On to the next round!
Another game which Chelsea should have won comfortably but just about managed to get the job done. Chelsea beat Lille thanks to goals from Tammy, and Azpi in the first half and while a late goal by Remy created a bit of panic the players were able to see out the game. Lampard made some changes to the lineup with Kepa in goal, Emerson in for James, Rudiger in for Christensen, Zouma, and Azpilicueta. Jorginho returned for Mount while Kovacic and Kante remained in the midfield. Pulisic, Willian and Tammy continued to play upfront. Lille also rested a few of their starting XI players as the result would not have impacted their fortunes at all.
Chelsea began the game in the usual fashion as we pressed actively and created chance after chance. The final pass was lacking and sometimes the finishes were way worldly. The first goal came in the 19th minute as a pass to Kante was chested by the frenchman into the path of Pulisic who made a driving run into the box and laid if off to Willian who crossed from the right into Tammy who expertly put the ball in the back of the net. Chelsea continued to dominate the half as Lille had no real opportunity but we should have easily scored a fair few more. The 2nd goal came in the 35th minute as Emerson crossed the ball from a corner and Azpi headed it in. 2-0 going into half time but it should have been way more. Chelsea dominated the 2nd half in similar fashion but once Chelsea made some substitutes the intensity fell off and Lille grew into the game. Hudson-Odoi came on for Pulisic, and Michy for Tammy. Remy scored in the 78th minute to give Lille a small bounce as Mount was brought on for Kovacic. Chelsea saw out the game though and we reached the next round.
Chelsea finish 2nd in the group because of losing the clean sheet and now we might face slightly stronger teams than we would have faced if we finished 1st. The players can be happy with the progression though and we have a January window to strengthen before we return to the competition. The whole starting XI played well in this game and everyone had bright moments but also some mistakes in them. Goals remain a problem and our ability to finish them is one we might need to fix in January. Next up is Bournemouth at the Bridge in another big weekend of Premier League football. COME ON YOU BLUES!!!