Bye November, Chelsea’s Bogey Month

The month of November has always been a dreadful month for us Chelsea fans; it’s been quite the familiar constant that as we approach the end of the years ride, November in particular takes us on an all expense ‘drop points’ ride as we propel into December. So this November, I’d like to take a look at how Chelsea did in the league and compare to the last few years of November too.

This November out of a possible 12 points from four games, Chelsea took 10 points. Victories over Queens Park Rangers, Liverpool, West Bromwich Albion (West Brom) and an end of month draw with Sunderland made it possible. Our toughest game would have thought out to be Liverpool, but except from the fact that it was the only game in the month we were behind at first to pull a comeback, the Sunderland game proved the most frustrating as we failed to score in a game for the first time this season.

Last season, we took just 4 points out of a possible 9 from three games. Jose’s return couldn’t stop the November hex, a 2-0 loss to Newcastle, a 2-2 draw vs. West Brom in which Eden Hazard had to score a last minute pen to secure a point and then a 3-0 victory against West Ham away from home gave us some relief as we headed into December last year.

In 2012 we had one of the most bizarre months as Roberto Di Matteo was sacked in the middle of November following our dismissal from the UEFA Champions League group stage and Rafa Benitez was employed as the interim coach. Out of a possible 15 points from 5 games, only 4 points were gained. A 1-1 draw against Swansea and Liverpool and then a defeat to West Brom, 2-1, saw the end of Di Matteo’s Premier League involvement for Chelsea. Benitez took charge and couldn’t turn the misfortunes of November; a ‘nil-nil’ draw against both Man.City and Fulham saw us generally battered by the month.

In 2011, we were in the Andres Villas-Boas era and out of a possible 9 points, we took 6. We had just gone through a difficult end to October as we lost back to back games to QPR and Arsenal but our game in November saw us win 1-0 over Blackburn to our relief. We lost to Liverpool at home the following league game 2-1 and then we tidied up against Wolverhampton Wanderers (Wolves), 3-0.

In 2010 we were in Carlo Ancelotti’s second spell at the club, we approached November, top of the league and seemed to be cruising to our next Premier League title as we were Champions the previous season also. November put a massive dent in our quest as out of 15 points we could only gain 4 points from the 5 games. We succumbed to a Fernando Torres brace at Anfield, losing 2-0, we got the victory against Fulham, 1-0 and then a bizarre 3-0 loss to Sunderland at Stamford Bridge and a 1-0 loss away at St. Andrews to Birmingham City saw us done. We secured a point against Newcastle as the month came to an unexplainable end; we also parted company with assistant, Ray Wilkins in the middle of the month.

The year 2009 saw the arrival of Carlo Ancelotti and it was a glorious season as we won the Premier League and FA Cup, doing the traditional double for the first time in our history. This was the last time November was a work in the park for Chelsea as the Blues claimed all 9 points from 3 games. A 1-0 feisty victory over Manchester United, a 4-0 wins over Wolves both at home and a remarkable 3-0 victory over rivals, Arsenal, saw us walk out very victorious into the next month.

It’s been a good season so far for us and November hasn’t caused us too much damage. Top of the league still and already in the knockout stages of the Champions League and we are still in every major competition. So bye November, see you next year, hopefully as defending Champions.

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