An incredible five goal thriller which included a missed penalty, a red card and a debut to remember for Pedro led to Chelsea's first win of their campaign.
This game had it all but this is a huge win for Chelsea as they finally win at the third time of asking. The exciting introduction of Pedro brought a fresh attacking option into the side which also saw Diego Costa return to somewhere his menacing best.
On the flip side, John Terry being sent off and facing a 3 game ban is not ideal as his terrible start to the season continues. Also, Bratislava Ivanovic was also caught out a few times by Callum McManaman as well as Nemanja Matic looking sluggish as he gave away the penalty which luckily was saved by Courtois. But what have we learned from this game?
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Let's start with the Man of the Match; Pedro had only just signed a few day before and he was thrown into the first time for this vital game and many were unsure of his capabilities. It only took a 10 minute spell for him send the footballing world, the West Brom defence and Manchester United fans into shock as he scored and assisted to put Chelsea 2-0 up.
Of course, United fans thought they were in pole position to sign the Spanish winger but Pedro changed his mind after careful consideration. Therefore this performance would have hurt them just a little bit as they saw what they could have had.
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His goal was very neat as he picked up the ball and drove at the West Brom defence and as they backed off he played a cute one-two with Eden Hazard and he was helped by a small deflection of Jonas Ollson which guided the ball into the corner. Next, after a swift counter attack, he picked up the ball on the edge of the box and as Chelsea bodies flew forward he drove a cross and Diego Costa arrived to guide it in.
The main thing is it showed Pedro's experience and his calmness showed as he weighed up his options and timed it to perfection. Another piece of play which was noticeable was when Chelsea won the ball back and his touch was heavy but as a defender approached and slid in, he chipped the ball over him and then neatly turned and thought about the shot but then laid it into Willian's path for a shot which he somehow placed wide. But again, he showed that his main skills are pace, skill, decision making and team work. If he continues to play like that he will be an absolute bargain at £21 million.
Now, if you told a Chelsea fan in May that John Terry would have been sent off against West Brom and taken off at half time against Man City, they would have laughed you out of the room. But, here we are three games in and Terry is staring at a three game ban for pulling back Salomon Rondon as he chased a through ball from Chris Brunt.
Evidently, he hasn't started the season as the best centre back in the country as he was last season. Of course, you don't become a bad defender overnight, or in three games. However, something needs to change; maybe this suspension could be the break he needed as Mourinho would have kept playing his captain even through his poor form if he wasn't sent off.
Furthermore, you can throw Ivanovic, Matic and Cesc Fabregas into the pile of players in poor form; very much different from last season. Ivanovic has been widely criticised by pundits for being given the run around by Sterling, Montero and most recently, McManaman.
Surely his place would be under threat but with being the newly elected vice captain, it's likely he'll carry on playing. However, an interesting fact is that all seven goals Chelsea have conceded have come from that right hand side - which is Ivanovic's area. With Baba Rahman recently arriving at the Bridge surely Azplicueta should be looking to take over that right back role.
Also, a stat that links Ivanovic and Fabregas together is that they have both been dribbled past the most in the league - eight times each. Fabregas has become very ineffective as he gave the ball away most of the time at the weekend and only showed very rare glimpses of his passing range that we all know me has.
Nemanja Matic is Chelsea's answer to a brick wall when he's on top form and has struggled to be as influential in the middle of the park so far this season. He dived in uncharacteristically to concede a Penalty against West Brom in the previous game. The main omen is that it can only get better for these proven players and proven champions.
I believe that's the perfect game for Chelsea to kickstart their season. Mainly because it had everything, it had them slowly growing into the game to dominating for a period of time and playing fresh attacking football and then it had them back to the walls, giving absolutely everything to get the three points.
Mentally, it will be a weight off the players' minds to get that first win and they will be looking to push on and get a run going. The confidence will be back for their next game and they need to use that to kick on and ignite their title defence.
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