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Kalas: "I didn't have time to get nervous"

A pair of Chelsea heroes do battle
A pair of Chelsea heroes do battle
Clive Brunskill

Jose Mourinho's biggest gamble at Anfield was the inclusion of 20-year-old Czech centre back Tomas Kalas in the starting lineup. With John Terry injured and both David Luiz and Gary Cahill rested, Kalas stepped in to make his first ever Premier League appearance against the league leaders in their own home. He proceeded to help the Blues keep a clean sheet, because that's what Tomas Kalas does.

[Was I nervous?] No, and I must admit that surprised me. Maybe it was like that because I only learned about my presence in the starting XI on Sunday, so I didn't have time to get nervous...

...Hopefully people couldn't tell that it was my first game. Naturally, I learned where I need to improve and I what I have to work on, but overall I had a good feeling.

-Kalas. Source: via Sky Sports.

Tomas 'cold as ice' Kalas didn't look a bit out of place. There was one horrendously dicey moment when Liverpool drove through the centre and he didn't check behind him, but other than that it was essentially a dream debut. The Reds helped him by being entirely predictable and Mourinho helped him by ensuring that there was a blue wall thrown up through the middle of the pitch whenever the hosts even thought about attacking, but Kalas had a part to play, and play it to perfection. The two crunching tackles on Raheem Sterling and Luis Suarez were particular highlights.

I'm not even annoyed that he missed the free header on that corner, because if he had scored (and he probably should have done), we wouldn't have had our Steven Gerrard moment. And Gerrard took this game from 'great win' to 'brilliant, forever-in-the-memory comedy'. Even when Kalas makes mistakes, they turn out for the best in the end.

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