‘Campaign’ against Chelsea stops when they stop flouting the rules

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If the Premier League was decided on moaning and complaining about the authorities, it’s pretty safe to say Ladbrokes would be paying out on Chelsea already, and now Jose Mourinho is looking for another victory in that particular league table.

This time though, ‘The Special One’ is showing his petulant side without opening his mouth, refusing to attend his usual pre-match press conference ahead of the crunch tie this weekend against Manchester City.

The whole saga is drawn from the Blues’ Capital One Cup semi final on Wednesday, when striker Diego Costa was seen to stamp on not one, but two Liverpool players.

The Portuguese manager was adamant that the contact was accidental, and is seemingly even more enraged that his star forward has been charged by the FA.

You can judge for yourself, but at least one of these incidents has the whiff of intent about them, and it’s understandable that the powers that be took action.

This latest incident is obviously the latest in a long line of unjust scourges on the Chelsea name in Mourinho’s mind, with Sky pundit Jamie Redknapp taking the brunt this time;

“Maybe you are already influenced by the campaign on the television with the certain pundits saying that Costa has crimes – they must be nuts the guy who says that.

“It is a great campaign; we know how much that pundit loves Chelsea and particularly loves me.

“They are always right, they never lose, they always win and they have to be fair and they have to be honest” – sarcasm seemingly his next route of attack.

But while he may feel that referees have it in for his side, the former Porto boss needs to drill it into his players that they have no need to flout the rules.

It all seemed to start off with the diving incidents against Hull back in December.

Both Diego Costa and Willian hit the deck after no contact from opposition players and were correctly booked.

This was before Gary Cahill took flight in the penalty area looking to win a spot-kick with no defender touching with him.

No action was taken, with the Blues man lucky to get away with it.

Then came the big reveal of the ‘campaign’, and a subsequent £25,000 fine for Mourinho.

During Chelsea’s tie at Southampton, Cesc Fabregas was tripped in the box. But rather than award the penalty, referee Anthony Taylor cautioned the player for diving.

In this case the league leaders look to have been hard done by, and Mourinho and co were right to feel aggrieved, but the point remains.

The manager cannot continue to have double standards when it comes to referees.

His side possess enough quality to trouble all Premier League sides, and at their best are a joy to watch.

But Mourinho’s complaining and incidents such as Costa’s stamps mean it is not the media who are fuelling the dislike for the club amongst non-Chelsea fans, but the actions of the Stamford Bridge outfit themselves.

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Ben Stones

Ladbrokes News’ equine expert, Ben likes nothing more than studying the form to pick out a winner or two for our readers. A Journalism and Media Studies graduate from the University of Winchester, Ben has previously written for a number of football and racing blogs and websites, as well as contributing to the sports pages of his home-town newspaper.