Chelsea started brightly in the cold, driving rain of West London, and should’ve had a goal inside of two minutes, when João Félix set up a chance that neither Kai Havertz nor Lewis Hall were able to finish off. Welcome to Chelsea, João!
And Félix was indeed lively and fun (UPDATE: until he wasn’t), and everything good that Chelsea did or created, especially in the first half flowed through him.
However, he alone could not overcome the team’s familiar issues, the lack of cutting edge in front of goal, the lack of control in midfield, and the shakiness at the back. It was the latter that let Fulham take the lead halfway through the first half — and of course it was Willian who would score, and then try to mute his celebrations.
Fulham also hit the woodwork in that first half, taking advantage of multiple mistakes and turnovers to put us under pressure and create chances.
The second half began in perfect fashion as well, and this time Chelsea did score inside of two minutes: Koulibaly poking the ball in after Mount had surprised the goalkeeper by going for goal from a tight angle free kick and hit the post.
And then things went off the rails, with Denis Zakaria going off injured, Félix getting sent off for a reckless tackle, and Chelsea conceding from a simple cross not long after.
We managed a semi-decent response, but never really looked like scoring again, especially without Félix.
- Four changes from Sunday, with Silva, Azpilicueta, Zakaria, and new signing João Félix getting starts
- No proactive changes until the final 10 minutes, and then a quadruple switch
- Zakaria brings the injured numbers back up to 10. It did not look good for him.
- Straight red for Félix, so expect a three-match ban for the dangerous tackle
- Fulham’s second win against Chelsea in the league in 35 years.
- That’s 1 win from 9 in all competitions, and 1 win from 9 in the league (6 points).
- Next up: Crystal Palace at home on Sunday