The curse of November still looms over Chelsea as the Blues had another bad day at the office. Chelsea will have to wait to book their place in the knockout stages of the Champions League after being forced to settle for a 1-1 draw at Maribor.
A lethargic and poor performance as nothing went according to the script. Jose Mourinho made four changes resting Courtois, Cahill, Oscar and Costa. Cech, Zouma, Andre Schurrle and Drogba replaced them. Below we will analyse Chelsea Goals vs NK Maribor.
The first 10 minutes belonged to the visitors as Chelsea pressed Maribor left, right and center, who looked in the mood to show no mercy. The Blues should have taken the lead as Kurt Zouma planted his header a foot wide from a Fabregas cross; the home side held a strong defensive line. Maribor missed out on a few chances themselves as Luka Zahoviv’s shot was cleared off the line by Zouma. Chelsea as expected kept most of the possession as their midfielders were a step quicker than their opponents but with the advantage of their superior class should have taken the lead. A goalless first half saw a disappointed Mourinho storm into the dressing room.
As expected Schurrle and Willian made way for Diego Costa and Oscar since The Blues lacked the finishing touches in the first half. Chelsea fell behind within five minutes of the restart as Ibrahimi gave Maribor the lead. Trailing to Maribor made Jose Mourinho rethink his strategy as Ramires was brought on for Luis, Chelsea kept banging on the door, and on 73 minutes, they drew level. Poor refereeing decisions made the Blues struggle for their winning goal as Fabregas was wrongfully termed offside, and Oscar’s trip in the box was ignored. Jasmin Handanovic made superbly saves to frustrate Hazard and Costa since the home side found it difficult to adjust to Chelsea’s pace. In the final minutes, Hazard was fouled by Mitja Viler to win a penalty, but the Belgian’s weak effort was saved as Chelsea settled for a point.
Agim Ibraimi 50′
Viler made room down the left and looped a cross into the box. Zouma’s header clear was weak, which found Ibraimi on the right-hand edge of the box. Ibraimi took a touch, and curled a peach up over Cech and back down into the top-left corner
Nemanja Matic 73′
A cross from the corner towards Terry on the penalty spot who headed it down towards the bottom left, although goal bound, but Matic was at the back post and applied the finishing touch.
A much-deserved draw for Maribor, who were thoroughly outplayed two weeks ago at Stamford Bridge, and were expected to be swatted aside. Jose Mourinho’s men are still undefeated this season, but oppositions have started to find loopholes although poor refereeing decisions did cost Chelsea 3 points, but there are no excuses for the chances missed out on. The Blues travel to Anfield on Saturday and Mourinho would hope his team forgets this Champions League game and brings out the form and quality they started the season with.