Oppos Viewpoint – Chelsea

A bit about you:

Name: David Chidgey

Current home town: Winchester

Birthplace: Winchester

How long have you supported your team? 40+ years

Overview of your club:

Favourite thing about your home ground: The East Stand (the only bit remaining from when I first went!)

Favourite match played by your team & why: Champions’ League Final, Munich 2012 – underdogs, backs to the wall performance; fairy tale ending for Drogba, never thought I’d see the day where Chelsea were crowned European Champions. Tears were shed!

Favourite player of all time who played for your club: Frank Lampard. The consummate professional. Not the most gifted, but worked so hard at his game; his record number of goals underline his intelligence and understated brilliance. His quiet, determined leadership was a major factor in Chelsea’s most successful period ever.

About our forthcoming match against you:

Your favourite current player in your squad and why? How can you not love N’Golo Kante. Probably the only genuinely world class player in the team. He’s had a rough time recently with injuries and all the nonsense about his best position. He’s good enough to play anywhere in the team; perhaps not in goal as he’s vertically challenged. Apart from his talent on the pitch he’s such a humble and genuine chap off it.

Player in your squad we should most fear and why? Tammy Abraham. Presuming he’s now fit; he has raw talent and capable of surprising teams with his strength and ability and knack for scoring goals.

Player in our squad you most fear and why? Jamie Vardy. Great striker. Would love to have seen him play for Chelsea. A really irritating player too which I like. He’s had a resurgence under Rodgers who has had the sense to play to his strengths.

Up and coming prospect in your squad? Billy Gilmour. Very young but so much talent and maturity. His first two matches against Liverpool and Everton he was man of the match. Incredible. The best prospect I’ve seen at the club for decades.

Where do you think you’ll finish this season? Fourth

How do you think you’ll do against us? Win, of course 😊

General Questions:

Who do you think will qualify for Europe ? Top 4 – Liverpool; City; Leicester; Chelsea. Man Utd; Spurs; Wolves to get Europa League

What are your thoughts on both the introduction of VAR and how it has been applied so far this season? Appalling on both counts. It’s a disaster and ruining the game for match going supporters. Robotic administrators taking the passion and humanity out of football. Put it in the bin!

Recent Events:

How do you feel your club has handled the current situation ? The infractions by Mason Mount and Callum Hudson-Odoi apart; very well. They’ve led the way in their generosity with donations and facilities for the NHS and those in need. The work the club does with its Foundation and the money they donate is streets ahead of other clubs. Very proud of them for doing so.

What do you think about games behind closed doors ? A necessary evil. Clearly needs must, but it is the antithesis of football for match going fans. I hope but fear that it may prove to be the thin end of the wedge, if the PL and TV companies deem it successful.

How would you like to importance of fans represented for the rest of this season? Well give we are not allowed to be there, there’s not much they can do tangibly to make up for that. Paying us back ticket money obviously; keeping the flags and banners there is important too. Chelsea are displaying season ticket holder’s names on the LED ad boards which is not a bad idea but all the other ideas such as piped in atmosphere; cardboard cut outs of fans; Zoom boards and the like just seem like poor gimmicks and a very poor substitute for the real thing.

Looking forwards to the 20/21 season, has your Trust formed a view on the potential of having some fans attend games in socially distanced crowds ? We’ve not discussed yet as a group; but personally, I’d be against it. Who gets to decide who is allowed in? All in or none at all would be my view.

Has your Trust have you been doing anything different since lockdown ? We’ve worked hard to keep in touch with members, given the circumstances. We’ve continued meetings virtually and we’ve been in constant dialogue with the club to put forward the views of the supporters. So, much the same as always to be honest!

Any other comments?

Good luck on Sunday and may the best team win, with no manipulation of the game from VAR!

David Chidgey is a Board Member of the Chelsea Supporters Trust who handles Media & Communications. Read the latest from their Trust here http://chelseasupporterstrust.com/