Chelsea 3-0 Leicester City – The five most pleasing aspects of our victory over the Champions.
Chelsea beat Leicester City at Stamford Bridge on Saturday lunchtime with a dominant, impressive performance. Here are the five most plea...
Chelsea beat Leicester City at Stamford Bridge on Saturday lunchtime with a dominant, impressive performance. Here are the five most pleasing aspects of the game for Chelsea.
Without question, Chelsea were impressive in this game. We dominated the game overall but for a 10-15 minute period in the second half. As the players come to terms with the new tactical formation, they are looking more confident despite the majority of the players spending the last ten days away with their international teams.
We looked organised, we looked to have a much better balance throughout the team and the players looked comfortable with what is being asked of them.
Our defensive shape is something that all of us are interested to see. With news that John Terry was passed fit for the game, I expected to see him start through the middle of the back three, a position that David Luiz had adopted against Hull in our last game.
To everyone’s surprise, Antonio Conte stuck with the same back three as in that game with Cesar Azpilicueta on the right, Luiz through the middle and Gary Cahill on the left hand side.
I liked the way we played this one. Without the ball, the players took their defensive positions and the gaps exposed infront of our defence in games such as Liverpool and Arsenal was no longer available. Leicester became frustrated and could not build any substantial pressure as a result.
Two of the most impressive Chelsea performers on the day were Marcus Alonso and Victor Moses. Both of them were heavily involved the game with Moses scoring our third and final goal.
At numerous times during the game, both managed to find themselves pick up possession of the ball in space and in attacking areas.
Chelsea has struggled of late to find the right balance in the full back positions. The decision to switch Cesar Azpilicueta inside to allow Victor Moses to operate down that right hand side has been a good one so far. Marcus Alonso has played just as well down the left.
If the 3-4-3 formation is going to work, the wingbacks are vitally important and it has been a promising start so far.
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What more is there to say about Diego Costa than has been said in recent weeks. He seems to have picked up this season from where he finished last year by scoring goals. It’s his movement off of the ball, his willingness to make runs of the ball to move defenders about so others that can benefit and the fact that he seems to stick to his position through the middle that has made a marked difference compared to twelve months ago.
Plenty of people are commenting on his apparent row with Antonio Conte. It became clear that he wanted to be substituted to ensure that he would not pick up his fifth booking, which would mean that he would miss Jose Mourinho’s return to Stamford Bridge with Manchester United next weekend. I personally see no issue with that at all. Chelsea was leading two nil at the time and it did not look like Leicester were creating problems for us to endanger the three points.
I look at that in a positive light as it’s clear how much it means to Costa to play next week. OK, for a couple of minutes he cut a frustrated figure on the pitch gesticulating to the bench but it was over as quickly as it started.
N’Golo Kane deserved to win the man of the match award yesterday for his performance and, his first against Leicester after leaving them this summer.
What I liked about his performance was that it was similar to the performances we admired from a distance last season. He sat deep and gave protection the back three. He looked to break up any possession the opposition had in attacking areas and once he had done that, gave the ball to someone with a simple pass.
That’s all I would want from Kante as that is why Chelsea paid £30m+ for him in the first place. Against Liverpool and Arsenal he looked out of sorts, he looked as though he couldn’t come to grips with the formation or his role and we lost both games in the first half.
In the past two weeks, N’Golo Kante is back to his best and it’s clear that the new 3-4-3 formation suits him.
This was a really pleasing performance and a really good three points for Chelsea and Antonio Conte. With other results going our way, Chelsea have moved up to fifth place and just three points behind the league leaders.
The big test of our new formation will be next weekend as Jose Mourinho hits town with the likes of Ibrahimovic and Pogba Will Jose come to Stamford Bridge looking to "park the bus" and frustrate Chelsea? You can bet you life he will as he is determined not to lose points away from home.
Chelsea have a free week to prepare whilst United play twice against Liverpool tomorrow night and Fenerbache in the Europa League on Thursday. Expect pre-match excuses from the Special One!
So far so good for our 3-4-3 formation!