Chelsea went into their mid-week Champions League fixture against Lille OSC, having finally ended their wait for a win in the competition. Post the 7-1 thrashing of Grimsby Town in the EFL Cup, the Blues earned their first win at the Bridge at the weekend against Brighton. Their 2-0 win also gave Frank Lampard’s side their first clean-sheet of the season.
Although there have been a lot of positives for the Chelsea fans to cherish upon since the appointment of Lampard, the main factor was that the performances needed to be converted into results. The Blues had been impressive going forward but sadly, their defensive form had been an increasing worry for their gaffer.
Although Lampard has said Christensen’s injury isn’t a long term one, the Dane missed the game. Kurt Zouma started and Emerson was replaced by Marcos Alonso. Youngsters Reece James and Callum Hudson-Odoi (who had a place on the bench), played part in this match after being on the bench during the weekend.
Chelsea: Arrizabalaga; Azpilicueta, Zouma, Tomori; Alonso, Jorginho, Kante, James; Mount, Willian; Abraham
Three Major Problems For Chelsea-
3. No Clean-Sheet for Chelsea
Though the win was a well-deserved one, the Blues could not hold on and keep a clean-sheet. They conceded in the first half, which made the job that much tough for them. They have already let in a lot of goals in the top flight of English football as well, which has been a problem this season.
The Londoners will be hoping that they can improve on that and keep more clean-sheets in the long run. They have a tough season ahead of them and some of their first-choice defenders are out injured. With that being said, once the likes of Rudiger and Emerson are back, things could be much better for Lampard and co.
Though Willian did score in this match, the other goal came from Tammy Abraham once again. It seems that most of Lampard’s goals are coming from the young striker and some of the other attackers and midfielders need to step up and contribute. If that isn’t the case, Chelsea’s situation could be similar to Arsenal, who are over-dependent on Aubameyang to provide the goals.
On the other hand, Michy Batshuayi and Olivier Giroud were unused subs and did not play a part in this match. This will be a worry for the two attackers, who would want some game time under their belt as well. Also, if Abraham gets injured, Lampard will not have strikers whom he can rely on, as both these players have barely played under him.
Though the visitors conceded just a single goal in the game, Alonso was far from convincing. He made a late error. This could have cost his team a couple of points. He doesn’t look comfortable defending. The defender is only good when he pushes forward and joins the attacks. Due to this, the west London side misses Emerson a lot. They will be hoping that he comes back from injury soon.