Chelsea 2-0 Aston Villa: Third Gear Chelsea pick up important three points.
Chelsea beat Aston Villa 2-0 to lift the gloom around Stamford Bridge with Diego Costa scoring on...
Chelsea beat Aston Villa 2-0 to lift the gloom around Stamford Bridge with Diego Costa scoring one and having a hand in the second. It was an important win despite Chelsea being stuck in third gear!
Could we have played better? Yes. Did we seem like we were stuck in third gear? Yes. Was it an all important win heading to Ukraine on Tuesday night? Yes. Could it be a turning point in our season? Let's hope so!
After weeks of Blues fans calling for Branislav Ivanovic to be replaced in the side by Azpilicueta to come over on the right to allow Baba Rahman to play as our left back, Jose Mourinho obliged due to the injury to the Serbian defender. However, Rahman looked nervous and as though the occasion got to him for the most part. Whether it was missed tackles stray passes, Rahman needs time to settle down into the side and it wasn't his best display.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek was given a start in the number ten role and you have to wonder why didn't he swap with Cesc Fabregas? When he was on the ball though, he used it well and it was encouraging to see him try and link up with Diego Costa on a couple of occasions. RLC was replaced at half-time by Nemanja Matic.
Kurt Zouma came in and was given the job of dealing with Rudy Gestede and did well. Playing with JT next to him, talking him through the game seemed to calm him down and he played a composed game with no mistakes which was nice to see. Gestede hardly had a look in all afternoon which tells you just how well Zouma had done today.
Cesc Fabregas had a game of two halves if we are honest and I am sure given time to make a self-assessment, he would agree. In the first half he gave the ball away and it looked as though he had slotted back into the disappointing form he had shown since the beginning of the season.
With his performances last term and the impact he made upon his return to the Premier League, the fans that follow Chelsea week in, week out spending their hard earned monies on expensive ticket sites expect plenty more from him!
However, the second half was much, much better and Fabregas was able to influence the game higher up the pitch with the arrival of Matic playing next to Ramires behind him. It comes as no coincidence that with Fabregas moving into the number ten role, he popped up with an assist for our second goal which was a slice of luck that had looked to have deserted us so far this term.
Pedro was given the start on our left hand side with Eden Hazard left on the bench and it was not a game to remember for the Spaniard. We all keep seeing and reading these stories that he has regretted his move to West London (which I think is crap by the way) and today's performance wouldn't have helped him if he has.
We are so used to seeing Pedro become such an attacking threat at Barcelona with fast pace and great movement but it's almost like today at times he was stagnant and really struggled to get involved. We need a really good performance from him soon to get him back on track!
Overall looking back on the game we did well and it was nice to keep a clean sheet and pick up three points. Diego Costa gave everything out there today up against two well-versed Premier League defenders in Micah Richards and Joleon Lescott. He was always looking to mix it up with them for headers, trying to hold them off and hold the ball up, taking them on at every opportunity and was my man of the match.
It was also nice to seem him back on the score sheet after more fantastic work in pressing the ball high to win the ball thirty yards from goal, to then lay the ball square for Costa to tap the ball home passed the Goalkeeper to make it 1-0.
Our second goal came from great movement off the ball from Costa and a lovely ball over the top from Fabregas to find him. Costa uses his chest to control the ball to then turn in the box, wide left of the goal around eight yards from the byline. As he holds the ball up and looks for an option to square the ball to, he sees no-one so almost looks as though he was playing for a corner to deflect the ball off of the two defenders in front of him however, the deflection takes the ball into the near corner of the net giving Brad Guzan in goal no chance making it 2-0.
We had some dodgy moments ourselves in the first half where Villa could have capitalised and fortunately for us, they never did. Against a better side, we could have been punished.
Three points was all important and to ask any of us before the game we would have bitten your hand off for them despite the performance. In a way, that's exactly what we have gotten today and sees us move up with eleven points.
It's a busy month ahead for Chelsea but the victory gives us a start and a base to build on. Hopefully, it will give us some much needed confidence as the games come thick and fast in three different competitions.
Lets hope we can build on this performance but at to at least take our game up another gear!