Once again, a game of two halves!
Chelsea got going on Saturday looking to seal 3 points before the international break and gain some distance from their competitors. The game went perfectly well for 45 minutes but the 2nd half was really poor and lacked quality from Chelsea, allowing Sheffield to come back in. Sheffield started their predicted lineup while the only change from last weeks lineup for Chelsea was the inclusion of Tomori in place for Christensen. There was no injury to Christensen it was just a rotation option and Tomori had played against Sheffield in the past and so would have known the opposition more.
Chelsea started off slowly but picked up pace as we controlled possession, Sheffield did well to keep Chelsea in the middle of the pitch as the likes of Pulisic, and Mount were isolated for large parts of the game. The first goal came in the 19th minute after some clever play down the middle and Tammy latched onto a rebound to finish and give Chelsea the lead. Chelsea continued to create chances but lacked that final pass on several occasions with Barkley stopping play several times. Chelsea doubled the lead in the 43rd minute after a mix up between Sheffield’s centre backs allowed Tammy to latch on to a loose ball and once again finish. 4 goals in 4 for our forward and a 2-0 lead looked going into half time.
The 2nd half though started off poorly as Robinson scored in the 46th minute for the Blades as Azpilicueta was nutmegged and caught out to allow the goal. Sheffield were the better side in the 2nd half as they had the better chances and Chelsea failed to create any meaningful opportunity. Willian, Michy, and Billy Gilmour came on in the final few minutes to perhaps see out the game but a good cross in the box in the 89th minute was caught an attempt to block from Zouma and unluckily it deflected into our own net. The game ended 2-2 and Lampard still seeks his first win at home.
Player wise the Kepa was good and really could have not done much for the goals, Azpilicueta again was poor and was largely at fault for the two goals. I strongly believe that Azpi’s days at right back are over as he does not have the legs for it, he might also need a rest something he has not had for a long time. Reece James post international break will be a welcome addition. Zouma and Tomori were actually impressive and it looks like it will be a healthy competition at centre back along with Christensen, and Rudiger. Emerson was impressive once again but looked like he lacked some legs during the final parts of the game. Jorginho was good and Kovacic worked hard but was subbed off has he looked like his batteries were drained. Mount played at left wing for large parts of the game and he was ok but Sheffield basically isolated him. The same goes for Pulisic and some fans are getting on the young American’s back because they expect some Hazard level masterclass from him. Pulisic is not Hazard, he is a 20 year old American prospect who like the rest of our Academy graduates will grow into the team. Expecting anything more than that from him after four games in a new league is unfair. Barkley was poor and it looks like he will be 3rd choice once RLC is back to fitness. Tammy was great in the first half but went missing in the 2nd as he will continue to learn and grow.
Chelsea fielded their youngest team ever yesterday and with that should come a realisation that they will learn as the season goes on. Fans can’t have it both ways it’s either you play younger players and see them progress and learn or you play deadwood and then cry because you know that’s the best they will get. Chelsea will have Rudiger, Kante, Hudson-Odoi, and Reece James coming back in 14 days while RLC will join closer to the new year. That’s arguably 4 starters missing from our squad it will get better and the people beginning to cry now won’t deserve the team when we get going. COME ON YOU BLUES!!!