Antonio Conte’s side finished up comfortable winners over the Toffees.
Cesc Fabregas and Alvaro Morata both scored first half goals to help the Stamford Bridge side to a 2-0 win at Stamford Bridge.
Everton were poor, but Chelsea didn’t allow them a single shot on target throughout the match.
And there were solid performances across the board to help the home side exorcise the demons from the opening day Premier League defeat to Burnley.
But which players particularly impressed during the match?
A comfortable, controlled, composed win for Chelsea to send us into the international break feeling good with six points from the first three games and the shambolic first 45 minutes of the league season firmly in the rear-view.
It may not have been the 5-0 of last season, but Everton leave with just one shot on target and most importantly not a single point. The final scoreline may even flatter a bit, with Chelsea wasteful as ever in the second half.
Chelsea: Courtois (6), Azpilicueta (7), David Luiz (7), Rudiger (6), Moses (6), Fabregas (8), Kante (6), Alonso (7), Willian (8), Morata (8), Pedro (7)
Subs: Bakayoko (6), Batshuayi (6), Christensen (n/a)
Everton: Pickford (6), Baines (7), Keane (5), Williams (5), Jagielka (5), Holgate (6), Davies (6), Sigurdsson (6), Gueye (6), Rooney (6), Ramirez (6).
Subs: Besic (7), Calvert-Lewin (6), Lennon (n/a)
Man of the match: Willian
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On a bright, sunny day at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea put their 3-2 home defeat to Burnley on the opening weekend behind them to beat Everton 2-0 in comprehensive fashion.
It was the same fixture that saw the visitors fall to a 5-0 defeat last season as Antonio Conte’s side showed what they were capable of in their then novel 3-4-2-1 shape.
Ronald Koeman took the decision to try and match the Blues man-for-man with his own back three system, which has become the Dutchman’s default in the Premier League so far this campaign, seeing the Toffees to victory over Stoke City and to a 1-1 draw away to Manchester City.
This time, his three-man defensive line conceded only two goals instead of five, although the hosts were missing Eden Hazard, who scored twice on their last meeting at Stamford Bridge. Instead, Alvaro Morata and Cesc Fabregas were the players to make the difference.
No one wants to debate the merits of La Liga and the Premier League for the umpteenth time, especially given how profitable Diego Costa found the rough-and-tumble life of the English game after leaving Atletico Madrid but Alvaro Morata is still a striker leading the line as if he can rise above the ruckus going on around him.
He has so far enjoyed a rather charmed life as a footballer – a super sub at Real Madrid and a support striker for Juventus, two of the most dominant clubs in the world within their respective leagues. Regardless of the immense amount of success they have enjoyed in recent years, Chelsea do not possess the same sort of hold over England’s top tier.
They have always been at their best when meshing together the pugnacious persistence that is part and parcel of being an underdog, along with a cosmopolitan appreciation for the finer things in football – technique, skill, guile and big money signing from the continent.
Morata is the latter personified. He doesn’t play with an arrogance about him but he does stand off his markers as if he expects to be able to overwhelm them through his ability and intelligence, rather than battling through or using his physique. That can work a treat when he can expose a skill gap of sorts.
Against Everton, he set up Fabregas to score the opener and then headed home Chelsea’s second and turned the game when he came on to try and salvage the 3-2 loss versus Burnley. When he can show he is a cut above the rest, he will deliver for the Blues – but it is a shift in tone to approach of Costa.
Unlike his predecessor, Morata is a front man who prefers to holds off opponents instead of getting up close and personal. That’s no bad thing, merely something different.
Andreas Christensen’s impressive turn against Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley saw renewed calls for Conte to bring the Dane into the fold on a more regular basis to play alongside David Luiz in Chelsea’s back three. However, Antonio Rudiger’s performance on the left-side of the defence showed why he is the first-choice option to come into the team to plug gaps as they appear at the back.
The Germany international is capable of playing as the stopper on the left or the right side of the back line, or even as a more defensively-minded wing-back, but it was Gary Cahill’s berth that he stepped into to face the Toffees, and he got on with the job with no fuss or trouble.
Cesar Azpilicueta, leading his team out as captain for the first time at Stamford Bridge, took up his usual position. David Luiz picked up where he left off in the middle. Christensen is another centre-back that likes to put his foot on the ball and dictate play from deep. He is effectively cover for the Brazilian, not a back up to the more rugged Cahill, which is where Rudiger comes in.
He has more to his game than merely being quick and strong, but compared to the Dane he is a more austere option at the back, and with Luiz charged elaborating in possession while Azpilicueta ferries the ball forward, he is the best option to be the no nonsense enforcer. As Christensen showed against Spurs, he is a more than capable deputy for Luiz, which is no mean feat, but Chelsea do not need two ball-playing sweepers to over-complicate their defensive efforts at the back.
As Christensen showed against Spurs, he is a more than capable deputy for Luiz, which is no mean feat, but Chelsea do not need two ball-playing sweepers to over-complicate their defensive efforts at the back. When Conte sent him on at the end in place of Victor Moses, it was to allow Azpilicueta to move out wide. Unless he is replacing the Spaniard or Luiz, he may struggle to get games.