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Southampton 1-1 Chelsea, Premier League: Statistical Review and Analysis

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The numbers behind the game

FBL-ENG-PR-SOUTHAMPTON-CHELSEA Photo by NEIL HALL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Overview

A frustrating afternoon ended with Chelsea and Southampton sharing points after a largely drab game. Southampton pressed hard but lacked any semblance of confidence on the ball while Chelsea continued recent creative issues and attacking woes.

Barring the first half at home against Newcastle — a game which Chelsea have historically dominated — Tuchel’s Blues have yet to fully convince in an attacking sense. There are mitigating factors, which is why frustration over this attacking impotency should not give way to panic yet.

Continuing another recent theme, Chelsea were sturdy defensively barring one moment of individual misjudgment. The main tasking facing Tuchel and his staff is combining this solidity with more attacking flair. The 3-4-3, which has throttled the team’s attacking play against smaller teams, is well suited to the sequence of big games coming up.


Match statistics

Statistics from fbref and understat.


Individual ratings

Thomas Tuchel

The 3-4-3 setup created some promising situations, such as getting Werner directly 1v1 against the far slower Bednárek, but the team’s inability to create a significant quantity of good chances is concerning. While the team’s solidity should ensure that we have a chance in big games, an uptick in chances created against smaller teams needs to come sooner than later.

On a more positive note, the midfield balance was very promising for large parts of the game. Kanté and Kovačić showed better chemistry than they did under Lampard and could potentially act as a solid midfield base once our attackers return to form. Even if Kovačić did not have a dazzling display, there were plenty of positive signs in that partnership.

RATING: 6


Southampton v Chelsea - Premier League - St Mary’s Stadium Photo by Neil Hall/PA Images via Getty Images

Édouard Mendy

Was beaten by a sublime piece of skill and finish by Minamino. Did not have much to do otherwise. His distribution was fine but nothing remarkable in either a positive or negative sense.

RATING: 5.5


Reece James

His offensive skillset still seems very unsuited to the wing-back role and he was nowhere near his best in that regard. Chelsea’s current possession-heavy style means he will always rack up the passing and ball-carrying stats, but there were few moments of substance.

Stats of note
3 passes into penalty box - 1st among Chelsea players
6 dribbles completed (6 attempted) - 1st
11 progressive carries - 1st
3 carries into final third - 1st
2 carries into penalty box - 2nd
8 progressive passes - Joint 2nd
4 touches in penalty box - 3rd
7 progressive passes received - 3rd

RATING: 6


César Azpilicueta

He was partly culpable for the goal conceded but he was put in a very tricky position wherein he had to choose between closing the space to Zouma or tracking Ings — both risky in their own way. His passing burden was slightly increased by Zouma’s off-day in that sense and he covered admirably. He was excellent in duels, both in the air and on the ground.

Stats of note
7 aerial duels won (10 contested) - 1st
17 loose-ball recoveries - 1st
6 passes into final third - Joint 2nd
8 progressive passes - Joint 2nd
3 tackles - Joint 2nd
3 clearances - 3rd

RATING: 6.5


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

Kurt Zouma

His tendency to follow the ball, which is often justified by his ability to win duels. started the chain of events that led to Minamino’s goal. He was fine defensively after that moment but his ball progression was very poor barring one pass to Alonso in the first half.

Stats of note
7 clearances - 1st
14 loose-ball recoveries - Joint 2nd
6 aerial duels won (7 contested) - Joint 2nd

RATING: 6


Antonio Rüdiger

Was excellent on the ball, moving it forward with real purpose and speed. Was not tested much defensively.

Stats of note
15 passes into final third - 1st
2 shots - Joint 1st
4 clearances - 2nd
8 progressive passes - Joint 2nd
2 carries into final third - Joint 2nd
14 loose-ball recoveries - Joint 2nd
6 aerial duels won (7 contested) - Joint 2nd
6 progressive carries - Joint 3rd

RATING: 7


Marcos Alonso

His passing radar was off from the start and he never got into the game. His thinking in the final third was muddled at times too, as best shown by the time he passed up on a potentially promising shot after an advantage played in order to take a free-kick — one he promptly fired into the wall.

Stats of note
2 key passes - Joint 1st
2 shots - Joint 1st
2 shot-creating actions - Joint 2nd
3 tackles - Joint 2nd
14 pressures - Joint 2nd

RATING: 5


Southampton v Chelsea - Premier League - St Mary’s Stadium Photo by Kirsty Wigglesworth/PA Images via Getty Images

Mateo Kovačić

Had a sub-par game in terms of passing the ball forward, as reflected by his absence from the top 3 in both progressive passes and passes into final third. His progressive carrying was not impressive either.

While this was a disappointing display, there are mitigating factors such as his workload and Southampton’s press. While his recent form has been very good, despite the underwhelming display against Southampton, his fatigue might be an issue.

Stats of note
2 shot-creating actions - Joint 2nd
2 dribbles completed (3 attempted) - 3rd

RATING: 6


N’Golo Kanté

Was incredible defensively, disrupting Southampton’s ball movement almost entirely by himself at times. Was among the best team’s movers of the ball too. His main drawback during the game was his play in the final third, with a couple of heavy touches holding the team’s offense back in promising situations. His level declined as the game went on.

Stats of note
9 progressive passes - 1st
7 tackles - 1st
5 interceptions - 1st
6 passes into final third - Joint 2nd
14 pressures - Joint 2nd

RATING: 7.5


FBL-ENG-PR-SOUTHAMPTON-CHELSEA Photo by MICHAEL STEELE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Mason Mount

In the first half, he showed signs of mental fatigue — epitomized by quite a few uncharacteristically slow passes. His game picked up in the second half and he won the penalty that led to the equalizer. As noted in the game against Newcastle United, his progressive passing duties have significantly dropped compared to the Lampard days and his play was almost entirely focused in the final third.

Stats of note
1 goal
7 shot-creating actions - 1st
7 touches in penalty box - 1st
2 key passes - Joint 1st
3 carries into penalty box - Joint 1st
4 completed dribbles (4 attempted) - 1st
10 progressive carries - 2nd
12 progressive passes received - 2nd
2 carries into final third - Joint 2nd

RATING: 7.5


Tammy Abraham

Had an anonymous display and was hooked at half-time. Tammy could have done a lot better to open up space in the box — something he does well generally but was missing against Southampton. This writer would have liked him to play on for at least 15-20 minutes due to his mobility in the final third but this was an objectively bad display — the sort he cannot afford to have too often.

Stats of note
N/A

RATING: 5


Timo Werner

After a series of promising displays, this was an average performance. He was released into a few promising locations, especially against slower defenders, but he could not capitalize on them. Instead of cutting onto his stronger foot, he insisted on taking it on his left and firing a cross that was easily defended.

Stats of note
13 progressive passes received - 1st
3 carries into penalty box - Joint 1st
6 touches in penalty box - 2nd
2 shot-creating actions - Joint 2nd
6 progressive carries - Joint 3rd

RATING: 6


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

Substitutes

Callum Hudson-Odoi (46th minute) — His situation dominated the headlines after the game, as is expected when a player is brought on and off in the same game. While everything around Callum tends to get overblown, this writer was not overly impressed with his display. He is capable of a lot more and his passivity was infuriating at times. The Callum on the pitch was not the real Callum; no one knows why he played the way he did. That being said, frictions like this are common in most sporting relationships. He and Tuchel will be fine.

Hakim Ziyech (76th minute) — Looked out of his depth against tired Southampton defenders. While he was not passive like Hudson-Odoi, he was laughably easy to defend.

Jorginho (76th minute) — Nothing of note.