Chelsea managed to get all three points against Everton in the early kickoff but have to say that the Blues left it really very late. Chelsea looked the better side for most parts of the game but the Blues failed to convert the chances they created due to poor finishing and some brilliant defending from the Everton backline. Chelsea threw everything at the Merseyside club but Chelsea had to wait till the 93rd minute to get the winner that keeps Chelsea top of the league.
What We Learned:
John Terry back in the team – Solid Defense:
John Terry’s return to the center of the defense was something that every Chelsea fan wanted, Yesterday he was declared fit by Jose and it was just the kind of boost Chelsea needed going into the match against Everton and it showed why. Chelsea were solid in defense and the Cahill – JT partnership kept its shape throughout and JT popped up with the winner in injury time.
Azpilicueta, Cahill and John Terry were the stand out performers for Chelsea today. I have said it in the past and i will say it again: It’s the defense that’ll win us the league title. The games we don’t concede, 9 times out of ten Chelsea will go on and win. It’s only the games in which we concede cause us problems.
Massive 3 Points in the Title Race:
I couldn’t emphasize more on the fact that 3 points today were massive, and with City and Arsenal playing their games later it was a perfect opportunity for Chelsea to pile on the pressure at the top of the table and that’s exactly what Mourinho’s men have done.
The mantra is simple: We’ve done what we could. Now it’s your turn.
Hazard: The Man Marked:
Teams find it hard to control Hazard’s movement so what do they do? They try to put 2-3 men on him to nullify the threat he poses. There are times the teams stop him but so much is the class in this man that he still creates chances. Today Eden Hazard created 5 chances, and that’s more than any other player on the field today.
Chelsea should be taking maximum advantage of Hazard being man marked as it leaves other players man free. The players playing alongside Hazard need to up their game and take advantage of this, it will only help Hazard and the team as the more they do the more freedom Hazard gets as the players will be forced to leave him and keep a check on his team mates.
Our Shots to Goal ratio is very poor:
Chelsea had 25 shots on goal today and had only 8 on target. It’s a massive worry for us, we need our strikers to fire and need to be more clinical in front of goal.
Chelsea need to see off games early as we surely cannot leave it late every time.
Can we do the unthinkable? Can we do it without the strikers?
Here is a very Interesting Stat: Chelsea goalscorers in the past 30 days (7 matches): Hazard (3), Ivanovic (2), Terry (now given goal vs Everton), Oscar. Zero striker goals.
It’s good that we have got other goal scoring options apart from the strikers but it is really alarming that out strikers are not scoring again. If we really need to win the League we need our strikers to bury chances we get. Chelsea create, creating is no longer an issue but converting those half chances is. Chelsea today had 25 shots on goal and only 8 were on target and this is a massive worry for us.
Glad we got the result from the game that looked like ending goalless, priceless 3 points in the race for the title and Chelsea stay top atleast till the end of February.
Another fun fact: Jose Mourinho has never lost the title race when his team has been top at the end of February. Good Omen? We’ll see.
Jose at Stamford Bridge: 74 games, (Won 58, Drew 16, Lost 0).