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All season long certain pundits have been in collusion to ensure the on-going punishment of Blues players for crimes they have not committed.
Jose Mourinho has regularly intimated that their ultimate objective appears to be nothing less than halting the club in its attempts to win a third league Premier League title under his tutelage.
The group, whose identities are well-known, made small gains at first, with an occasional dubious yellow card for simulation or wrongly-denied penalty.
However, such has been the Blues’ continued progress under Mourinho – we are seven points clear in the league – that our persecutors’ efforts to undermine the club have become increasingly brazen.
First of all there was the Sky Sports-led vilification of Diego Costa’s attempts to avoid inflicting injury upon his Liverpool opponents by leaping clear of them.
Now, having seen Chelsea take seven points from a possible nine without him, they have conspired to rob the club of the ever-gallant Branislav Ivanovic.
The selfless Serbian is just 1/2 to receive a retrospective ban of more than 3.5 games after his peace-making role in a scuffle against Everton was wilfully misinterpreted as violent conduct by the punditocracy.
Having rightfully escaped censure for putting a fatherly arm around Toffees’ midfielder James McCarthy at the time, it has since been claimed his intentions were sinister.
Yet the FA, apparently prompted by the anti-Chelsea media, are already looking into the ‘melee’, with it widely expected that gentle Branislav will be retrospectively punished.
The governing body were suckered into suspending the well-meaning Costa for three games by nefarious media campaign.
As a result, it seems there can be little hope of Ivanovic receiving even as lenient a punishment (yet alone the 7/5-rated under 3.5 games ban) given he, unlike Diego has already been sent-off this season.