team-mates following the side’s dismal 2-1 defeat at Crystal Palace.

Chelsea’s opponents had lost every match in the lead-up to their meeting on Saturday afternoon but managed to score their first and second goals of the season against Antonio Conte’s Premier League champions.

Watford’s victory over Arsenal leaves the Blues sitting fifth in the English top flight, nine points adrift of league leaders Manchester City, and Courtois admitted his team were a long way from their best at Selhurst Park.

‘The 11 players on the pitch were not at the right level,’ the goalkeeper told French outlet SFR Sport.

‘We were not as intense as they [Palace] were at the beginning. ‘Then we were very unlucky with the first goal – and we can barely even call it a goal.’

Conte’s men host Roma in the Champions League on Wednesday night before facing an in-form Watford at Stamford Bridge.

Tammy Abraham, The complete Striker

No doubt these are, as they say, early days in the career of Tammy Abraham but as England consider how strenuously they should try to convince the striker to reject Nigeria’s advances, Paul Clement has a simple question. “How many other 19-year-olds are playing in the Premier League and scoring goals?”

The obvious answer is Marcus Rashford and nobody is putting Abraham alongside him quite yet. But the Chelsea loanee, who actually turned 20 two weeks ago, underlined his outstanding promise with a two-goal contribution which carried Swansea out of the relegation zone.

No doubt they are watching at Stamford Bridge; perhaps even more avidly with Alvaro Morata’s recent absence. Ian Wright certainly believes Chelsea would be better off with Abraham than Michy Batshuayi. “With his movement, I’m taking Tammy over him all day long,” Wright told the BBC.

And credit to Clement, because he is humble enough to admit South Wales could be a stepping stone to West London, as well as from England Under-21s to England, assuming Abraham stays in that system and does not opt to play for the country of his father’s birth.

“Tammy’s a Chelsea player but is with us for the season and has a great opportunity to make that next step and maybe we can help him to make it and play at his parent club in the future,” Clement said. And from there, England? “Why not?” Clement replied. “He’s a young player and while there will be some inconsistency, he is learning quick. Ultimately he’s a goalscorer and he’s shown that he can score goals at this level already.”

Huddersfield were there for the taking – and David Wagner’s team palpably need to arrest a run of just three points from 18 – but they still required the taking and Abraham was there to capitalise on Jonas Lossl and apply the necessaries to Jordan Ayew’s chip.

“Tammy reminds me of Jermain in terms of the hunger to score goals,” Britton said. “Tammy just wants to get on the end of everything, he is very single-minded. Jermain has scored nearly 160 goals in the Premier League and Tammy can go on and have a great career like him.”

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