Chelsea dominated the first 35-40 minutes of this game, both in terms of possession and in terms of chance creation, and duly took advantage of that domination when Kai Havertz found Hakim Ziyech with a very nice cross for the game’s opening goal just before the half-hour mark.
But then Ziyech got hurt in a seemingly innocuous collision (shoulder dislocation?) and Villarreal suddenly woke up, hitting the woodwork on either side of half-time.
The second half was a far less comfortable affair in fact, with Villarreal creating multiple dangerous opportunities and chances. Chelsea would bend, but not break ... until the 73rd minute, when Gerard Moreno took advantage of a series of mistakes and giveaways at the back to kiss a chip off the bottom of the crossbar and into the back of the net.
The equalizer woke Chelsea up, but neither team would find the back of the net before the 90 minutes were up, or indeed before the 120 were. Extra-time was pretty much played at a walking pace, reflective of preseason fitness levels. Christian Pulisic came closest to breaking the deadlock, but his improvised off-balance effort missed by a few inches.
And so, to penalties we went. Kepa was put on as the specialist, and Kepa indeed delivered.
- Fourth consecutive Super Cup to go into extra time, including the last time we were in it in 2019 against Liverpool.
- Third consecutive Super Cup for us to go to penalties. We finally won one.
- Five players started who also started the Champions League final (Mendy, Rudiger, Kanté, Werner, Havertz)
- T.Chalobah’s senior debut for Chelsea, playing on the right side of the back-three throughout.
- Ziyech’s injury concerning, especially on the back of such a good preseason. Massive turning point in the game. Pulisic his replacement just before half-time.
- Triple change just past the hour-mark saw Christensen slot into the center of the back three, with Jorginho in midfield, Mount between the lines and Havertz sliding into the center of the attack.
- Azpilicueta for Hudson-Odoi the final change in regulation. Chelsea settling into more of a 3-5-2 with Mount joining the midfield.
- Chelsea penalties (6): Havertz (saved), Azpilicueta (scored), Alonso (scored), Mount (scored), Jorginho (scored), Pulisic (scored), Rüdiger (scored)
- Villarreal penalties (5): Gerard Moreno (scored), Mandi (saved), Estupinan (scored), Moi Gomez (scored), Raba (scored), Foyth (scored), Albiol (saved)
- Next up: first game of the Premier League season, Saturday 3pm, against Crystal Palace at the Bridge