We beat Bournemouth!!
Chelsea travelled to the Vitality Stadium on Tuesday night to play Bournemouth in a pre-season friendly. Bournemouth managed by Scott Parker had some key players on show like Brooks and Billing while Tuchel picked an interesting starting XI. Kepa started in goal with Sterling, Baker, and Sarr making up the back 3. Hudson-Odoi, and Alonso played as the wing-backs while Drinkwater, and Gallagher played as the midfielders. Ziyech and Pulisic played behind Tammy who started up front. A 3-4-3 and plenty of quality on show.
The tempo of the game was very good from the beginning and Chelsea had a chance in the opening minutes as Ziyech played in Tammy. Bournemouth had a few chances as well but Chelsea began to control the game as the half went on. Chelsea had a couple more chances with Tammy getting a shot on target and drawing a point blank save from Bournemouth. Tammy also had a header which he sent over. Hudson-Odoi had a couple of half chances while Ziyech also enjoyed his time finding space between the lines. The midfield did well in the 1st half with Drinkwater conducting things well and showing some good ball distribution. The half ended 0-0 though with neither team finding the breakthrough.
The 2nd half saw some changes for Chelsea with Mendy, Miazga, Chalobah, Clarke-Salter, Loftus-Cheek, Barkley, and Broja coming on. Alonso, Hudson-Odoi, Tammy, and Gallagher stayed on. The tempo and momentum did take a hit with so many changes and the team looked disjointed. This allowed Bournemouth to get the first goal in the 66th minute via Marcondes. Chelsea calmed down after the goal and RLC began to drop back and help out Gallagher in the midfield. Ugbo, Rahman, and Zappacosta came on for Tammy, Alonso, and CHO. Broja got the equaliser in the 72nd minute after a brilliant ball from Rahman. Ugbo then got the winner in the 76th minute after heading in a cross from Barkley. Chelsea were able to see out the game for the win.
Chelsea Team Review
Kepa and Mendy both had relatively quiet halves although Kepa was the busier of the two. The distribution from both keepers was lacking and they probably want to work on that in the coming weeks. Other than that it was a routine game. The goal wasn’t Mendy’s fault.
The first half centre backs were a better combination than the 2nd half one. Sterling showed pace and strength on the right while Baker was calm in the centre, and Sarr made some good interceptions. In the 2nd half the defence was disjointed and it took some time for it to calm down. Safe to say that out of the centre backs Sterling is probably the only one who is sticking around. The rest could be sold or head out on loan. Alonso was good as usual while Zappacosta, and Rahman played well. Rahman got an assist might stick around. Hudson-Odoi played as a wing-back as well and looked the fittest of the lot. Good deliveries into the box and should have got an assist or two.
Gallagher, Drinkwater, Loftus-Cheek, and Barkley all played in the midfield. Gallagher played the full 90 and showed plenty of energy in the 1st half. Towards the end of the game it was clear he was tired and as the loan CDM he struggled until Loftus-Cheek dropped in. Drinkwater did well in his 45 minutes, some brilliant passes and quick 1 touch distribution. Drinkwater should get a sale or loan to a decent club. Barkley looked disjointed while Loftus-Cheek took a few minutes to get going but controlled the midfield well and ran away from a few players only to be pulled back. Gallagher and Loftus-Cheek are probably the only two looking at a potential squad spot.
Ziyech enjoyed his first 45 minutes and should have got an assist or two. Ziyech looks fitter and ready to go. Pulisic was decent but relatively quiet on the left hand side. Tammy overall was decent enough and ran his socks off but since he is the most likely to leave getting a goal or two would have been great. Tammy didn’t finish some very good chances and was brought off in the 2nd half. Broja, and Ugbo came on in the 2nd half and did well. Broja particularly impressed with his hold up play and got the goal as well. The final pass was lacking and that was clear to see. Not the finished product by any means but it was good to see Broja fight for a potential spot. Ugbo got a goal but I think he’s on his way to Genk.
A win in pre-season and a comeback win at that. Tuchel was pretty clear that this group of players won’t be playing together in the coming games. It was a good chance for Tuchel to see some players who could possibly stay though.
A win against Bournemouth should always be cherished and Chelsea did that. Several of the players that played won’t be at Chelsea when the season starts but it was a chance to show their quality to potential buyers. Some players made a case to stick around but it really is only their first game. Two London Derby’s against Arsenal and Tottenham which should see the 7 regular players return to the squad.
COME ON CHELSEA!!!