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Hello everyone, Chelsea fan here.

Let me start by apologizing to the Admins if this thread does not belong here. Please feel free to move it if that is the case Smile

I am an admin on TalkChelsea.net where we do, before every match, something called "Opposition Views". Basically, it's just an article containing some questions and answers by opposition fans just to give everyone a different perspective about the game. So, if anyone on here would like to participate in the Opposition Views for our match tomorrow night, I would very much appreciate it. Here are the questions:

1) First, how long have you been a Milan fan? And why did you choose the Rossoneri?
2) There were lots of rumors about Allegri leaving this summer, but the club finally decided to keep him. How do you rate the manager in general? And do you think the club made the right call?
3) Milan just about finished in third place last season, but you certainly finished the season on a high. What are your expectations for the upcoming season and how do you rate your title chances?
4) Like most Italian teams, the transfer market has been a bit quite this summer for Milan. Do you like the business that your club has made in the market so far? And who would you like to bring in more?
5) We’ve previously met in this competition back in 2009 (when still called the Football World Challenge) when Chelsea immerged as 2-1 winners. How important do you think the result is tomorrow? Is getting fitness levels up the only concern?
6) Chelsea’s biggest signing of the summer is arguably Jose Mourinho who you obviously know from his time at Inter. What are your thoughts on the special one?
7) How familiar are you with EPL and how do you rate Chelsea’s current squad of mostly young players? If you could have a single player from Chelsea at Milan, who would it be?
8) Milan boast an array of young talents, especially in attack but who do you think is your most important player and who should we look out for in the match?
9) It’s only preseason, so the managers are likely to still be experimenting with teams, but what do you think are the lineup and formation that Allegri will use tomorrow?
10) Finally, please the result.

Thank you in advance for your time and effort. I am of course ready to answer any questions you may have about Chelsea.
Welcome and thanks. Interesting idea, my answers follow.

1) Late 80s. For me it was several factors falling into place. One of my early football memories is Spain 82 which got transformed into love of Serie A and eventually Milan with the team that was built into the late 80s.
2) For the sake of stability it was the right choice, also remembering that the possible successors were unlikely to be inspired choices in themselves. Rating Allegri depends on one's point of view more than any other consideration, that is how you rate the 'squad at his disposal' arguments. I would struggle to give Allegri any lower or higher than B-/C+.
3) Unless glaring weaknesses are addressed 2nd place is the ceiling.
4) Austerity arguments fall a bit short for me, more can be done with the revenues available. The club does not need (early Abramovich) Chelsea type spending but equally it has not needed to cry poor as often as it has done and claimed to be.
5) Fitness and experience is most important. When I hear players not involved in summer international duty talk about tiredness - in July - I shudder.
6) A positive move! (see 7)
7) EPL is king in Canada, I have watched more Chelsea matches than Milan matches on TV (streams don't count lol). Mourinho's return will be good if luck is also on your side. With Sir Alex gone the Man United sheen will wane as well. I'll take De Bruyne but not Torres please.
8) Absences and injuries limit what you will see at this match. A sometimes struggling defense is further weakened, the attack will be the strength.
9) Can't be sure, a look at the last friendly vs Sao Paulo means not many are available for much of a variation from that game. Defense should feature Silvestre, newly arrived from Inter, though.
10) Leaky defense, lots of goals.
Welcome to MM.

1. Somewhere around 1988. Why did I choose Rossoneri? Couldn't help it, my dad is Milanista Big Grin

2. I'm neither pleased nor disappointed with the club's decision. What he achieved last year after such huge turnover in the summer was admirable, yet somehow I feel that was the best that he could give. That's not entirely his fault because when he had top players like Ibra and Thiago Silva at his disposal, he did deliver a scudetto.

3. Certainly things don't seem as bleak as they did at this juncture last year. Sure opponents like Juve and Fiorentina have strengthened their squads, but with few additions like Honda or more lately Ljajic, and with a good start, I don't see why Milan can't win the league.

4. Those two names mentioned above although personally I think an excellent CB is more needed.

5. In pre-season, getting the new ideas (if any) across the team or trying to make new players gel is more important than the result. That's why the way Milan conceded five early goals against City should be taken much more seriously than the number itself or the difference in level of fitness between the two teams.

6. An egomaniac, not exactly brilliant tactician that introduces something new, but really good at coaxing his players to give their 100% (that is until they're benched like Pepe).

7. Quite familiar since EPL was shown on TV often here. I don't know much about Chelsea young players like de Bruyne or that Traore kid but I did like what I saw from Lukaku with West Brom last season. If I have to pick one though it'll be Oscar. Hazard is slightly better but he predominantly moves from the left and we already have El Shaarawy there. Besides, at least until recently, we always have some Brasilian flavor in our team.

8. Since this is just a friendly I wouldn't look too much into it. Right now Balotelli is without a doubt our best player but I don't know if he'll be fit enough to play. He caught a fever when he returned last week and missed one or two days of training.

9. Lots of youngsters and bench players, I guess, especially at the back.

10. How about 3-0 for you guys and in return we can have Oscar on loan? Grinundwech
Thank you. Such a relief; last time an EPL fan came here, it was that annoying Tottenham brat. Welcome to MM

1) Since 1998, I remember that that season we finished something like 10th, so I became a fan not because of something we won. It is just there, maybe it sounds cliche, but it really is just there, I love Milan for no reason Blush. And one year later, we won the league Okmilan.

2) I feel he is OK. He built our current system, finish 3rd with very, very limited resources, both in budget and player quality. He has guts to promote youngsters to integral roles, something his several predecessors didn't have. He brought the best from El Shaarawy, made him from nothing into the young star we all know now, managed big egos such as Ibra, Balotelli, and Cassano, and we want to keep the stability of the team, so yeah, I'm pleased we keep him.

3) I expect us to at least finish 2nd, with our chances for scudetto I rate at 50:50 with Juventus.

4) We can do more, obviously; but I feel all transfers we already did for now was rightly done. I'd like Honda to come sooner, and for addition I'd like a quality attacking midfielder (it's more like a wish).

5) A lot has changed since 2009. I think there's more to the tomorrow game than just fitness, Chelsea is top team and we can test our quality.

6) Just briefly: I won't refuse him at Milan. He brings success wherever he goes.

7) Very familiar, EPL is very popular in my country. I think you have the best set of attacking midfielders and keepers at the EPL. The best young talent IMO is Lukaku but we are already crowded with young potential or even worldclass forwards, so if I'd like to pick one it is an attacking midfielder (the one position I think we should strengthen): Oscar, Hazard, or Mata. I don't know... I'll pick Hazard, I think he'll be one of the most successful footballer in the world at the time of his prime.

8) For now, it's still Mario Balotelli. But when on fire, Stephan El Shaarawy. He does so much more than only scoring goals.

9) Our backline is full of injury, 4 of our CBs are injured, so I tell you, you'll play against 3rd tier defense of us. Expect new signing Matias Silvestre and young, unproven Davide Pacifico at CB position. We seldom really chase victory at friendly, so maybe unfit De Jong and De Sciglio and Montolivo will be rested. My prediction:
Abbiati
Abate - Silvestre - Pacifico - Emanuelson
Nocerino - Poli - Muntari
Balotelli - Petagna - El Shaarawy

10) I'd call it 2-2. Or 3-2, I don't know who'll win.

Welcome CHOULO19 Okmilan

1) Early 90s. I was just a kid then. The reason was maybe... fate Big Grin

2) I give Allegri a 8 in 10. With Milan's financial state and the lack of passion from Berlusconi, a 8 point manager is the right choice.

3) I expect the growing of youngsters more than some trophies which are quite difficult to get with this squad. 3rd in Serie A and quaterfinal in CL are my expectation for the team.

4) I like to control my finance tightly as I getting older, so I understand and sympathize for the way my club deals with the market. However, since being a fan is a very emotionally thing, I do like some crazy moves. Of course, not Bale-crazy, that's quite stupid.

5) I don't think the result is important, as long as the goal margin is not greater than 2 Devilol I am not worry about fitness level, but the spirit of the team.

6) Well, he is special.

7) Frankly, I was more familiar with EPL than Serie A because EPL was broadcasted earlier in my country. I like Zola's Chelsea more than Abra's Chelsea (I also like Cantona's MU more than any versions). Hazard is the player I like, but I doubt his success in Serie A where there is much less space.

8) Balotelli is surely the most important. However, I'm waiting for the youngsters (who you might not know Big Grin) like Petagna or K. Boateng.

9) I don't care about Allegri's idea. I just like the lineup in second half against San Paolo with many young players.

10) 2-1 for you. I think we are better than our brother Inter Big Grin
1: Since early 90s but more devoutly since early 2000s. Fell in love with them after watching the Milan derby. Curious given my favourite colour is blue and I support Rangers, a club Chelsea are rather familiar with. So you'd think I'd have sided with Inter. But no, Milan it was.

2: I like Allegri. I think he did a sensational job last year turning this club from relegation candidates to arguably Italy's best. I don't think there was a viable alternative to choose from within our budget. No Hollywood names.

3: I'd say we are favourites. Juventus do have a stronger squad, marginally speaking, but Milan were overall at least equal from November onwards with the Bianconeri last season and we have the league's best striker from the start this time.

4: I like Andrea Poli a LOT but sadly he's our only real acquisition thus far. We're linked to many but we don't seem to finish deals off. Yes, I'd like more - especially a top class defender.

5: Results in friendlies are always about morale. Which is why the City match didn't end up quite the humiliation it threatened to. Ultimately it's about match sharpness.

6: I used to like Jose more than I do now - his needless insult recently about Kevin-Prince Boateng did not endear me to him. Jose is a charismatic man who is a master of mind games. With no SAF in the EPL Mourinho is the king of getting in the heads of others. As for his ability as manager - his spell at Madrid was the worst in his career. He could well be on a downward slide. And you'll probably know for all his domestic success he didn't do it in Europe with you guys, unlike how he did at Porto and Inter.

7: Very. I know it extremely well. I think Chelsea's issue is they lack a marquee striker. The squad isn't too bad actually, with some players I REALLY like like Hazard, Mata, Oscar, Ramires...but there's no world class striker at the end of it all. You've missed out on Cavani and Falcao. You needed one of them. And it is slight desperation from Jose to say he'll build his team around the quite terrible Torres.

8: Balo by a mile. He's our most important player, our best player, and Milan sees the best of him. He's the best striker in Italy and is becoming one of the world's best. Way to go yet though.

9: I wouldn't even second guess the atrocious team he'll probably pick for this! He's also missing many key players through injury.

10: I don't predict Wink

Nice questionaire, I know a lot of Chelsea fans so I get a lot of banter from them. One of them is so in love with Mata I swear she intends to consume him.
Thanks a lot for the replies, guys, and the kind welcomes. This feels like a very friendly place to be Smile

Here is the link for the final article if you wish to view it: http://www.talkchelsea.net/_/opposition-...views-r289

Danny, mate, I'm sorry, but I posted the article before you sent your reply, so your answers are not on there. My apologies.

Good luck tonight lads, and thanks again for your time and effort Smile
I'm borderline heartbroken. Hope we thrash the lot of you Tongue
(08-04-2013, 01:02 PM)Danny Wrote: [ -> ]I'm borderline heartbroken. Hope we thrash the lot of you Tongue

Haha. How about next time we meet, I'll make an article just for you? Wink
Sure. I'll expect it in 2017 then Wink
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