Given the narrative surrounding this match, you knew that Brighton would be more than up for it. Well, we knew that and they knew that and you knew that, but Chelsea evidently did not know that, as the home side swept away the hapless visitors, scoring early and often to jump out to a 2-0 lead, then adding a third to essentially kill off the game just before half.
Multiple mistakes at the back made things easy for the hosts, but so did the incredibly open tactical setup that we also saw in Salzburg, but were not punished for then. Leandro Trossard scored inside of five minutes after Silva headed off the line twice in quick succession, then Ruben Loftus-Cheek scored an unfortunate own goal after a corner deflected off of him. But Brighton were far and away the better team those first 20 minutes, and a two-goal lead was nothing they didn’t merit.
Chelsea grew into things at that point, and failed to convert a couple clear cut chances to add to the hilarity and frustration of this game. Maybe if one of those goes in, we’re talking a different outcome. Instead, Brighton kept exploiting the wide open spaces we gave them, and got their third, with Trevoh Chalobah deflecting a cross beyond Kepa on a despairing sliding block attempt.
Chelsea were out of the blocks quickly in the second half, and Havertz got us on the board after a great cross from Gallagher. We kept up the pressure, and even created a few good chances, but a second goal didn’t really seem all that likely with Brighton sagging back and defending in numbers. Havertz missed an easy chance late on that could’ve made things interesting, but instead we gave up a fourth in added-on time just to confirm the absolute embarrassment of this afternoon.
- Just two changes from midweek, with RLC in for Jorginho and Mount for P-EA. Same formation, this time found out.
- Half-time change to a back-four, with RLC dropping in as a makeshift right back.
- Kepa seemed to be favoring his right leg in the first-half and was taken off at the half.
- Potter loses for the first time as Chelsea manager, in his 10th game.
- Chalobah’s personal unbeaten streak also comes to an end.
- Newcastle won easily to solidify their top-four claim. Spurs
dropped two points at Bournemouth but are now also three points aheadwon it late — both with an extra game played. Man United play tomorrow at home against West Ham and will go into fifth with a win.
- Next up: Dinamo Zagreb in a dead rubber match in the Champions League