We have two weeks to cherish, analyze, revel in, reminisce about, and over-extrapolate from Saturday’s scintillating 5-0 win over Everton, which featured stellar individual performances from every Chelsea starter — except Thibaut Courtois who literally had nothing to do in the Chelsea goal — not to mention amazing teamplay drilled through hours of training under the tutelage of Antonio Conte.
Let’s start with something small and fun. Eden Hazard had one of his best games ever for Chelsea while his fellow outside forward Pedro had easily his best game for the club with a goal and two assists and technique and accuracy of play not seen since he wore the colors of Barcelona. Hazard and Pedro were also responsible for two of the best skills in the game.
Here’s Hazard, getting the move started for Chelsea’s second goal, with a wonderful turn to shake two defenders off his back.
I wish we had a closer look at this one to properly appreciate it; the clip starts with Hazard on the ground but getting up quickly to receive Cahill’s pass. With two yellow shirts closing him down, one from behind and the other one from his right, he controls and drags the ball back with his first-touch, precisely into the space between the two defenders. It’s simply not fair to have eyes in the back of one’s head, Eden.
Pedro’s turn to set up the Costa chance at the end of the first half was a slightly more straightforward move, but nonetheless effective and impressive as he split the space between Williams closing from behind and left back (Funes Mori?) tracking back on the play. Pedro then beats both for space before inspiring Costa to do his own turn.
(Yes, we could also highlight the Hazard-Pedro interplay on Hazard’s second goal, which featured a scrumptious backheel from Pedro, but maybe we’ll save that for later.)
But speaking of Costa, let’s do a bonus defense-splitting highlight, with his control (missing from the clip) and the outside of the boot flick to run between the two Everton men.
This play led to Chelsea’s fifth goal (Pedro) on the night, but the show had begun well before then.