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LEO'S LONDON: Mourinho is having a laugh over his latest Chelsea claims

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17 Feb 2010 14:56:04

LEO'S LONDON: Mourinho is having a laugh over his latest Chelsea claims

Jose Mourinho claims Chelsea have suffered since he left them and there is no doubting his departure in 2007 marked the end of an era at Stamford Bridge. But if he genuinely believes they would have been more successful sticking with him as manager, he is kidding himself. Where did it all go wrong? Mourinho watching Chelsea shortly before he left the club in 2007 Even though Chelsea tore themselves apart after Mourinho left, the potential for damage was far greater had he stayed. The sad fact is that the Special One and Roman Abramovich simply could not make it work after their huge falling out the season before - their working relationship was unworkable. There were problems with other key figures too and it would have taken some serious backing down among the higher echelons to make it work. No, I can't imagine it either. Chelsea - and the Premier League - certainly miss  Mourinho and he really is a great manager, in the right environment. Prolonging his pyrotechnics at Stamford Bridge would have been fun to watch too, but the club had too many people standing too  close for comfort.  QPR's perfect boss: No 286 Lothar Matthaus is apparently one of the managers being considered to take over at QPR in the summer. An outspoken German boss with an unimpressive record who has never been involved with English football. Sounds perfect if Rangers want their revolving managerial door to continue to turn. Phil Parkinson said he saw some pretty average football from his Charlton team in  defeat at Bristol Rovers this week. But as they have now gone five games without a win, it is the manager who has the most to prove. Parkinson has largely been associated with failure  at Charlton until this season and it is when teams have a dip in form that their bosses earn their money. He really needs to rally his troops and prevent Charlton being overhauled by rivals Millwall if he is ever to rescue his once bright reputation.  Reverse psychology seems to be all the rage at West Ham these days under David  Sullivan and David Gold. First they claim to have fired criticism at their manager in order to get a response on the pitch from the players, suggesting Gianfranco Zola was too nice. Now they are asking investors to put up to  £10million each into a club they insist they were mad to buy because of the disastrous state of the club's finances. New owners: David Gold and David Sullivan For good measure, Sullivan says it will be 'Armageddon' if West Ham are relegated, something they are far from safe from. I'm not sure that would convince me to invest my money in the club but given that the team won 2-0 after the chairman's recent  comments, more rich 'nutters' are probably queuing to join the two Davids at Upton Park already.  Chelsea fans will find out the naked truth about their left-back soon enough. Yuri Zhirkov looks like he will get an extended run in the team after Ashley Cole's latest injury and must put everything he has got on display, in a football sense. Standing in for the England defender will be a tough job but an impressive attempt is required from the Russian to justify his move to Chelsea. Zhirkov: Battling with Everton's Landon Donovan at Goodison Park last week Zhirkov cost £18million from CSKA Moscow last summer at a time when the Stamford Bridge club were just starting to try to  reduce their transfer spending. Daniel Sturridge, who cost an initial £3.5m, and free agent Ross Turnbull were  the only other additions to the Chelsea  squad. Zhirkov is a left-sided player who prefers midfield but can also play at the back. In his position in midfield, Chelsea have Florent  Malouda, Joe Cole, Salomon  Kalou, Frank Lampard and Michael Ballack have  featured there in various formations, so he must have been bought as cover for Ashley Cole. Now Zhirkov has more than 30 caps for his country and  is clearly a gifted player, but the time has come for him to really prove it.   More from Leo Spall... LEO'S LONDON: Arsenal face heartfelt blow if Spurs pip them to third10/02/10 LEO'S LONDON: Battle of Stamford Bridge could prove Arsenal's last stand03/02/10 LEO'S LONDON: Tottenham misfit Pavlyuchenko points the way to what is wrong with football27/01/10 LEO'S LONDON: Four years on, Theo Walcott must now prove he's World Cup class20/01/10 LEO'S LONDON: Simon Jordan may have ruffled a few feathers, but the game will be duller without him13/01/10 LEO'S LONDON: Florent Malouda will get nowhere with his Frank talking - Lampard is Mr Chelsea06/01/10 LEO'S LONDON: Super Cesc proved he is Arsenal through and through30/12/09 LEO'S LONDON: Harry's handling of Christmas bash has been spot on22/12/09 VIEW FULL ARCHIVE


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