It was a dull Saturday evening at Stamford Bridge as the home team took on West London rivals QPR, in a gloomy lit Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea edged through the game with a narrow 2-1 win, courtesy Eden Hazard’s brilliantly executed penalty, following a moment of trickery in the box. Mourinho felt that the team wasn’t consistent enough throughout the game and it would be better next time if Chelsea would play with more intensity next time.
It took a special goal from Oscar and an Eden Hazard penalty for Premier League leaders to claim three points. Nevertheless, it was a well-deserved victory for the Blues and here are the player ratings:
Thibaut Courtois: Rating – 6/10
He didn’t have much to do in this game. QPR were sitting deep in their own half and Chelsea midfield was pretty quick in winning back possession. However, a quality back-heel flick by Charlie Austin kept the clean sheet at bay for the Chelsea goalkeeper.
Courtois has been unlucky this season as Chelsea seem to concede soft goals almost every next match. It’s high time Mourinho gets the clean sheet consistency back, in an otherwise perfect team.
Branislav Ivanovic: Rating – 6/10
Ivanovic had a decent game overall. He was doing his job at a regular pace, but the lack of attacking approach by QPR, left Ivanovic to do a little more of his marauding.
His presence was felt in the initial moments up front, which faded as the match progressed. Was unfortunate enough to miss on a near post chance in the early minutes of the game. In an otherwise solid performance, Ivanovic still missed out on a clean sheet.
Gary Cahill: Rating – 6/10
Gary Cahill had a regular performance. Chelsea’s back line had little to do for most parts of the match. But when there were threats, Cahill and others were there to negate it.
The tempo of the game was pretty slow and Chelsea were caught on a counter attack within minutes of Bobby Zamora’s introduction. A goal conceded yet again late in the second half, meaning Chelsea defenders would have to be more focused in the final minutes and should find a way to handle the ultimate stoppage time pressure currently building up in the league.
John Terry: Rating – 6/10
Another decent performance from the Captain. His leadership was never in question and he had a clean and regular match. He was strong in the air and assured when coming out of the back four.
QPR fans were vociferous and consistently managed to boo John Terry and mock Mourinho in their chants. Much was said about the silence of the Chelsea fans at Stamford Bridge.
Filipe Luis: Rating – 8/10
Played with intent and was aggressive in his tackling. He fit perfectly in the high pressing game and had great combination plays with Hazard. Luis offers a great support down the left flank to get the best out of the Belgian. Stats of last game said pass combination of Luis passing to Hazard was the highest. A great game for the Brazilian.
Nemanja Matic: Rating – 8/10
An extremely efficient ball winner, Matic marshaled the midfield in order to win possession back within seconds. Most of Chelsea’s consistency was there in winning possession as and when required.
Matic was at the heart of it. Now, there isn’t a better midfielder ahead of the back four in the Premier League. His partnership with Cesc Fabregas has been strong and he has been rock solid for Chelsea in their unbeaten campaign so far.
Cesc Fabregas: Rating – 8/10
Cesc Fabregas yet again caught our eye with a brilliant assist for an exquisite goal by Oscar. He was at the thick of all things good as Chelsea were losing their consistency time and again. His quality passes were a reason Chelsea managed to be a threat throughout despite their sloppiness.
Fabregas is doing his job of unlocking tight defences with clever passing and moments of flair and understanding of the game. But Chelsea would want to kill the game off earlier instead of enduring these moments of frustration.
Oscar: Rating – 8.5/10
Another brilliant game for the Brazilian. Ever since Fabregas’ arrival, Oscar has started to have more offensive influence instead of just being a workhorse in the game. Oscar was always an attacking player, but last season’s business end saw Mourinho converting the team into a hardworking defensive unit, resulting in Oscar missing in the offensive areas.
This season he has shown remarked improvement in balancing his game between offensive and defensive duties. He is grabbing goals and assists this season and the goal he scored with the outside of his foot was a world class spectacle.
Willian: Rating – 6.5/10
Willian was not decisive enough in the final third. He worked very hard throughout the game and was an important part of Chelsea’s juggernaut midfield engine that won possession back at will. He lacked the final ball at times and his runs and passes lacked enough ambition.
Nonetheless, Willian has been instructed by Jose Mourinho to be more aggressive and ambitious in the game. It is mostly a transition phase for the Brazilian who is still learning to get used to Mourinho’s offensive demands.
Eden Hazard: 8.5/10 (MOTM)
Eden Hazard was named the Man Of The Match. He was brilliant with his runs and was sharp in his movement when he won the penalty for the Blues’. Hazard’s proficiency in attempting penalties has been well known as he scores without looking at the ball.
He is growing to be more and more decisive and is enjoying his time with an in-form Oscar and Cesc Fabregas.
Diego Costa: Rating – 7/10
He marked his return to action with a decent performance. He wasn’t given any sort of space by the QPR defenders, but he was a handful for them with his movement and goal threat.
Costa offered a lot of physicality and aggression in the final third. He also drifted deeper to get the ball and showed his passing skills as well by switching the play once. Overall, despite not being on the scoresheet, this was valuable playing time for a player who has missed over three weeks of action.
Didier Drogba: Rating – 8/10
He came on as a substitute for Willian and had an immense impact. He is fully fit now and ready to exhibit his goal threat nature to the oppositions. He won almost all headers when Chelsea passed aerially from defensive areas. His strength and physical presence is apparently a bit more than what Diego Costa usually offers and his style of play was that of a typical target man, as he was always facing the ball with his back to goal.
Andre Schurrle: Rating – 7/10
He had one shot on target that was well saved by Robert Green. He was a lively presence but again, it showed the lack of consistency by Chelsea on the right wing, with both Willian and Schurrle lacking consistency when they are given starts. Schurrle is bound to learn more and is naturally more aggressive than Willian.
Ramires: Rating – N/A
He came on late in the game. This was the first time he played since a month and Mourinho would be happy to have his engine man back.
Edited By: Harshal Ahire