Matt Stanger finds it impossible to believe that Roman Abramovich is content with the haphazard nature of Chelsea's European title victories in the last 12 months...
Rafa Benitez has left Chelsea in excellent shape ahead Jose Mourinho's imminent return after guiding the club to Europa League glory and into next season's Champions League...
In between Jamie Redknapp telling us why his 34-year-old cousin deserves an extension to a contract reportedly worth £150,000 a week, we heard from the man himself. How much effort did that victory take, Frank? "Huge," was the answer. He was honest enough to admit that luck had played a considerable part but he looked exactly like a man who knew what Chelsea had just achieved.
Everton had not been beaten at Goodison Park since March. They had only been beaten six times in the Premier League in the whole of 2012. They had already beaten Manchester United and Tottenham at home this season. They had won this fixture against Chelsea three times in succession against two different managers. It was imperative that Chelsea got a good start.
Everton scored after 63 seconds.
Chelsea were sloppy, ill-disciplined and seemingly thrown by David Moyes' intelligent tactics of testing César Azpilicueta with the physicality of Victor Anichebe while trusting Steven Pienaar with the twin tasks of a) supporting Nikica Jelavic and b) getting close enough to David Luiz to stop Chelsea at the source. It worked. After 20 minutes, Fernando Torres had touched the ball three times and Everton had hit the woodwork as often as the Spaniard had been caught offside (twice).
At that juncture they would have probably offered to hand over Torres in exchange for a point. And they would have probably been turned down.
But this Chelsea side has resilience. They have now won seven of their last eight games because they have flair allied with that resilience. Against Everton, their pass completion rate was 10% down on their average - with Torres and Lampard the worst culprits with a rotten 61% - but they kept plugging away while gradually dulling the influence of Pienaar. Rafa Benitez has now taken 19 points from his last seven Premier League games against Everton and there are unlikely to be many (if any) other managers who can come close to that record.
Everything he has done at Chelsea has been simple - playing the club's best available centre-backs at centre-back, playing a natural right-back at right-back, moving David Luiz into the middle of the park (his lofted ball for one of Torres' many scuffed chances was sublime), sensibly managing Frank Lampard's return, not playing all three of the wannabe No. 10s at once - but they are simple things that were apparently beyond Roberto Di Matteo. Benitez is steadily doing an excellent job.
Of course, Monday's newspapers will be dominated by talk of two-goal Lampard as journalists advocate a massive wage for a very useful but ultimately bit-part player, or talk of Demba Ba (a no-brainer, as I wrote here) potentially joining from Newcastle, so we may be one of the few to give some credit to Benitez for doing what 13 other managers have failed to do since Arsene Wenger in March. That was a proper football match and it was won by a proper football manager.