Chelsea on Brink of Meltdown at Vesuvius


The City of Naples is famous for much, but chiefly in world history for the eruption of Mount Vesuvius which wiped two entire cities off the map.  In AD 79, the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum were buried by the eruption of the only volcano to have exploded in Europe in the last 100 years.

The modern city of Naples lies about six miles west of the volcano and Chelsea are on the brink of the modern football equivalent; a heavily funded club finishing a season without either honour or honours.

The Blues are out of the league but a permanent feature in the tabloids thanks to their controversial captain John Terry and allegations of racism leveled against him.

So far his biggest contribution to the 2011/12 season has to be to cost one manager his job.

If Naples eliminate Chelsea in the Champions League, that one may become two.

Previews by Madi Williamson

Tuesday, February 21, 2012:

CSKA Moscow vs Real Madrid – The Russians will face the Spanish giants at home in the first of their two fixtures. Jose Mourinho’s side will face a disciplined Russian defense and will want to get as many away goals as possible to avoid a tough return leg at the Santiago Bernabeu. This should be no problem since they finished the group stage with nineteen goals for them and only two against.

Napoli vs Chelsea – Napoli barely squeaked by Manchester City in the group stage and now face English giants Chelsea FC. Napoli held Man City to a draw in the first match the two teams played out in the group stage and defeated them in the second, so Chelsea will need to be wary of the Italian side. Chelsea themselves are facing a bit of a crisis and could use some European success as Portuguese manager AVB is in hot water.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012:

Marseille vs Inter Milan – The French side made it through a tough group facing the likes of Arsenal and the strong Greek side Olympiacos while Inter finished top of their group but are currently struggling domestically. Milan will rely on top goalscorer Diego Milito to get them some valuable away goals while Marseille will hope for goals from Loic Remy and young Ghanaian striker Andre Ayew.

FC Basel vs Bayern Munich – FC Basel will host a tough Bayern Munich and play them for the second season in a row. The two sides met in group play last season with Bayern proving to be the better team and advancing at the expense of the Swiss side. Basel will hope for strong performances from their young midfielders and playmakers Granit Xhaka (19) and Xherdan Shaqiri (20) who will be transferring to the German side this summer. Bayern’s Champions League experience will put them at an advantage as they face the knockout-stage newcomers.


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