A fantastic away trip blunted by the result of the match. The San Siro should be the eighth wonder of the world - a stadium that stands out like a giant alien robotic elephant... it was so large that I could not find an appropriate landmark with which to juxtapose its size!
The city too has many beautiful attractions and having had the man flu I decided to visit as much as possible in the one day I was over there instead of getting obliterated on booze. The highlight for me was visiting the historic and ancient Duomo Cathedral. As I entered the square where nuns and tourists were roaming I could only hear Chelsea fans peacefully singing in the bar opposite this enormous building much to the chagrin of the locals - this is what makes away trips to Europe so great!
The whole experience shows how much better fans are treated on the continent than here. There must have been several dozen refreshment stands all selling booze in the vicinity of the stadium - and you were allowed to drink out of a bottle if you wanted! Not only that, but the standard of food for sale was embarrassingly good compared to the usual fayre of burgers made from the cock of a dog and the arsehole of a rat that are served up in and around Stamford Bridge. There was no trouble that I saw either although the police as usual herded experienced Chelsea fans to and from the stadium like cattle whether they wanted to go with them or not!
Partly due to injuries and perhaps also because of recent underperformance of certain players, Carlo Ancelotti turned to a 4-3-3 formation with some balance and flair in order to leave the San Siro with a positive result. Instead, Chelsea left with an undeserved loss after more shocking refereeing decisions and a distinct lack of clearcut chances on goal.
Sure, you can blind me with statistics but I do not remember many one-on-one situations and it seemed that despite playing the more attractive football Chelsea were generally restricted to chances outside the box... apart from when the generally excellent Kalou was tripped up when through on goal. Referee! If it is not a penalty then book Salomon for diving!
Inter are a poor side - slow and sloppy - but Mourinho was familiar with his choice of tactics: allow Chelsea the ball but in the very final fifth of the park defend, defend, defend. His side had three chances throughout the game but they were all by far the most dangerous moments of the match.
It is tough to be too critical when you outplay the opposition and come away with nothing... the home crowd was silenced on many occasions because of Chelsea's play and you felt the home fans were easily pleased as they applauded any spell their side had in possession. Many Chelsea players were outstanding - Malouda as makeshift left back, Ivanovic as an attacking right back and Mikel as the typical European defensive midfielder... in fact, the weakest players in the team were the English contingent who were not at the races at all and as for Ballack - Chelsea matches are not there for you to increase the amount of miles you have run all season without particularly producing much!
Overall you can't help but feel that if Mourinho was in charge of this Chelsea side then we would have come away with a boring, but useful 1-0 win that would have set us up comfortably for the next leg at the Bridge. As usual, he managed to wind up Carlo Ancelotti enough before the game but was good enough to admit they were fortunate with the win. I cannot wait for Jose to come back to the Bridge for the return leg and if we are defeated then I hope they win the whole competition - something that I doubt will happen because of our reckless leadership and because Inter are simply not that good a side!