Chelsea started the match well enough, and were fortunate to grab the early lead when Gary Cahill went down injured, opening space for Willian to pick out Olivier Giroud, who slotted home with consummate ease. (So sorry, Gaz, but also thanks?)
The Blues were firmly in control after that, threatening repeatedly. We didn’t have to wait too long for Pulisic to double Chelsea’s lead with a hammer of a shot at the near post.
As impressive as Pulisic’s finish was, Zaha upstaged him ten minutes later however, with a 25-yard bomb that was either a great shot or a savable shot, but certainly not both. It was a lot more even contest after that, which is how the second half began as well.
After Giroud missed a good chance to restore Chelsea’s two-goal lead, he made way for Tammy Abraham as Lampard shuffled his cards a bit. Loftus-Cheek also came on, and the two substitutes combined brilliantly to restore Chelsea’s two-goal lead.
Unfortunately, that didn’t even last a minute, as Palace walked through Chelsea’s right side at the other end and Benteke ended his goal drought at Selhurst Park with a simple tap-in from a nice Van Aanholt cross.
Fortunately, that was the end of the scoring, though not before Palace hit the post late on and missed at least two great chances to equalize.
Three goals, three points, three the magic sponsor.
- Just one change for Chelsea from Saturday: Billy Gilmour in for the injured N’Golo Kante
- Like-for-like changes in Abraham (for Giroud), RLC (for Barkley), Jorginho (for Gilmour). Again not using the full complement of five.
- Another no-start for Jorginho, but at least a sub appearance, his first since the Restart
- Giroud, Pulisic on the scoresheet again: standard; Willian picking up the assist on both
- Abraham breaks his goalscoring drought with his 14th Premier League goal (16th overall). RLC picks up the assist.
- Chelsea move up to third, temporarily. Leicester City play in a few minutes (away to Arsenal). Manchester United play on Thursday.
- Next up: Sheffield United away on Saturday