Chelsea F.C. – Match Report vs Leicester City 19/01/2021

Starting Line-up: Mendy; Chilwell, Silva (C), Rudiger, James; Mount, Kovacic, Havertz (Out 67’); Pulisic, Abraham, Hudson-Odoi (67’)

Subs: Kepa, Christensen, Emerson, Zouma, Azpilicueta, Jorginho, Gilmour, Werner (In 67’), Ziyech (In 67’)

First Half

Leicester came into the game with the chance of going top of the league and they showed this in their intent to press high up early on. Surrounding Mount and Kovacic to not allow them to get onto the ball.

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This was leaving a big gap between the defence and the midfield however which allowed Havertz space to get into.

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Leicester quickly changed this and decided to give Ndidi the responsibility of marking Kai Havertz.

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5 minutes in Leicester opened the scoring after the home side cut back a short played corner to the edge of the box where Ndidis left footed attempt hit the inside of the post and ended up in the back of the net.

Chelsea were in a 4-4-2 formation off the ball to try and stop Leicester from playing out to the full backs.

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Leicester were looking to exploit the wide areas by pushing the wingers centrally to drag the full backs out of position to then allow the Leicester full backs space to overlap into.

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Chilwell dragged out of position with Castagne making the overlap.

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This attack almost led to a 2nd Leicester goal after the ball ended up on the edge of the box at the feet of James Maddison whos left foot attempt hit the bar.

Leicester were now in a flat 4-5-1 to try and minimise the space for the Chelsea midfielders to operate in.

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With Hudson-Odoi holding the width on the right Kai Havertz was able to occupy the right half space but was constantley surrounded and had no space to play in.

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Chelsea had a good opportunity to equalise after good link up play between Reece James and Hudson-Odoi on the right-hand side had Reece James in the box, but his attempt was pushed over the bar by the Leicester keeper. Thiago Silvas attempt from the following corner was right at the keeper. On the half hour mark Chelsea came close again after Pulisic set Hudson-Odoi through on goal after good link up play with Havertz but the 20-year-olds shot hit the side netting. A few minutes later Vardy came close to a second Leicester goal but his chipped attempt was unable to lob Mendy whos fingertips stopped the ball going in the net.

37th minute Chelsea thought they had a penalty after Pulisic was fouled by Evans however VAR showed that the foul was outside the box. Mounts following free kick went over the bar. A few minutes later Leicester were able to get a second after Maddisons back post run was unmarked and he was able to convert the cross to make it 2-0.

Second Half

Chelsea came out into the second half with more energy and intent to score however this played right into Leicesters hands as they were now able to use the pace of Vardy on the counterattack. In the 49th minute James Justin should have scored a third after he was unmarked at the back post but was unable to convert the cross. Chelsea were fortunate not to concede a 3rd.

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In the 54th minute Leicester had the ball in the back of the net through Albrighton after good play in the Chelsea box but the goal was disallowed for offside. Chelsea was looking vulnerable on the counter and were running out of time to get back in the game. Chelsea was now pushing men forward but this only made it easier for Leicester to counter. In the 56th minute a long ball was played to Vardy who laid the ball off to Tielmans who was unmarked but his left foot attempt was well stopped by Mendy.

Lampard then introduced Werner and Ziyech but the only impact they had was in the 85th minute when Werner converted Ziyechs cross from a free kick, but the goal was disallowed for offside. Chelsea continued to push but ultimately came up short.

Next Game

Chelsea take on Luton Town in the F.A. Cup. Although it should be an easy game, the main talking point will be whether Lampard will still be the manager for the game.

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