All the latest news and views from Stamford Bridge.
Accustomed to big games having featured in some of Chelsea's most historic matches in recent years, England centre back Gary Cahill is aware of the pressure that is associated with must-win games such as the one the Three Lions find themselves in on Tuesday evening, against Poland, at Wembley Stadium.
Victory secures the country's route to Brazil in 2014 in what will likely be one of the most memorable World Cup finals in the modern era. A draw, or loss, will effectively mean a nervous play-off encounter.
Speaking to the official website of the FA, Cahill said: 'It’s a bit nervy in the sense that we don’t know what to expect. They [Poland] can’t qualify now, so are they going to go out relaxed and play care-free football, are they going to change things up? It’s hard to predict, but one thing we can be in control of is how we go out and play.'
England are top of their group but as Ukraine are virtually guaranteed a win against European minnows San Marino, Roy Hodgson must engineer a winning scoreline against the Poles: 'These are the games you look forward to, even though the pressure is on, you do look forward to them,' added Cahill.
'Hopefully it’ll go the right way and we’ll win the game Tuesday night. I do hate talking before a game, because you never know in football what is going to happen. But it’s down to our attitude.'
Back to club football (temporarily) and winger Kevin de Bruyne, often reported to be chasing a Stamford Bridge exit, has clarified the situation with Jose Mourinho. He is quoted by Sky Sports to have said: 'Am I panicking? Of course not. Honestly, I’m not worried. You seem to be more worried than me. Mourinho is the boss and he decides who plays.
'He tells me when I’ve done something wrong, but I’ve heard nothing as negative from him as what I’ve been reading in the media.'
Back to the international fold but sticking with Belgium and attacking playmaker Eden Hazard was one of a few Belgium players caught celebrating their nation's passage to the World Cup finals (see embedded video below, but be warned… the language is street).
And finally, here's a photograph of Premier League defence destroyer Romelu Lukaku when he was banging them in at ten years of age (and yes, he is the one head and shoulders above everyone else).
image: © Ben Sutherland