Chelsea did not start as well as we did over the weekend, but we did manage to do one thing we couldn’t at all against West Ham, score a goal!
It took Tammy Abraham less than 25 minutes to get his eleventh goal of the Premier League campaign, heading in Reece James’s accurate cross from just outside the corner of the penalty area, in a move reminiscent of the Azpilicueta-to-Morata connection of a few years ago.
Chelsea had been peppering the Villa penalty area with crosses, and while the team’s play overall wasn’t too fluid, we looked to be firmly in control.
Alas, Villa’s first truly coherent move of the game got them their equalizer, as they worked the ball around wonderfully for a cross from the right. Wesley missed his header, but Trezeguet didn’t, even if he didn’t really know much about the bundled finish that eventually bounced in off his own knees. They all count.
Chelsea started the second half with much more intent, purpose, and determination (and quality!), and we didn’t have to wait too long to reap the rewards. A wonderful move between Willian, Abraham, and Mount got the Blues back in the lead.
While Chelsea were unable to add to that lead — Tom Heaton pulling off at least two spectacular saves, one on twinkle-toes Pulisic from 5 yards and one on Willian’s free kick from 25 — we also managed to not concede again.
- Similar setup to Chelsea’s last win in the Premier League, the 2-0 against Crystal Palace. Same front six, with James and Christensen the difference in defense.
- Late changes in Batshuayi for Abraham (who appeared to clash knees with Mings just a few minutes prior — hopefully nothing serious), Hudson-Odoi for Pulisic, and Jorginho for Willian for the final few minutes (switch to 4-3-3).
- With Spurs losing the Mourinho Derby at Old Trafford, but Wolves beating West Ham United 2-0 (so that’s how that’s done!), Chelsea remain six points clear of fifth place and three points behind third place Manchester City. Leicester City won as well to stay second, while Liverpool continue to lead with a seemingly unassailable advantage after beating Everton in the Merseyside Derby.
- Next up: Everton away on Saturday