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Leeds United 0-0 Chelsea, Premier League: Statistical Review and Analysis

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The numbers behind the game

Leeds United v Chelsea - Premier League Photo by Lindsey Parnaby - Pool/Getty Images

Overview

Chelsea were held scoreless by Leeds in a game that was expected to feature plenty of goals but ended up featuring none. For the first time under Tuchel, Chelsea were dragged into an open end-to-end affair, for about half an hour, before slowing down the game and taking it into more familiar territory.

Édouard Mendy made a pair of stunning saves to keep Leeds out in what were the best chances of the game. Chelsea’s possession did not translate to meaningful chances and all said and done, Leeds were comfortable with individual match-ups all over the pitch.

Considering just how vulnerable Leeds have been, not creating enough chances is a disappointment similar to the game against Southampton. While Chelsea’s current approach works a dream in big games, one gets the impression we can do better if we adopt a slightly more expansive approach in smaller ones.


Match statistics

Statistics from fbref and understat.

Note: some statistics on the player charts might not corroborate with those presented in the “stats of note” sections. This is because the stats for the charts are obtained from a different source and not fbref. In most cases, the differences will be minimal — such as Kanté having 4 clearances according to fbref and 6 according to Opta.


Individual ratings

Thomas Tuchel

Tuchel rotated heavily, as he has done often in his tenure so far, and briefly even flirted with a shift in formation. Selections were made with an eye on the mid-week game and that was totally understandable.

As noted in the previous game, Chelsea once again struggled to break down their opponents when the score was level. While isolated attacks and individual quality helped Chelsea gain a lead against Everton, there was no such inspiration here.

It is important that Tuchel finds the right balance between attack and defense soon. While 15 shots and 8 on target sounds good on paper, the truth is most (if not all) of them were harmless. Tuchel has brought in a much-needed dose of pragmatism but should be careful to not hold the team back offensively.

RATING: 6.5


Leeds United v Chelsea - Premier League - Elland Road Photo by Lindsey Parnaby/PA Images via Getty Images

Édouard Mendy

Made two very important saves with the second one being particularly important. In terms of shot-stopping, this was his most busy performance in months.

Note: fbref have Mendy with 3 saves, but all other data providers have him with 4.

Stats of note
4 saves (4 shots on target faced)

RATING: 7


Christian Pulisic

His pace and dribbling ability, combined with the amount of space our right wing-backs typically have, meant he was a promising fit for his new role on paper. However, his actual output was disappointing and he had an underwhelming game after a bright first 20 minutes.

Stats of note
3 shots - 2nd
5 touches in penalty box - 2nd
6 progressive passes received - 2nd

RATING: 6


Leeds United v Chelsea - Premier League Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

César Azpilicueta

Struggled a little bit when he was asked to play as a full-back for brief spells, with his lack of pace painfully evident. Looked a lot more comfortable once was asked to tuck in.

Stats of note
2 aerial duels won (3 contested) - 1st
5 clearances - 2nd
16 loose-ball recoveries - 2nd
5 passes into final third - 3rd
5 progressive passes - Joint 3rd

RATING: 6.5


Andreas Christensen

Had an outing that was solid but someway short of his recent level. His game in the air in particular (0 aerial duels won, 3 lost) was concerning. However, he showed flashes of decent ball progression.

Stats of note
14 loose-ball recoveries - 3rd
5 progressive passes - Joint 3rd

RATING: 6.5


Antonio Rüdiger

Made a pair of crucial interventions in the first half to ensure Leeds did not make much of their momentum. His game on the ball was consistently good too.

Stats of note
6 clearances - 1st
6 carries into final third - 1st
2 aerial duels won (4 contested) - 1st
2 interceptions - Joint 1st
6 passes into final third - 2nd
3 tackles - Joint 2nd
6 progressive carries - 3rd

RATING: 7.5


Ben Chilwell

Had a forgettable day in the final third, with many promising situations ending with a poor touch or cross from Chilwell. He held his own defensively considering the quality of wingers he was up against and the mismatches generated but his offensive play was underwhelming.

Stats of note
2 interceptions - Joint 1st
3 tackles - Joint 2nd
2 shots - 3rd
16 pressures - 3rd
3 touches in penalty box - 3rd

RATING: 6


Jorginho

Was dealt with too easily on and off-the-ball. He was the only outfield starter to not make a single progressive pass and his ball progression was very poor otherwise, too: 3 passes into the final third, 22 successful backward passes, 9 successful sideways passes and 20 successful forward passes.

Stats of note
N/A

RATING: 5


N’Golo Kanté

Had a terrific display in terms of defense, passing and dribbling. Playing as a “double six” seems to provide him with the base to intelligently pick his spots to win the ball back and circulate it in midfield and final third.

Stats of note
9 passes into final third - 1st
7 progressive passes - 1st
4 tackles - 1st
6 successful dribbles (8 attempted) - 1st
18 loose-ball recoveries - 1st
6 shot-creating actions - Joint 1st
3 key passes - Joint 1st
2 interceptions - Joint 1st
11 progressive carries - Joint 1st
4 carries into final third - Joint 2nd
4 clearances - 3rd

RATING: 8


Hakim Ziyech

Had an uneven performance, one that is hard to describe or rate. He was anonymous for large periods of the game but provided a spark out of nowhere occasionally. The main question at this point is, are the potential rewards worth his inconsistency? The answer is entirely subjective.

Stats of note
6 shot-creating actions - Joint 1st
3 key passes - Joint 1st
17 pressures - 2nd
2 successful dribbles (4 attempted) - Joint 2nd
2 passes into penalty box - 3rd

RATING: 6.5


Kai Havertz

Was fantastic at linking play and bringing his teammates into play. His ability to retain the ball under pressure and execute different kinds of passes is a highly valuable trait. More promisingly, he got off a healthy amount of shots on top of his associative play. He can be even better if he can stay a little bit closer to goal and trust his teammates to bring him the ball in the final third.

Stats of note
4 shots - 1st
8 touches in penalty box - 1st
3 passes into penalty box - 2nd
7 progressive passes received - 2nd

RATING: 7


Mason Mount

Played a few exceptional passes to speed up our offensive play and was superb in build-up as he usually is. However, his final ball was not great and he gives the impression that we can get a lot more out of him in terms of ball progression by playing him slightly deeper.

He is still good when playing close to goal because he is an objectively excellent footballer but does this role get the best out of him?

Stats of note
4 passes into penalty box - 1st
18 pressures - 1st
8 progressive passes received - 1st
11 progressive carries - Joint 1st
2 aerial duels won (3 contested) - 1st
2 key passes - 2nd
6 progressive passes - 2nd
3 tackles - Joint 2nd
2 successful dribbles (5 attempted) - Joint 2nd
4 carries into final third - Joint 2nd

RATING: 7


Substitutes

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

Reece James (68th minute) — Provided width on the right but could not tilt the scales in our favour.

Timo Werner (69th minute) — Did not have a good performance off the bench and was easily contained.

Callum Hudson-Odoi (79th minute) — Had one shot after some decent footwork but nothing else of note.