Soccer Magazine

Weekly Commentary- What It Takes to Make a Comeback

By Jackmc13

The recurring theme of the past two weeks has been the woes currently effecting the Pacers and Chelsea Football Club. Both teams are in tight spots, one to a more drastic extent (Indiana). Let’s take a look at the four point criterion of what it takes to make a comeback and turn things around in a sports season.

It's up to Larry Legend to save the season

It’s up to Larry Legend to save the season

Hitting Rock Bottom: Chelsea haven’t exactly hit rock bottom, but they got pretty close. 1-0 losses to Crystal Palace and Aston Villa have hindered the pursuit of the Premiership, while a 3-1 loss to Paris Saint-Germain in the first leg of tomorrow night’s Champions League clash also puts them in a tight spot.

The Pacers keep finding rocks beneath the bottom, as was shown again last night when the team failed to crack 25 points in the first half against the Atlanta Hawks. The Pacers went on to lose that game 107-88, at home, against the hapless Hawks (losers of 19 of their last 28) entering yesterday’s contest.

Hitting rock bottom allows the veterans of the team to emerge and rally the troops. Chelsea’s 3-0 victory against Stoke last Saturday suggest that they have regrouped, while the Pacers don’t have much hope in sight.

Strong Leadership: Jose Mourinho is arguably the best manager in the world. He’s also loved by players and fans alike, meaning he has the ability to control his team in difficult times. Simply put, he demands nothing but the best; anything less isn’t accepted (see Juan Mata transfer saga). Expect his players to give him a performance tomorrow.

The Pacers are in a much more complicated predicament. Frank Vogel has worked wonders since becoming head coach in 2011, but he may find himself out of a job in the coming weeks. It’s not Vogel’s fault that the Pacers have been slumping, but his inability to control the different personalities means he might be headed for pasture. That wouldn’t be a bad thing, as the Pacers have team President Larry Bird waiting in the wings, a legend who would demand, and receive the respect from all Pacer players.

Talent: Both sides have mass amounts of talent. Chelsea has had hundreds of millions of pounds plugged into the club by Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich, with the money being spent on various talents imported from all over the world. Eden Hazard, John Terry, Willian, Cesar Azpilicueta, Petr Cech, Gary Cahill and Branislav Ivanovic are all world class.

While the Pacers bench has faltered over the past months, the starting lineup is as good as any in the league. Paul George, Lance Stephenson, Roy Hibbert, David West and George Hill formed the best on court PER of any first unit last season, and have been near the top during the current campaign.

Luck: When football fans think of luck, Chelsea is the first team to come to mind. The Blues certainly made their own luck along the way to their first Champions League trophy in 2012. That said, the team hasn’t looked lucky in weeks passed as stupid mistakes on defense have plagued their current Premier League campaign. Tomorrow night would be the optimal occasion for Lady Luck to return to London.

Meanwhile in Indy, the Pacers haven’t been able to catch a break. Shots aren’t falling, guys aren’t happy; everything’s gone wrong. Even luck might not be able to save these guys.

Verdict: Both teams will have a shot to turn their seasons around in the coming week. Tomorrow, Chelsea faces a massive test at Stamford Bridge against PSG. A 2-0 win would be enough to get through, and while it will be difficult, it’s certainly in the realm of possibility. The team have the quality to compete and score goals, something that was ever present Saturday against Stoke. As a Chelsea fan, I think we can nick it tomorrow at home.

As for the Pacers, things don’t look as bright. I’m of the opinion that Larry Bird should take over coaching for the rest of the season. This is his team. He was the one who decided to grab Hibbert, Stephenson, George. He was the guy who stirred the pot with the Evan Turner trade. Most importantly, he came out of retirement for this team because he believed in it. Well, the team is sucking now, and it’s up to him to come and save the season. Frank Vogel’s a great guy, but he can’t control the players.

When it’s all said and done, both teams ability to come back from the beatings they’ve taken recently depend on luck and circumstance. All we can do is fans is hope. Hopefully, the ball rolls the right way these next few weeks.

Weekly Commentary- What it takes to make a comeback

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