clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Chelsea 0-2 Liverpool, Premier League: Statistical Review and Analysis

New, comments

The numbers behind the game

Chelsea v Liverpool - Premier League Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

Overview

On paper, Chelsea’s depleted team only had the faintest of chances against the reigning champions and the gulf in class was reiterated over the course of 90 minutes. For all the talk of Chelsea’s summer spending spree, only two new signings started today — one visibly not match fit yet.

Chelsea started with a clear defensive plan in mind and did a great job at stifling Liverpool’s threat in the first half. The likes of Werner and Havertz found themselves in reasonably promising positions on the ball too, albeit without converting them into meaningful chances. However, the performance was marred by a rather unnecessary foul from Christensen, which effectively ended the game. Beating Liverpool with 11 men is tough enough as it is, to do so with 10 is close to impossible and Chelsea were made to pay.

Firmino did an excellent job stretching the defence before whipping in a cross for Mane to convert to open the scoring. Liverpool soon doubled the lead through a goal of entirely Chelsea’s making. The world’s most expensive goalkeeper picked Mane as the lucky recipient of what seems like a weekly gift at this point. Jorginho had the chance to halve the deficit and perhaps offer Chelsea a glimmer of hope but missed the penalty, summing up Chelsea’s night.


Match statistics

Stats from fbref and understat.


Individual ratings

Frank Lampard

His setup was designed to limit Liverpool’s final third threat and performed its function in the first half. In hindsight, he could have perhaps picked a more attacking setup but this is not a black-and-white question. It was a matter of preferences and Lampard’s decisions were justified when it was 11 versus 11.

The bigger gripe, though, is in terms of the team selection. To pick Kepa is to walk into most games a goal down; Lampard should know this better than anyone else. To pick him over Caballero is a mind-boggling decision that has cost Chelsea numerous times over the past few months.

The same applies for his continued selection and championing of Jorginho. Chelsea outplayed the likes of Manchester City and Leicester City with Kanté at the base of midfield. Sure, it is not a role that fits our best player very well, but he is still miles ahead of Jorginho there. Liverpool had plenty of joy utilizing the space ahead and behind him.

Lampard’s treatment of Tomori has been bizarre too. To bench for him Rüdiger and Christensen, who are hardly Terry and Nesta, without a meaningful chance of a comeback is not a decision that makes a lot of sense. Tomori was drafted in as an emergency option at half-time and did a admirable job.

RATING: 6


Chelsea v Liverpool - Premier League Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

Kepa Arrizabalaga

Another torrid night for the world’s most expensive goalkeeper. Dropping him will not only make the team better, but also give him the chance to recuperate mentally. A spell on the sidelines is not going to automatically turn him into even an average goalkeeper, but it will help his mental health.

RATING: 4


Reece James

Was not offered the room to express himself by Chelsea’s defensive mindset and therefore could not be particularly effective on the offensive end. He could have done better on Mane’s opener but mistakes like those are normal for a youngster.

Stats of note
3 tackles won (out of 6) - Joint 1st among Chelsea players
20 pressures - Joint 1st
2 aerial duels won (out of 2) - Joint 1st
2 interceptions - 2nd
1 pass into penalty area - 2nd
4 clearances - 3rd
3 progressive passes - Joint 3rd

RATING: 6


Chelsea v Liverpool - Premier League Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

Andreas Christensen

Christensen was having a pretty solid performance until his red card. He dealt with set-pieces and duels well, both in the air and on the ground. However, as has become the norm for him, a good spell was followed by a bad decision and in this case, a decision that derailed the whole team.

Stats of note
2 shots blocked - 2nd

RATING: 5


Kurt Zouma

Was once again the pick of Chelsea’s defenders. The team has quietly become more solid at defending set pieces recently and as a result, Zouma’s box defending ability stands out even more. He now needs to build on this and establish himself as one of the best defenders in the league.

Stats of note
9 clearances - 1st

RATING: 6.5


Chelsea v Liverpool - Premier League Photo by Chris Lee - Chelsea FC/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Marcos Alonso

Was not as bad as initially feared against Mo Salah, helped a lot by diligent defensive cover from Werner. His attacking edge, however, was missing and he did not do a great job moving the ball forward consistently.

Stats of note
11 loose ball recoveries - 1st
2 passes into final third - 3rd
3 progressive passes - Joint 3rd

RATING: 6


Jorginho

Playing a player of Jorginho’s skillset and ability against a team of Liverpool’s intensity and quality was only going to yield one result. The fact Jorginho could claim to have had a solid day by his standards represents the gulf in class between him and the elite, which is where Chelsea should aspire to be.

Stats of note
3 passes into penalty third - 2nd
2 tackles won (out of 3) - Joint 2nd
16 pressures - Joint 3rd

RATING: 5


Chelsea v Liverpool - Premier League Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Mateo Kovačić

To play your first game of the season against Liverpool is no easy task and it was one that proved to be well beyond the reach of Kovačić. He tried his hardest but ultimately, he could not contribute meaningfully on either end.

Thiago, once he came on at half-time, showed what it is to be a midfielder who can defend and contribute to attacks without necessarily putting up Lampard-esque numbers. He should be the blueprint for Kovačić, three years his junior, to follow.

Stats of note
4 passes into final third - 1st
5 progressive passes - 1st
2 successful dribbles (out of 2) - 3rd

RATING: 5.5


N’Golo Kanté

Was Chelsea’s best player alongside Timo Werner. Kanté made a rare bad decision early in the first half, opting to pass instead of shoot when in a promising position, but his game improved dramatically from thereon. He appears to be back to his best, racking up 6 tackles and interceptions against Liverpool to follow the 8 against Brighton in the first game of the season.

Stats of note
3 interceptions - 1st
3 successful tackles (out of 4) - Joint 1st
4 successful dribbles (out of 6) - 2nd
16 pressures - Joint 3rd
8 loose ball recoveries - Joint 3rd

RATING: 7


Mason Mount

Started on the right flank to cover for Robertson’s marauding runs and did a reasonably good job. However, his quality on the ball was not sharp and Liverpool had no issues containing his threat.

Stats of note
2 passes into penalty area - 1st
20 pressures - Joint 1st
3 progressive passes - Joint 3rd

RATING: 5.5


Chelsea v Liverpool - Premier League Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

Kai Havertz

Was used as the centre-forward, a role that he played for Leverkusen at the end of last season. His associative play was promising and so were his runs off-the-ball. He needs to improve his intensity off the ball, however.

RATING: 5.5


Timo Werner

The role he was used in is perhaps his best role in this Chelsea team and allows him to angle his off-the-ball runs towards the goal instead of away from the goal. He was put in too many 1v1 dribbling scenarios, mainly because other attackers did not push up well enough, but he will cause extensive damage against weaker teams in this role.

Stats of note
4 touches in penalty box - 1st
5 successful dribbles (out of 10) - 1st
3 progressive passes - Joint 2nd
10 loose ball recoveries - 3rd

RATING: 7


Substitutes

FBL-ENG-PR-CHELSEA-LIVERPOOL Photo by MICHAEL REGAN/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Fikayo Tomori (half-time)

Was brought in to replace Christensen and did a good job defending on the ground. His ability to win 50-50 duels in particular was something Chelsea have long missed.

Stats of note
3 blocked shots - 1st
8 clearances - 2nd
2 tackles won (out of 3) - Joint 2nd

RATING: 6.5


Ross Barkley (79th minute) - Nothing of note.

Tammy Abraham (79th minute) - Nothing of note.