It was a Premier League weekend as our glorified pre-season game (at least as far as Chelsea were concerned) against Liverpool at Stamford Bridge ended in a 1-1 draw.
Liverpool had everything to play for as they were still in the hunt for a spot in the Champions League next season. The Reds failed to secure 3 points and crashed out of CL contention in what would be Steven Gerrard’s last season at Anfield.
As far as Chelsea were concerned, with the title now in the bag, everyone expected us to be slightly less motivated in this fixture. At least the Scousers hoped so. But alas, they were wrong! Mourinho made five changes to his usual starting line-up with Luis, Mikel, Zouma, Remy and the academy star Ruben Loftus-Cheek all getting starts. The so-called ‘weakened’ Chelsea side still managed a point against the Merseyside club.
Let us take a look at the player ratings and analyze who impressed the most at the Bridge yesterday:
THIBAUT COURTOIS – 7/10
Petr Cech was set to start this game before he was sidelined due to a neck injury. Thibaut Courtois had a very good game, made a couple of nice saves and was excellent overall in dealing with crosses and shots. Although, there wasn’t much he could have done to prevent that goal from Gerrard!
BRANISLAV IVANOVIC – 6/10
The Serbian struggled to contain the likes of Adam Lallana as the Englishman gave him a run for his money, especially in the second half when he linked pretty well with Coutinho to cause the Chelsea defense one or two problems.
KURT ZOUMA – 6/10
Kurt Zouma started the game ahead of Cahill but suffered a knock on his knee in the early stages of the game and never looked his usual self at the back. Consequently, he had to be substituted at the half hour mark.
JOHN TERRY – 8.5/10
The Captain, Leader, Legend was at his usual best as he organized the defensive line to perfection and opened the scoring from a Fabregas corner by making a fool of Rickie Lambert in the penalty box.
FILIPE LUIS – 6.5/10
He was very good in attack but struggled in defense. That has pretty much been the story of Filipe Luis this season. His long pass to Willian in the first half was a thing of beauty, but he struggled against the pace of Sterling at the back.
JOHN OBI MIKEL – 7/10
Not quite Matic, but still very close. John Obi Mikel had a good game as he did well on the defensive front alongside Loftus-Cheek. Once Matic was introduced at the hour mark, Mikel looked even better in the middle of the pitch.
RUBEN LOFTUS-CHEEK – 7/10
Finally a full debut for the youngster! Although, it would be unfair to judge him based on just one start, the kid has surely got the potential to be a good player in the future! His tackling, pass interception, and pressing was very impressive, although he still needs to work a lot on his positioning. But that is expected from an 18-year-old, isn’t it?
EDEN HAZARD – 6/10
One of his worst performances this season as he gave the ball away on multiple occasions. Although, he is one of the main reasons we are where we are today so, can’t complain!
CESC FABREGAS – 7.5/10
Seems like Fabregas is in a hurry to break Henry’s assist record!
The Spaniard looked too eager early on and received a booking at the early stage of the game but overall, he had a good game up front as he linked well with Willian and Remy!
WILLIAN – 8/10
Another solid performance from the Brazilian, who has stepped up big time in the last few months. His pressing was immaculate, and he also managed a couple of very good passes in the penalty box. Overall, very good stuff from the Afro-haired winger!
LOIC REMY – 7/10
Coming back from injury, it was the first start for the Frenchman in a long time. He didn’t manage to get on the scoresheet, but his link up play with other attacking midfielders and general movement in the box was impressive.
GARY CAHILL – 7/10
Cahill replaced the injured Zouma before half-time and had a good game good alongside Terry at the center of our defense.
NEMANJA MATIC – 8/10
Came on at the hour mark to replace Loftus-Cheek and completely shut down the Liverpool attack with Mikel in the midfield.
JUAN CUADRADO – N.A
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Edited By: Vikram Vadiganeni