What The Papers Say - 16 October
Round-up of the post-Chelsea paper talk.
The views on this page are taken from the local and national media and do not necessarily reflect the views of Everton.
Everton boss David Moyes is looking at Belgium striker Marvin Ogunjimi.
Moyes watched the Genk hitman in action for his country against Germany last week and is keen on the 24-year-old as he puts together a shortlist of potential attacking targets.
Supremo Bill Kenwright has given Moyes a pledge that there will be cash for a forward - with insiders revealing Moyes had the funds at the end of the last deadline.
Ogunjimi, who has scored five times in seven games for Belgium, would cost around £3million from Racing Genk who could be forced to sell.
The powerful front-runner was close to signing for Spanish side Real Mallorca before the last transfer deadline but the deal collapsed because paperwork was not completed on time.
Ogunjimi had set his heart on a move to La Liga but has also admitted he would be interested in playing in the Premier League.
Moyes has also been keeping tabs on Switzerland pair Eren Derdiyok and Fabian Frei. Derdiyok is a rising star at Bayer Leverkusen but the 23-year-old would be expensive.
Frei, 22, scored for Basel against Manchester United in the Champions League last month but is more of a wide man than centre forward.
Moyes is also watching ¬developments with Ghanaian Asamoah Gyan in the Middle East.
The Sunderland striker was a target before he took his ¬lucrative loan move to Al-Ain.
As revealed by People Sport last month, Gyan would face a massive tax bill if he returns to British shores within a year.
But Moyes is keeping tabs in case he wants to come back to the Premier League.
CHELSEA won't be at Stamford Bridge for many more years if Roman Abramovich gets his way - perhaps that's why Juan Mata seems in such a rush to leave his mark on this ¬famous old ground.
The 23-year-old was mesmerising yesterday and left Everton chasing shadows in the evening kick-off as his explosive start to life in the Premier League continued apace.
Mata capped a special display by playing a major role in the Blues' first and third goals and helped his side close the gap to just a point on ¬Manchester United.
Daniel Sturridge, John Terry and Ramires were on target, while Apostolos Vellios struck a late reply for Everton less than a ¬minute after ¬coming on.
But it was Mata whose name was on every Chelsea fans' lips as they drifted home.
He ¬certainly gave them a lift after many were upset by the proposals to move away from Stamford Bridge, which surfaced during the ¬recent international break.
No doubt owner Abramovich will have seen the banner around the stadium prior to kick-off which ¬declared ‘This Is Our Home' and the other held aloft which simply read ‘CPO say NO' as he made his way to his seat.
It didn't make for quite as ¬comfortable viewing as the Chelsea hierarchy will have had while ¬watching Manchester United's draw at Liverpool earlier in the day, ¬although Blues boss Andre Villas-Boas was keen to stress he does not consider a 1-1 scoreline at Anfield as points dropped.
The Portuguese, who celebrates his 34th birthday tomorrow, said: "I think a point at Anfield is something any manager takes when you are in title contention, and I'm sure Alex Ferguson feels the same.
"So it was an important point for Manchester United. It gives us a possibility to be closer to them, but of course we still have to go to Anfield."
That's not something Chelsea should fear in this sort of form.
Everton boss David Moyes, whose side had only lost one of their last nine games against the Blues, said he felt Chelsea have caused them more problems in the past but, even if that is the case, the scoreline and the performance was emphatic.
The visitors defended solidly for half an hour but Chelsea, inspired by their Spanish magician, finally worked their way through.
Mata clipped a ¬perfectly weighted pass into the path of overlapping left-back Ashley Cole, whose cross was forced home by Sturridge.
Chelsea added a ¬second in first-half stoppage-time from a Frank Lampard free-kick. Terry ¬applied the header to the cross to beat Tim Howard.
Leon Osman threatened with a curling effort after the break which would have put a ¬different slant on the second half, but the ball went agonisingly wide and Chelsea soon settled back into their rhythm.
Again Drogba and Mata ¬combined and, when the Spaniard sent over a low cross, Ramires raced on to the end of it to put the game beyond Everton.
Ramires went over on a knee as he scored the goal, but Chelsea hope he will be fit for QPR next week at the latest, maybe even Genk in the Champions League in midweek.
Vellios pulled one back for Everton but it was never going to affect the outcome of the game.
Villas-Boas said: "It was a good win for us. It was important after the international break to get three points on the board immediately.
"We were patient in our build-up and it was decisive to get our second goal just before half-time."
The Portuguese rarely comments on individuals, but Sturridge was happy to heap praise on Mata even if his manager was not.
He said: "Mata gives something every game and he runs so hard all the time.
"He creates a lot of chances and is a great acquisition."
Moyes endorsed Sturridge's opinion of Mata, though he felt his side's ¬defending also contributed to their downfall.
He said: "The second goal was the killer. I actually thought we didn't play too badly, but there were a ¬couple of lapses defensively.
"Mata has given Chelsea a different dimension, they're more flexible than they have been in the past."
André Villas-Boas does not come across as a man who would welcome any undue fuss for a birthday.
He turns 34 on Monday, and has no special plans.
"Work. Maybe dinner with my wife," he said a little reluctantly after watching a routine victory for his new team. But his present may well come in the week ahead. Chelsea meet the Belgian champions, Genk, on Wednesday, and then on a derby weekend are looking to close ground on at least one of the Manchester clubs as United and City lock horns while they drop in at Loftus Road.
They may not be in full swing yet but Chelsea are in a very handy position. It must be comforting for Villas-Boas to be able to mould his team - this selection did the business without the suspended Fernando Torres and the rested David Luiz and allowed for another cameo from Oriol Romeu - while maintaining a 100% success rate at home. Three goals poached from inside the six-yard box, three points, thank you and goodnight.
"Fine-tuning" is how Villas-Boas defines Chelsea's current situation. "The amount of games we have will help the team to play better. We have not done anything special. We have to keep going to find a position of comfort at the top of the table. That's where we want to be."
For Everton, a third consecutive defeat was demoralising, all the more so as they were not without hope that they could eke out a result here, having journeyed south with an excellent record at Stamford Bridge. They duly began without inhibitions. Petr Cech made a fumbling save, and Mikel John Obi made an exemplary defensive intervention to prevent Marouane Fellaini from having a free shot.
Early on Chelsea struggled to get a foothold. Didier Drogba led the line without the power of his prime, potshots came from distance, but from unusual suspects such as José Bosingwa and Ashley Cole. No danger.
No panic, either. All of a sudden, two slick passes changed everything. Juan Mata switched possession to Cole, whose cross hung beautifully to allow Daniel Sturridge to nod Chelsea ahead from close range.
His fourth goal of the season was greeted appreciatively in the Shed, who chanted "Sturridge for England".
In first-half stoppage time Frank Lampard was the architect of Chelsea's second, with a perfectly flighted free-kick into the heart of the penalty area. John Terry bulldozed in front of Tim Howard to direct his header into the net.
"A killer," rued Moyes, who was disappointed that poor defending helped Chelsea on their way. That was the opposite to the foundation of all Everton's positive results here in recent seasons. "I don't know what the difference was," he mused. "Maybe that 400 million difference turned up after 20 minutes, eh?"
One of the players who was recruited at the kind of fee beyond Everton's means was the lively and intelligent Mata, who gave Chelsea a new dimension. Just after the hour mark the Spaniard steered in a cross from the left, and Ramires timed his run for another close-range finish. Unfortunately for the in-form Brazilian, he took a knock on the knee in the process of scoring, and hobbled off, although Villas-Boas dismissed any worries afterwards.
Everton still found it in them to respond, when the substitute Apostolos Vellios slid in a footnote with his first touch seconds after coming on. But there would be no more drama.
With a home record as powerful as Chelsea's in recent years, as well as all the heartstrings that are attached to the place, it is little wonder the most traditional of fans are resistant to the idea of moving from Stamford Bridge. Following the club's noises about tying up loose ends in terms of housekeeping, fans outside the ground were leafleted. "If we lose this battle, the club can relocate ANYWHERE without any consultation with supporters," wrote the Say No CPO group, which is campaigning against the sale of the Stamford Bridge pitch from a fans' body to the club.
Inside, a little banner swirled over the heads of the crowd beneath Roman Abramovich's box: "This is our home." It was not exactly mutiny, but it was something, even if it must have made Everton's supporters wonder.
Decrying ambitions to upgrade facilities paid for by their billionaire benefactor? They could only wish to have that complaint.
DANIEL STURRIDGE for England? That was the cry at Stamford Bridge.
And in a week where Fabio Capello learned that Wayne Rooney will miss the first three games of Euro 2012, Sturridge staked his claim to fill in.
His opening goal was his fourth in as many games this season - as many as Fernando Torres, Didier Drogba and Nicolas Anelka ... combined!
The Chelsea striker has yet to play for Capello's side but impressed with the Under-21s and deserves a chance to prove his worth.
He used his head to set the ball rolling and John Terry did likewise, before Ramires piled on the agony for Everton, who only scored late on through Apostolos Vellios.
So it was a case of many happy returns for Andre Villas-Boas, who did what Carlo Ancelotti, Guus Hiddink and Luis Felipe Scolari couldn't against the Toffees.
Avram Grant was the last Chelsea manager to engineer a Premier League win against David Moyes and Co. way back in April 2008.
So victory here was a nice early birthday present for Villas-Boas, who turns 34 tomorrow.
Recent history suggested Everton had become something of a bogey side for Chelsea.
The Toffees travelled to west London having not lost in their last six league games against them.
But the home side had started the season with a 100 per cent record in their own back yard, so something had to give.
Jack Rodwell's ludicrous red card in the Merseyside derby was quickly overturned so he stayed in an unchanged line-up.
And Everton made a bright start, giving Chelsea no time to settle.
Petr Cech was forced into an early save from Louis Saha. It then took a superb saving tackle from John Obi Mikel to deny Marouane Fellaini a point-blank effort after good work from Leighton Baines.
But Chelsea went ahead against the run of play in the 31st minute from a well-worked move.
And it was 2-0 before half time when Coleman tripped Cole to concede a needless free kick which Frank Lampard swung into the box.
This time it was Terry who rose to head it home. Howard did not cover himself in glory, flapping at the cross but neither did Fellaini, whose attempted challenge was feeble.
Terry became only the fifth player to make 350 league appearances for Chelsea, and he slid along the turf in celebration.
What Everton lack in quality they more than make up for in spirit and Leon Osman hit the outside of the post seconds after the restart.
But it was all over when Ramires turned in No.3 from close range after Rodwell went to sleep, allowing Juan Mata to pick out the Brazilian.
That rendered substitute Vellios' late strike - sliding on to a cross from fellow sub Royston Drenthe - little more than a consolation for the visitors.
You had to feel sorry for cash-strapped Everton, who lost their third game in a row against the Premier League's big spenders.
It was the first time they had lost three on the spin since November 2009 - and they will hope for better when they meet Chelsea again in the Carling Cup.
EVERTON boss David Moyes isn't in a position at the moment to compete at the highest level in the transfer market.
But he is delighted about his latest signing for an initial fee of £170,000 - midfielder George Green who is only 15.
Everton have agreed a deal with Bradford City which could eventually rise to £1.6million.
And Moyes would be delighted to pay it because it would mean Green had fulfilled his exciting potential.
Such was his reputation that he was also wanted by Tottenham, Arsenal, Glasgow Rangers and even Bayern Munich.
But Green will now become a full-time member of Everton's academy next summer when he is 16.
He is the latest product of Bradford's successful youth system which recently has produced Manchester United's Tom Cleverley, Aston Villa's Fabian Delph and Andre Wisdom at Liverpool.
Juan Mata breezed into Stamford Bridge at the same time as Chelsea's pursuit of Luka Modric was finally stymied by Spurs, but it looks like Andre Villas-Boas has finally found the creative force the club's supporters have been crying out for.
Mata hit the ground running with a goal in his first game, a cameo appearance against Norwich, but the skilful Spaniard is now dictating events to such
an extent that Chelsea were able to end Everton's five-year unbeaten run in the League at Stamford Bridge. Mata set up two goals and brought to mind Tommy Smith's description of Ossie Ardiles in his prime: "It was like trying to tackle dust."
Mata was here, there and everywhere, coming inside from wide and setting up chances for his team-mates, as Everton manager David Moyes was quick to recognise.
"Mata has improved Chelsea the way David Silva has at Manchester City. He has given them a different dimension."
Villas-Boas does not like to single out individuals, preferring to emphasise the team ethic, and the Chelsea manager said: "The talent in the squad is so immense, and our job is to allow them to express themselves."
Daniel Sturridge was less coy: "Juan gives something every game and he runs so hard all the time. He creates a lot of chances."
It was Mata's finely judged forward pass that allowed Ashley Cole to cross from the left for Sturridge to head Chelsea ahead with his fourth goal of the season.
It was harsh on Everton, but Chelsea doubled their advantage in first-half stoppage time when Frank Lampard swung in a free-kick from the left and John Terry climbed highest to head home a goal to celebrate his 350th league appearance for the club.
That effectively put the game beyond Everton's reach, but the visitors kept fighting. Leon Osman twice went close early in the second half before Mata intervened again to finish the game as a contest.
The former Valencia midfielder found Didier Drogba in a central position and took a return pass wide on the left. His low cross was enough to evade goalkeeper Tim Howard and allow the onrushing Ramires to beat Leighton Baines and Sylvain Distin to the ball and drive it into the net from close range.
The Brazilian's elation was cut short as he soon limped off, having injured his knee as he scored, but the fact that his replacement was Florent Malouda demonstrated the sort of talent Villas-Boas has in reserve.
"We started well but fell away - perhaps it was a squad worth £400 million," said Moyes with a rueful smile.
Everton did at least get one goal back, when substitute Apostolos Vellios scored with his first touch of the ball after replacing Louis Saha in the 81st minute, diverting Royston Drenthe's low cross past Petr Cech from close range.
But it was too little too late to save Everton's proud league record at Stamford Bridge, and the result ensured Chelsea kept in touch with the Manchester clubs ahead of them. They are now one behind United, who meet leaders City next weekend.
Before that, there are Champions League fixtures, with Chelsea at home to Belgian side Genk on Wednesday. Villas-Boas, who turns 34 tomorrow and has just celebrated two years in management, welcomes the chance for his new-look team to get more used to each other.
"There is some fine-tuning to be done, but we always said the fluency and the number of games we have coming up will help the team because they will play together more and more in match situations rather than training."