Blues fail to take their chances as they leave the London Stadium empty handed.
Written by Ryan Bellenie (@BellenieSport).
Chelsea began the new month by picking up three valuable points on Wednesday night against Watford. Their next assignment was a trip to East London in Saturday’s lunchtime kick-off, as West Ham welcomed the Blues to the London Stadium.
The Hammers entered the fixture having lost twice to the Blues last season. The Irons were also winless in their previous three Premier League encounters, which isn’t the form you’d like to be in when playing the league leaders.
However, David Moyes’ side also perhaps reminded themselves that they beat Chelsea 3-2 at the end of the 2018/2019 campaign. It looked to be a close encounter regardless of the circumstances with both sides up for the occasion.
There was a brisk start to the game with both Jarrod Bowen and Tomáš Souček firing wide in the opening 10 minutes.
Chelsea also had a go in the early stages with the in-form Reece James testing Łukasz Fabiański, who denied the defender through a comfortable save.
In fact, it was the Blues who had the brighter start. Thomas Tuchel’s side were dominant in possession as they dictated play through tight, intricate passes.
On the 20th minute, there was a chance for the hosts as the ball was scuffled around the penalty area with Craig Dawson striking towards goal. The defender’s effort was weak, with Édouard Mendy making the stop.
There were later efforts at either end from Michail Antonio and Kai Havertz, but it was Thiago Silva who found the opener on the 28th minute.
Although Chelsea had just took the lead, they came close to losing it just a minute later. Vladimír Coufal’s effort had Mendy beaten, but Thiago Silva was there behind him to keep his side’s lead intact.
Despite Silva’s heroic efforts, there was nothing he could do on the 38th minute as a horrific backpass from Jorginho left Mendy in bother. The Senegalese goalkeeper was hounded by Bowen, before bringing the winger down with a penalty conceded consequently.
Lanzini dispatched his spot-kick with the game now one-a-piece.
In what was a first half of drama, the action didn’t stop there. On the brink of half-time a brilliant diagonal pass from Hakim Ziyech picked out Mason Mount, who beat Fabiański with a excellent in-step volley.
Chelsea now went into the break with their lead once more. The Blues would fancy their chances going into the second half, having gone unbeaten in their previous 48 league fixtures when leading at half-time.
There was a change at half-time, as the injured Kai Havertz was replaced by Romelu Lukaku.
The second half originally began at a slower pace, before West Ham suddenly struck level on the 56th minute. Jarrod Bowen’s effort stemmed almost out of nothing, as the 24-year-old had Mendy beaten with a powerful strike from the edge of the area.
Once again, the Hammers had responded to Chelsea as they found a second equaliser.
The Blues tried to reinstate their lead as they pushed forward, but the closest they came was through a snapshot in the area from Mason Mount.
The Irons came close to a third goal of their own on the 74th minute, with a stretching Jarrod Bowen narrowly missing out from close range.
Despite there being chances at both ends, the all-important fifth goal in the game came as substitute Arthur Masuaku found the net with what could have been confused with a miss-hit cross.
Mendy got hands to the ball, but not enough to keep it out of the net.
The electric Jarrod Bowen came close to making it 4-2 just two minutes later but failed to wrap it up for West Ham. The final whistle eventually blew, with Thomas Tuchel and his side gutted to leave the London Stadium with nothing to show for their efforts.
After the whistle:
The Blues were fortunate to pick up maximum points against Watford on midweek, but were punished for not taking their chances against a motivated West Ham team.
Truthfully, there could have been plenty more goals in the game with the scoreline falling either way. However, the Hammers did brilliantly to respond on two separate occasions before punishing the Blues with a final blow.
Although questions will be asked about Édouard Mendy, multiple individual efforts let Chelsea down in the game. The Blues are now knocked off top spot too, with Liverpool grabbing a last-minute winner against Wolves.
Looking to regain confidence, Tuchel will hope for a win in Russia on Wednesday to cement Chelsea’s place as top of Group H in the Champions League.
West Ham are also in action in the week as they face Dinamo Zagreb on Thursday.
West Ham United 3-2 Chelsea.
- Silva (28’).
- Lanzini (40’ pen).
- Mount (44’).
- Bowen (56’).
- Masuaku (87’).
BBC Sports Player of the match:
Jarrod Bowen (West Ham United).
West Ham United (3-4-2-1): Fabiański; Dawson, Zouma (71’), Diop; Coufal, Souček, Rice ©, Johnson (45+2’); Bowen, Lanzini (85’); Antonio.
- Subs: Masuaku (45+2’), Fornals (71’), Benrahma (85’).
Chelsea (3-4-2-1): Mendy; Christensen, Silva, Rüdiger; James, Loftus-Cheek, Jorginho ©, Alonso (72’); Ziyech (64’), Mount; Havertz (45’).
- Subs: Lukaku (45’), Hudson-Odoi (64’), Pulisic (72’).
West Ham United (36%) vs Chelsea (64%).
West Ham United (11) vs Chelsea (19).
Shots on target:
West Ham United (5) vs Chelsea (7).
West Ham United (1) vs Chelsea (9).
West Ham United (10) vs Chelsea (9).
- (credit | BBC Sport).
- (credit | Sky Sports Football).