AVB praises resilient Blues display


Andre Villas-Boas praised the defensive resilience of his Chelsea players after today's 1-0 victory over QPR at Loftus Road, and was pleased with the way the team responded to his half-time team talk, with an improved second half performance.

The Blues cruise into the FA Cup fifth round draw thanks to a Juan Mata penalty, which proved to be the difference between the two sides in a pretty drab affair between the two west London rivals.

"I think the excellent positive today was our change from the first half to the second," the 34-year-old told the official Chelsea website.

"We looked dominant for the whole game but in the first half we looked one-paced, slow in our possession, still creating danger but maybe with less incisiveness than in the second half [where] we were better and improved as a team.

"Because of that amount of attack we created in the second half we eventually got the penalty. It was a good solid display. QPR are difficult on the counter and create problems, mainly from our mistakes, but we move on with a good 1-0 and go through."

Villas-Boas reserved praise for captain John Terry, who dealt admirably with a barrage of abuse from the home support, and with David Luiz also impressing at the back, competition for places is as exciting as ever with January signing Gary Cahill watching on from the Chelsea bench.

"It was a good solid display defensively," he added. "To be fair this January we have shown we have organised ourselves a little better in defence, not conceding so many goals, and it is repaying us. We look more organised and solid and when we scored we managed to hang on to the match.

"Individually John had an excellent performance and was very focused, he managed to get the off-field events out of his mind and concentrate fully on his job.

"There was a tendency from the players to focus only on the game. To be fair the QPR players were also outstanding on that commitment. Emotions were kept low and both teams set out to play football and it worked as a spectacle."

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