After the 4-0 loss to Manchester United at Old Trafford in his first match as Chelsea manager, Frank Lampard was always likely to be cautious about last night’s game. Combined with the team’s leaky defense, his choice to go with a conservative look was warranted, even if it made the game an absolute bore for neutrals.
And while winning would’ve been the ideal result, obviously — and were it not for the latest bit of VAR nonsense, we just might have gotten that all-important goal — we can still take the 0-0 draw and the clean sheet at Old Trafford as positives.
That’s what N’Golo Kanté’s choosing to do, and we should all be more like N’Golo.
“It was a difficult game for both teams. It was tight in the midfield, it was difficult to get chances, so I think a draw is a fair result.
“It’s a good thing we got a clean sheet away from home, but we wanted to win this game. It was possible. We managed to move very well the midfield of Manchester United, but it was more difficult to create chances. We take a point.
“To not concede a goal is the first step, and now we need to score more and do the right things to win the game in the future.”
The refrain has gone from “fix the defense” to “find the balance”, which is a step forward indeed.
Also notable was the performance of new goalkeeper Édouard Mendy, who’s now kept three clean sheets in his four starts, including the last three in a row. His saves proved essential last night — not many, but in big moments — and Kanté’s hoping that’s just the start.
“[Mendy] made some decisive saves. He helped us keep the clean sheet. It’s good for him, for his confidence, and good for the team.
“I hope he can keep going in this way and continue not conceding any goals.”
-N’Golo Kanté; source: Chelsea FC
So say we all.