Another day of ball possession dominance. Another day where an ever-growing number of passes did not translate into proper chances at goal, while our opponents had the exact opposite experience.
The first half was an absolute “borefest”, with Chelsea’s 453 passes turning into 5 shots, only one of them on target. Wolves did what they could to stop the Blues dead on their track, and they succeeded with the help of uncalled handballs in the box to boot.
Second half seemed set to head in the same direction until Wolves scored a typical “smash and grab” goal by playing five passes from start of play until finishing their first chance in the entire game. Striker Raúl Jiménez added his 12th league goal of the season, inflicting more pain in our misery as his shot slowly made its way into the back of the net after Azpilicueta’s attempted block.
In a bid to turn the game around, coach Maurizio Sarri went as far as trying something new by bringing youth into play with Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Callum Hudson-Odoi substituting Mateo Kovacic and Pedro, respectively, and then changing his entire system with Willian entering the game in place of Jorginho. None of these chances made the necessary impact, however.
It was Hazard instead who went on to partially save the day with a marvellous long ranged late effort. Still far from the ideal result, as Chelsea fail to profit on favourable results to get back in Premier League’s top four.
- Starters return to their usual places after heavy rotation in the Dynamo Kiev match, with Pedro getting the starting nod ahead of Willian in attack and Kovacic over Barkley in the midfield.
- Emerson seems to have done enough to convince Sarri he should be at the very least part of our rotation in the left-back position. Neat!
- All those shots against Wolverhampton, most of them blocked, the few on target not making opposing keeper Rui Patrício sweat as much as he should. The greatest blight of this team under Sarri.
- Subs were RLC for Kovacic, CHO for Pedro and Willian for Jorginho.
- Next up: Europa League round of 16 return leg against Dynamo Kiev in Ukraine. 3-0 lead for us from the first outing.
- KTBFFH and remember: be civil.