A frustrating defeat for Chelsea as the Blues failed to do much of anything against Manchester City. The most concerning aspect of the game was not the goal Man City scored, as a deflection could happen in any game against any opponent. The problem was not even the game plan, as the Blues could have held Man City to a draw. The main issue was the lack of avenues in transition and creativity in the attack. The home side could not create any chances.
Thomas Tuchel opted to set up a team that bypassed the midfield entirely and focuses on long balls, counter attacks and runs from the wingbacks. However, none of these happened for Chelsea. Even with a goal conceded and overwhelming pressure, the defense was the best aspect of the Blues’ game. All of that said, some players were poor and other were decent, but make no mistake, no one was great.
Here are the player ratings in the home loss to Man City:
Edouard Mendy (Goalkeeper): 7/10
Edouard Mendy was the only reason Chelsea did not go behind by three goals early in the second half. Although he conceded a goal, it was hardly his fault as it was a deflection, leaving him with no option but watch the ball pass him. However, Mendy was outstanding in every other aspect of his game. From dangerous corners to that one-on-one with Jack Grealish, the Chelsea keeper did everything in his power to keep the Blues in the game.
Cesar Azpilicueta (Right centerback): 7.5/10
Considering the Chelsea skipper played in two different positions and hardly put a foot wrong, that makes him the best performer of the match. Cesar Azpilicueta played very well in both spots by keeping the back line organized and compact. The captain also supported the attack in the only way he knows how, crossing into the box. However, he could have done better with the timing of some of those crosses, which is why he does not get a higher score.
Andreas Christensen (Centerback): 6/10
This was a very solid performance from Andreas Christensen, all things considered. Since Tuchel’s plan was clear—to defend at all cost and hope for a goal—Christensen did well under pressure. He particularly excelled at intercepting the long balls from Man City and cutting out its passes. However, it is worth noting the Citizens’ attack got past the defender a couple of times, which led to dangerous opportunities. Therefore, his performance was not great, but it was not awful either.
Antonio Rudiger (Left centerback): 7/10
A very solid performance from Antonio Rudiger, despite the result. The German international not only managed to keep Man City away from the box many times, but he was also organized and did not fail to keep track of his opponents. He was very good at reading Man City’s play and he intercepted some key passes to keep some of the opponent’s players quiet.
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