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On the face of things, the 2018/19 season had been a success for Chelsea. A third-place finish to guarantee Champions League football, Carabao Cup finalists on penalties, and victory in the Europa League would normally indicate a good season.

The truth, however, was different. It had been a polarising season for the fans, with chain-smoker Maurizio Sarri’s tactics largely relying on the excellence of Eden Hazard, insipid football, dropped points against beatable opposition, and defeats by the scores of 4-0 and 6-0 away to Bournemouth and Manchester City respectively. This was before you added Kepa Arrizabalaga’s antics in the League Cup Final in which he refused to come off, and then there were the constant allegations of racism spread by an amateur journalist whose veracity was dubious at best, which were gleefully jumped on by those with ulterior motives and a social media account.

Sarri departed for Juventus at the end of the season, taking his cigarettes with him, and Eden Hazard left for Real Madrid to the tune of £87 million. This, combined with the resources of Roman Abramovich, would have provided a decent war chest in normal circumstances, but the club had been banned from signing players by FIFA due to the club breaching numerous rules concerning the signing of academy players. As such, the club now faced the prospect of having to play the players that normally, to the consternation of the fans, went out on loan each season. With the manager’s job vacant, the club promoted from within, appointing coach and former player George Spencer.

 

Born in London in 1980, Spencer grew up while English clubs were banned from Europe following Heysel. Despite living three miles from Stamford Bridge, Spencer was not taken to watch Chelsea until 1989, after the club had been promoted from the Second Division, as an early Christmas present. The Blues were beaten 5-2 by Liverpool, but it didn’t dampen Spencer’s enthusiasm, as he was instantly hooked. He also proved to be just as keen on the pitch as he was in the stands, as he commanded the midfield in his school team year after year. In 1996, his efforts were rewarded, as he signed youth terms with Chelsea on his 16th birthday.

While Spencer was too young to feature in the team, the following season was a new beginning for Chelsea. Whilst he cleaned the senior players’ boots, they saw Chelsea achieve their highest league finish for seven years, finishing sixth in the table in a campaign which saw a 2-1 win at Old Trafford and victory in the FA Cup Final.

The following season saw Spencer get more time in the U18 squad, and occasionally appeared for the U21s, while the senior team won the League Cup - which included a semi-final victory over Arsene Wenger’s eventual double-winning Arsenal side - and the Cup Winners’ Cup. The following season produced even more, as Chelsea, under Gianluca Vialli, pushed Arsenal (who they beat 5-0 at Highbury in the Coca-Cola Cup) and Manchester United to the finish line in a three-horse title race to secure Champions League football for the first time in their history. They would eventually reach the last eight, losing 5-1 to Barcelona in extra time after being seven minutes away from the semi finals. Despite only finishing fifth in the league, the club would win the FA Cup and beat Manchester United 5-0 at Stamford Bridge.

Having impressed at reserve level, Spencer was loaned out to Wimbledon for the 2000/01 season. He quickly established himself as a regular starter and was voted the club’s player of the season by the fans, but the Dons could only finish eighth in Division One. Back at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea scraped into the UEFA Cup, despite not winning away until March.

The 2001/02 season saw Spencer’s Chelsea career begin in earnest. Making his debut in a baptism of fire, the midfielder was thrown in at the deep end by Claudio Ranieri when six first teamers refused to travel to Tel Aviv for a UEFA Cup game citing safety fears. Although Chelsea would lose 2-0, he barely put a foot wrong and was rewarded by being picked for the return leg. He almost made a big impact at 0-0, but he saw his shot, having beaten Hapoel keeper Elimelech, cannon back off the post and be hacked clear of an onrushing Hasselbaink. That was one of the few bright sparks in an otherwise insipid display as Chelsea limped to a 1-1 draw and bowed out of the competition.

Spencer pushed on, however, and became a semi-regular face in the first team under Ranieri. He played in the 3-0 win at Old Trafford and both back-to-back 4-0 wins against Tottenham Hotspur, as well as the FA Cup Final defeat to Arsenal. 2002/03 would see Spencer get more opportunities, and he played in all of Chelsea’s FA Cup matches as well as the 2-1 win over Liverpool on the last day of the season which secured Champions League qualification for the following season.

The so-called “Russian Revolution” following the club’s takeover by billionaire Roman Abramovich brought a plethora of new players into the squad, but Spencer was still a semi-regular presence as Chelsea tried to establish themselves as regular title challengers. The club fell short, as Arsenal went the season unbeaten, although Chelsea would gain some measure of revenge by knocking them out of the Champions League in their own backyard. Spencer’s reward at the end of the season was to be picked for England’s Euro 2004 squad, and he scored against Croatia and in the shootout against Portugal, although the Three Lions were eliminated on penalties.

Ranieri was sacked at the end of the season, with Champions League winner José Mourinho coming in. Mourinho, who dubbed himself “a special one” kept the faith with Spencer, although Frank Lampard and Tiago were often picked ahead of him. He did, however, make 17 appearances from the bench and win a Premier League medal. There would be further disappointment in the Champion’s League, however, as the infamous “ghost goal” saw Liverpool eliminate Chelsea in the semi-finals. The following season saw more glory in the league, with Spencer picking up a second winner’s medal, but more disappointment as another semi final against Liverpool ended in defeat, this time in the FA Cup, and in the second round of the Champion's League against Barcelona. The 2006 World Cup again saw Spencer feature, scoring against Sweden in the group stage. However, once again a quarterfinal with Portugal went to penalties, after the infamous “Ronaldo wink”, and this time Spencer’s penalty was saved by Ricardo.

Spencer's career hit a snag in the 2006/07 season as he picked up an injury against Charlton Athletic early in the season and spent much of the season on the treatment table. He did make a return late in the season, but by then it was too late to stop Manchester United from winning their first title since 2003. He started the following season with a point to prove, but despite being in top form, was overlooked by Steve McClaren for England's Euro 2008 qualifier against Croatia... which England lost 3-2 and failed to qualify. Under Grant, Spencer was almost ever-present in midfield, as Lampard and Ballack both saw their season hampered by injuries (and, in Lampard’s case, personal problems), and Grant preferred to play Michael Essien at right back. The Blues lost the title to Manchester United, the league cup final to Tottenham and an FA Cup fifth-round tie to Championship side Barnsley, but made it to the Champions League Final after giving Liverpool a taste of their own semifinal medicine. Sadly, the trophy would be decided in the cruellest way possible; John Terry’s slip taking the shootout to sudden death and Anelka’s miss handing United the trophy. Lying flat on his back from exhaustion and despair immediately after the match, Spencer was hauled up by Gary Neville (who hadn’t been picked), who told him, “I’m almost certain you’ll get another chance.” Neville would be proven right four years later.

2008-09 brought another setback, as Scolari froze Spencer out of the side during the early part of the season to the point that, by January, there was speculation that he might join Mourinho at Inter Milan. No such move materialised, and Spencer would get back in the first team after Scolari was sacked a month later and replaced by Guus Hiddink, who guided Chelsea to an FA Cup and third in the table.

Carlo Ancelotti guided Chelsea to a league and cup double, although things fell apart in the second season, but Spencer found himself frozen out once more under Andre Villas-Boas. When Roberto Di Matteo became manager, Spencer was brought back into the fold. The Blues faltered in the league, but continued their FA Cup and Champions League campaigns. In the latter, Spencer played in the second leg against Napoli as Chelsea overturned a 3-1 first leg deficit and scored a vital goal in the quarter final against Benfica. He also played in the defensive masterclass at the Nou Camp, in which a ten man side came back from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 and advance to the final. Then came what almost everyone agrees was the club’s finest hour, as the Blues recovered from a late Bayern goal to get an even later equaliser and beat them on penalties in their own backyard; Spencer had been down to take the sixth penalty if the shootout had gone into sudden death. 

Spencer started 2012/13 knowing that he would have to start thinking about retirement. He believed that he could probably play for another couple of seasons, and was still in Di Matteo’s plans for the season, until it ended abruptly at Loftus Road. Midway through the first half, Spencer ran into the QPR penalty area looking to pass to Hazard, but was chopped down by Ryan Nelsen in an obvious foul which was ignored by the referee. A post-match assessment found that he had broken his ankle, effectively ending his season and forcing him to retire.

For the following three years, Spencer continued to work on his coaching licenses, which he had begun studying in 2011. He also appeared occasionally on Sky Sports as a pundit. Meanwhile, with Di Matteo being sacked in November and replaced by Benitez, Chelsea eventually finished third and won the Europa League, although Spencer was not impressed by the Spaniard, accusing him of “playing chicken with Tottenham”. Nor was he impressed with the referees that season, suggesting that their failures to send off opposing players for offences such as Aguero’s stamp on David Luiz and Suarez's biting of Ivanovich, constituted dereliction of duty.

Spencer’s coaching career began in 2015, and he quickly rose through the ranks. However, on the pitch, things began to go disastrously wrong, as the aura of invincibility from the previous season burst completely. By the middle of December, Chelsea were hovering above the relegation zone, with Mourinho having lost his Midas touch completely. The club parted company with the seemingly-no-longer-special one and brought in Guus Hiddink, who took the club up to tenth. The one highlight of the season was ruining Tottenham’s title bid in an ill-tempered game at Stamford Bridge.

Antonio Conte arrived in 2016 and brought a new tactical style with him which, once implemented after a rocky start, swept all aside - including Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United - as the club bounced back to win the title. However, things immediately went downhill the following season, with the club slumping to fifth place in the league and having to make do with the FA Cup as Conte struggled for consistency. Conte was replaced by Maurizio Sarri in the summer of 2018, but he and Spencer did not get on, as Spencer questioned the effectiveness of his tactics and disliked his 80-a-day habit - not to mention his other habit of chewing cigarette ends on the touchline. Sarri departed for Juventus at the end of the season, and on 24th June 2019, the club unveiled George Spencer as their new manager.

Edited by Drogba11CFC

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Posted (edited)

In case the bulk of the backstory looks the same as my FM17 story, that's because it is. FM20 was 33% off for the first half of May, so I decided to give it a go. 

This is the 20.4 database, with a real names patch loaded so Juventus are called Juventus, not Piemonte Calcio or Zebre.

Edited by Drogba11CFC

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On 24th June 2019, Spencer began his first day at Stamford Bridge. With him in the boardroom was the club’s director, Marina Granovskaia.

 

This is our vision as a club,” she told him. “Overall, we want you to play entertaining, attacking, possession-based football. Off the pitch, we want you to sign promising young players and high-profile names, although we are under a transfer ban for this window. We’d also like you to develop young players through the academy. Hopefully, we can develop the best youth system in the world.

A youth system to rival the likes of Ajax and Barcelona?” Spencer replied, “That’ll take some doing.

This season,” Granovskaia said, “We want the club to qualify for the Champions League, reach the FA Cup Final, and reach the last eight of this season’s Champions League. Next season, we want to challenge for silverware and look to build on challenging for the Premier League title. We want to win the Premier League by the end of the 2024/25 season.

Spencer nodded.

Once again, I’d like to welcome you to Chelsea, and we hope that this is the beginning of a long and successful era.


 

Chelsea’s first pre-season friendly would take place at the Recreation Ground against Aldershot. This was part of the club’s affiliation with the Shots, and over 5,000 people were in attendance, most of them locals. Fielding a relatively second-string side, Spencer wished to emulate the "Gegenpressing" tactic that had seen Jurgen Klopp achieve success with Borussia Dortmund and Liverpool. 

It took seventeen minutes for the deadlock to be broken. A pass from Emerson found his fellow Italian Jorginho, who played a one-two with Ross Barkley. Barkley received the ball again just outside the D before sending it into the opposite top corner of the net. 

It took just three minutes for the next goal. A free Kick from Billy Gilmour was sent into the box. Aldershot's Alex Finney looked to head it behind, but only succeeded in sending a looping header into his own net. Then, in the 27th minute, Chelsea were awarded a penalty, and Jorginho sent the Aldershot keeper the wrong way to end the game as a contest.

The second half was much quieter as Spencer, seeing his players tire, switched to a less intense style, but in the 89th minute Billy Gilmour played a searching pass over the top to Armando Broja, who drifted past Jean-Yves Koué-Niate before finishing to round off the win.

The club's next friendly saw Shakhtar Donetsk come to Stamford Bridge. The lineup contained many more first team players, and this time it took just ten minutes for the deadlock to be broken. A corner by Mateo Kovacic was met by the head of Olivier Giroud, and although his header was cleared, the ball found N'Golo Kanté, whose volley was headed home by Ross Barkley. 

Four minutes before half time, Giroud looked to get a cross in. The ball evaded everyone, but Pedro got to it and played it back to Azpilicueta, whose cross was converted by Giroud. Then, early in the second half, a clearance from Taras Stepanenko could only find Barkley, who angled a 45 yard pass to Azpilicueta. Azpilicueta crossed the ball in, and Barkley headed home.

Chelsea's next two friendlies would see them visit EFL clubs, before they finished preseason in Greece. The first of these was Luton Town, who were beaten thanks to a ninth-minute Jorginho penalty and a three-minute brace from Pedro just after the half hour mark. Then came Charlton at The Valley, where Tammy Abraham, back from his holiday, scored both goals, although Charlton's Macauley Bonne had a goal ruled out in stoppage time.

The first of Chelsea's two Greek matches took them just outside Athens to Piraeus, to face Olympiakos. It took just 13 minutes to get going, as Kovacic sent a free kick into the area which was scrambled over the line by Mason Mount. Another goal followed in the 32nd minute, as Pedro sent an aerial ball to Danilo Pantic, who slotted the ball past Olympiakos keeper Allain into the far corner of the net.  Midway through the second half, Mount robbed Emre Mor before passing to Barkley. Barkley passed to Kovacic, who played a first time ball to Azpilicueta. Azpilicueta then sent an ambitious effort into the net from the edge of the area. Two minutes later, Abraham set up Pantic, who sent a rocket across Allain into the net for his second. Chelsea's defence would be breached - for the only time in preseason - in the 89th minute, as Valbuena's free kick was converted by an unmarked Sarrigiannis, but it was little more than a consolation. 

Chelsea's final friendly took place in Salonika, against PAOK. They would go ahead after just 40 seconds, as Azpilicueta's cross was met by a first time volley from a tight angle by Emerson. Willian added a second just after the hour with a powerful free kick, and Jorginho rounded things off in stoppage time with a goal similar to Azpilicueta's goal against Olympiakos.

Preseason had been encouraging for Chelsea. Now, on Saturday 10th August, the real challenge would begin when Sheffield United came to Stamford Bridge. 

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Chelsea's first game of the season would be against Sheffield United, returning to the Premier League after a twelve-year absence. Chris Wilder's team were predicted to go straight back down, but Spencer was wary of taking things for granted, as he told the Daily Mail's Jamie Dingwall in his pre-match press conference "Sheffield United deserve our respect. Anything less than 100% on our part will see us in real trouble." Chris Wilder himself was optimistic, saying that the fixture was "A big opportunity for our boys to impress and to show what they're capable of."

The first big story of the Premier League, however, broke before a ball was kicked, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer placing Paul Pogba on the transfer list. Spencer jumped at this, telling Sky Sports that Chelsea were considering a transfer deal. That would have to wait until January, however, as the season began. 

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

Azpilicueta Christensen Tomori Emerson 

Kovacic 

Kanté Mount

Willian Abraham Pedro 

Substitutes: Caballero, Alonso, Jorginho, Barkley, Zouma, Giroud, Batshuayi 

 

Sheff Utd

Henderson 

Basham Retsos Robinson 

Baldock Norwood Berge Stevens 

Freeman 

Mousset McBurnie

Substitutes: Verrips, Egan, Lundstram, Sharp, McGoldrick, Jagielka, Besic

 

Referee: Paul Tierney 

 

Chelsea looked to start the game on top, and in the fifth minute Azpilicueta searched out Pedro, who got into the area only to see his shot blocked by Basham. Three minutes later, Emerson played in Pedro, whose shot was saved by Henderson. 

 

The Blades' first chance came in the 15th minute. Basham played a free kick short to Norwood, who fed the ball left to Luke Freeman. Freeman hit a one touch pass to Baldock on the right, who played a one-two with Norwood before passing back to Norwood. Norwood then put in a cross, which was headed over by Stevens. 

 

A minute later, Pedro robbed Baldock, and cut inside before shifting it right to Willian. Willian hit a 40 yard pass to Pedro, whose cross was headed clear by Stevens but only as far as Emerson. Emerson tried to find Willian, whose shot was blocked.

 

In the 27th minute, Retsos was shown a yellow card for a trip on Tammy Abraham. Four minutes later, a Sheffield United attack broke down and Chelsea looked to counter. Abraham got on the end of Emerson's long ball and got into the area, but his shot was saved by Henderson. 

 

Chelsea continued to attack, and in the 41st minute, a lengthy siege on the Sheffield United goal ended with Azpilicueta skewing a shot wide. Just before halftime, Sander Berge entered the book for a foul on Azpilicueta. 

 

Chelsea looked to attack in the second half, with Tammy Abraham shooting wide in the first minute of the second half. In the 56th minute, Emerson played a one-two with Abraham before feeding Pedro. Pedro played it back to Emerson, who hit a pot-shot which Henderson managed to turn behind.

 

A minute later, a counter-attack by Chelsea saw Abraham beat Jack Robinson to Christensen's long ball and take it to the edge of the area, only to see his shot hit the side netting.

 

In the 71st minute, Kovacic attempted to play Emerson in behind the defence, but Baldock was able to tackle him. Emerson won the ball back and crossed it to the near post, where Pedro saw his shot and the rebound blocked before the ball was cleared behind. The resulting corner was claimed by Henderson, and Spencer opted to replace a disappointing Abraham with Olivier Giroud, before McGoldrick came on to replace Mousset.

 

With just over ten minutes left, Giroud played in Emerson, whose shot was blocked by Basham. With time running out, a tiring Willian was replaced by Ross Barkley. 

 

In the 84th minute, a run by Mason Mount saw him put in a cross to Pedro, whose volley was diverted over by the fingertips of Henderson. 

 

Sheffield United had a chance to win it in stoppage time, as a free kick was claimed by Kepa. Chelsea went straight to the other end, with Giroud sending a shot wide.

 

With time almost up, a free kick from Kovacic was headed clear by Robinson. 

 

Saturday 10th August 2019: Barclays Premier League - at Stamford Bridge, London 

Chelsea 0-0 Sheffield United 

Attendance: 41,631 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Emerson Palmieri 

 

"So all square in your first competitive match," Radio 5 Live's John Murray said to Spencer after the match, "Was that a missed opportunity to start with a win?"

 

"In all honesty, yes," Spencer replied, "In my view, we were the far better team and deserved to win."

 

"Can you explain Tammy Abraham's bad day in front of goal?"

 

"He'll have better days, hopefully this sort of thing doesn't become a regular occurrence."

 

"You must be pleased with Emerson's performance?"

 

"Absolutely, he was the best player on the pitch today."

 

The weekend's big story, however, came from Molineux the following day. European Champions Liverpool were one of the favourites for the title but they got off to a horrendous start, with Adama Traore opening the scoring after 37 seconds before turning provider for Raul Jimenez to give Wolves a 2-0 lead after just ten minutes. A penalty by Mohamed Salah and a snapshot by Adam Lallana saw Liverpool equalise in four second half minutes, but Leander Dendoncker pounced on a rebound in stoppage time after Adrian failed to hold the ball. 

 

Other results

 

Saturday:

Aston Villa 1-0 West Ham (Grealish 32)

Burnley 4-0 Brighton (Gudmundsson 50, Mee 52, Barnes 68, Gibson 82)

Newcastle 0-2 Norwich (Buendía 60, 66)

Man Utd 2-2 Leicester (Wan-Bissaka 57, Pogba 74; Pérez 10, Vardy 65)

Man City 3-2 Watford (Agüero pen 8, Silva 21, Rodri 53; Deulofeu 56, 81)

 

Sunday 

Crystal Palace 2-2 Tottenham (Schlupp 33, Ayew pen 76; Lucas Moura 85, Lo Celso 88)

Wolves 3-2 Liverpool (Traoré 1, Jiménez 10, Dendoncker 90+3; Salah pen 53, Lallana 57)

Arsenal 1-0 Bournemouth (Aubameyang 64; Wilson m/pen 69)

 

Monday

Everton 1-1 Southampton (Calvert-Lewin 14; Bertrand 45)

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As the previous season's Europa League winners, Chelsea had qualified for the UEFA Super Cup to face Liverpool. The Blues had won the competition in 1998, beating Real Madrid 1-0 thanks to a goal by Gus Poyet, but had been torn apart by future flop Falcao in 2012 before losing to Bayern Munich on penalties the following year. With Liverpool as favourites, Spencer intended to be cautious and attempt to control possession. Whilst it was nowhere near the height of the European rivalry between Liverpool and Chelsea, which included the "ghost goal" in 2005 and Drogba dominating Liverpool in 2008, both sets of fans were desperate to see their side triumph. 

 

Liverpool 

Adrián

Gomez Virgil Lovren Robertson 

Fabinho

Wijnaldum Henderson 

Salah Firmino Mané

Substitutes: Lonergan, Matip, Lallana, Origi, Shaqiri, Chirivella, Minamino, Keïta, Millar, van den Berg, Milner, Oxlade-Chamberlain

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

Azpilicueta Christensen Tomori Emerson 

Jorginho 

Kanté Kovacic 

Willian Abraham Pedro 

Substitutes: Caballero, Alonso, Mount, Barkley, Zouma, Giroud, Batshuayi, Rüdiger

 

Referee: Ovidiu Haţegan (ROU)

 

Most people expected Liverpool to dominate and within the first minute, Mané forced a save from Kepa. Thirty seconds later, Kepa produced an easier save, this time from Gomez.

 

In the fourth minute, Chelsea had their first chance. A period of good passing play saw Abraham receive the ball from Willian, before firing off a bending shot which Adrián did well to save. 

 

In the eighth minute, a Liverpool corner was headed clear to Willian, who drove the ball ahead of Abraham. Abraham collected the ball on the half way line and set off on a run into the Liverpool half, getting into the area before being bundled over by Robertson. Haţegan blew for a foul and went over to the video monitor to review the footage, before confirming his decision and showing Robertson a yellow card. With Eden Hazard now at Real Madrid, penalty taking duties fell to Jorginho. The Italian went for the bottom corner, but Adrián guessed correctly and tipped the ball around the post.

 

Two minutes later, a headed clearance from Christensen was intercepted by Fabinho, who passed back to Van Dijk. As Van Dijk looked to pass, he was robbed by Abraham, who left him standing and raced through the Liverpool half into the box, with Ian Darke, commentating on BT Sport, saying "There's only one outcome here!" as he slotted the ball past the onrushing Adrián to score a goal reminiscent of another goal scored against a European Champion by a Chelsea number nine and open his Chelsea account.

 

Liverpool looked to hit back immediately, with Salah heading straight at Kepa from a throw-in. Six minutes later, a corner was punched clear by Kepa, with Mané's follow-up being blocked as Jurgen Klopp urged his players to show more passion. Henderson was the next to try his luck, with his shot being parried by Kepa and cleared by Christensen. 

 

In the 23rd minute, a cross from Willian was blocked, with Mané looking to counter. The Senegalese winger got to the edge of the area and put in a cross, which was headed clear by Tomori, before Firmino was flagged up for offside. 

 

Five minutes before the interval, Jorginho was booked for a foul on Firmino. 

 

Three minutes into the second half, a corner from Salah was claimed by Kepa. Kepa sent a long ball to Willian, who took off into the Liverpool half before passing back to Kovacic. Kovacic then exchanged passes with Azpilicueta, before finding Jorginho. Jorginho lofted the ball across to Pedro, who passed to Emerson. Emerson got to the byline before crossing to Willian, who sent a header over the bar.

 

In the 66th minute, Lallana, on as a substitute for Fabinho, swung a low cross into the area which was cleared to Gomez. Gomez moved the ball left to Wijnaldum, who played it on to Henderson. Henderson played a 30 yard pass to Gomez, with Salah taking over. Salah went for the shot, but Tomori threw himself in front of it. Henderson got on the end of the resulting corner, only to head the ball over the bar.

 

Liverpool won another corner two minutes later, with Van Dijk heading towards goal only for Emerson to clear off the line. Kovacic then robbed Gomez on the halfway line and sent Abraham away through the middle. This time, however, his shot didn't trouble Adrián. 

 

In the 73rd minute, a throw-in by Azpilicueta was cleared by Robertson towards Mané. Azpilicueta intervened with a perfectly timed sliding tackle, and Willian looked for Emerson, who passed back to Jorginho. Jorginho found Azpilicueta on the right, and Azpilicueta passed to Kanté, who played in Willian. Willian tried his luck, but Adrián got across to tip it wide. 

 

Three minutes later, a long aerial pass by Lallana found Henderson, whose shot was saved by Kepa before Emerson was booked for a foul on Lallana.

 

In the 78th minute, a pass from Jordan Henderson was cut out by Tomori. Wijnaldum won the ball back and played a quick pass into the area for Salah, who fired a shot across Kepa into the bottom corner. As he celebrated, however, VAR spotted that he'd been offside, and the goal was chalked off. 

 

With seven minutes left, Azpilicueta made a great interception, getting past Robertson before passing to Pedro on the edge of the box. Pedro was fouled by Milner, and again Ovidiu Haţegan consulted the VAR monitor before ruling the foul to be outside the box.

 

With four minutes left, Abraham sent a ball to Emerson on the left. Emerson passed back to Mason Mount, on as a substitute for Willian, who crossed the ball to Pedro whose header was saved by Adrián. 

 

With less than a minute left, Salah sent a corner into the area. Mané got up to head at goal, but sent his header over. 

 

Chelsea refused to be broken, and a stoppage time run into the area by Mané was thwarted by an expert tackle from Jorginho. A last minute corner was cleared by Tomori, and time ran out for Liverpool. 

 

Wednesday 14 August 2019: UEFA Super Cup - at Vodafone Park, Istanbul 

Liverpool 0-1 Chelsea (Abraham 12, Jorginho m/pen 10)

Attendance: 41,188 

Man of the Match: Tammy Abraham 

 

When asked if he was pleased with Abraham's performance after the match, Spencer replied, "I have to be, he had a good game."

 

Liverpool and Chelsea were not the only English teams playing in Europe that week, as the following evening Wolves beat Brøndby IF 3-1 in Denmark to record a 6-1 aggregate win in the 3rd qualifying round of the Europa League.

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Chelsea returned from their triumph in Turkey to face a trip to the London Stadium to face rivals West Ham, the first of ten consecutive televised league games. Spencer opted to play the same team that had dominated Liverpool in the Super Cup, albeit with a more attacking outlook. 

 

West Ham United 

Fabianski 

Diop Ogbonna Balbuena

Zabaleta Fornals Rice Cresswell 

Yarmolenko Haller Anderson 

 

Substitutes: Randolph, Fredericks, Bowen, Ajeti, Antonio, Masuaku, Soucek

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

Azpilicueta Christensen Tomori Emerson 

Jorginho 

Kanté Kovacic 

Willian Abraham Pedro 

 

Substitutes: Caballero, Alonso, Mount, Barkley, Zouma, Giroud, Batshuayi 

 

Referee: Craig Pawson 

 

In the second minute of the game, a throw-in from Emerson found Jorginho, who chanced his arm with a shot for the top corner which Fabianski did well to tip over. 

 

The corner evaded everyone as Yarmolenko failed to clear, but Christensen claimed that he had been pushed. Craig Pawson asked VAR for clarification, before awarding a penalty. Jorginho stepped up, but blazed the ball comprehensively wide.

 

Two minutes later, a throw-in by Cresswell was nodded away by Azpilicueta to Kanté, whose subsequent run was stopped on the halfway line. Chelsea recovered, however, and a series of passes saw Kovacic feed in Emerson on the left. Emerson passed into the area for Pedro, but Emerson was flagged offside. 

 

In the eighth minute, Azpilicueta muscled the ball off Felipe Anderson and passed to Kovacic. Kovacic got past Rice and took the ball deep into the West Ham half before finding Kanté to his left. Kanté went for goal, but the shot and the follow up were blocked. Felipe Anderson broke away down the left, but his cross was cleared by Christensen.

 

In the eleventh minute, Fornals was penalised for pulling Kanté's shirt. The free kick was 30 yards out, but Willian sent a bending shot into the net to open the scoring. Martin Tyler, commentating on Sky Sports, described the goal as "Genius".

 

Chelsea looked to increase their lead, and ten minutes later a shot from Willian was saved by Fabianski. In the 22nd minute, a long ball from Jorginho found Azpilicueta, who crossed into the area. Pedro got his head to it, but it went over the bar. 

 

Shortly afterwards, a free kick from Kovacic was headed behind by Cresswell, with the resulting corner being cleared into touch. Then, in the 27th minute, a free kick from Kovacic rippled the side netting. West Ham looked to attack from the goal kick, but Chelsea countered, and Willian headed over from Pedro's cross. 

 

As the half hour mark approached, Haller was stopped by an expert tackle from Christensen. Willian set off down the right, turning Felipe Anderson before passing to Kovacic. After some good passing play, Kovacic angled a 30 yard pass to Emerson, who exchanged passes with Kovacic before sending in a cross. Abraham got his head to the ball, but Fabianski denied him.

 

In the 34th minute, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Once again, Willian fired the ball into the net from 30 yards to double Chelsea's lead. 

 

Chelsea nearly scored straight from the kick off, as Pedro had a shot blocked before Abraham hit the follow up wide. A minute later, Fornals was booked for upending Tammy Abraham.

 

Four minutes before half time, Emerson evaded a tackle and got  into the box before seeing a shot saved by Fabianski.

 

Two minutes later, Kovacic sent a corner into the box, which Abraham volleyed home at the near post. However, VAR spotted a handball by Abraham, who received a yellow card.

 

Chelsea shot out of the blocks in the second half, with Fabianski tipping Willian's shot around the post in the first twenty seconds. The second half was quieter, but it was still all Chelsea, and in the 63rd minute Chelsea were awarded a free kick 25 yards out.  Willian went for his hat-trick, but this time Fabianski tipped the shot around the post, with the corner being cleared. Cresswell then brought down Willian, and received a yellow card, before Azpilicueta was booked for holding Haller. 

 

West Ham tried to get back into the game, and a corner was headed clear by Tomori with fourteen minutes left. At the same time, Chelsea looked to put the result beyond doubt, and in the 85th minute Emerson took the ball down the left before playing a short pass to Pedro, who blazed a shot over. 

 

In the final minute of normal time, Declan Rice played a one-two with Fornals before passing to Anderson. Anderson passed back to Fornals, who hit a long ball to Fredericks on the right flank. Fredericks whipped the ball in, and Anderson was on hand to convert at the near post to set up a nervy three minutes of injury time, as Alan Smith asked "Have the West Ham fans left prematurely?"

 

As the clock ran down, Ross Barkley took the ball into the West Ham half, finding Mason Mount to his left. Mount then passed to Emerson, who took the ball to the area before passing back to Mount. Mount went for goal, but the shot was saved by Fabianski. The former Arsenal goalkeeper looked to launch an attack, but Christensen climbed above Fornals to head clear. Abraham collected the ball on the half way line, only to be flagged offside. As West Ham looked to launch one last attack, Zouma intercepted Masuaku's cross-field ball and guided a header towards Pedro. Pedro looked for Abraham, who timed his run perfectly and got into the area before sending the ball through the legs of Fabianski into the opposite corner of the net to clinch it for Chelsea. 

 

Saturday 17 August 2019, 19:45: Barclays Premier League - at London Stadium, London 

West Ham United 1-3 Chelsea (Felipe Anderson 90; Willian 11, 34, Abraham 90+3, Jorginho m/pen 3)

Attendance: 57,000 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Willian 

 

After the match, Spencer brushed off David Moyes' accusations of playing mind games, telling the Sun's Sid Collingwood "I think David is just annoyed about the result. I've got no problem with him other than that he manages our rivals." He also told Martin Samuel that "It's a great result for the fans, we couldn't have done it without them." Chelsea fans' weekends were made even better the following day, as Arsenal went down at Norwich thanks to a close-range effort by Emi Buendia. On the loan front, Charly Musonda was named as Man of the Match in Vitesse Arnhem's 6-0 win over PEC Zwolle, while Lucas Piazón was also named Man of the Match in Rio Ave's 2-0 win at Vitoria Setúbal.

Other results:

Saturday:

Tottenham 0-2 Man City (D. Silva 6, B. Silva 18)

Leicester 1-1 Everton (Vardy 71; Calvert-Lewin 14)

Watford 2-0 Newcastle (Deulofeu 83, Kabasele 90+3)

Liverpool 2-0 Crystal Palace (Oxlade-Chamberlain 27, Salah 90+2)

Sunday:

Brighton 0-3 Man Utd (James 2, 65, Wan-Bissaka 25)

Bournemouth 1-0 Wolves (Solanke 61)

Norwich 1-0 Arsenal (Buendía 11)

Monday:

Southampton 0-0 Burnley

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Chelsea’s second home game of the season was at home to Everton, who were now managed by former double-winning manager Carlo Ancelotti, under whom Spencer had played. As expected, “Don Carlo” got a warm welcome from the home crowd, most of whom hadn’t wanted him to be sacked at the end of the 2010/11 season. Spencer made one change to his side, with Pulisic making his debut in place of the injured Pedro.

 

Chelsea

 

Arrizabalaga

Azpilicueta Christensen Tomori Emerson

Jorginho

Kanté Kovacic

Willian Abraham Pulisic

 

Substitutes: Caballero, Alonso, Mount, Barkley, Zouma, Giroud, Batshuayi

 

Everton

 

Pickford

Coleman Keane Milner Sidibé

Gomes Sigurðsson

Richarlison Iwobi Bernard

Calvert-Lewin

 

Substitutes: Virginia, Holgate, Delph, Walcott, Schneiderlin, Baines, Davies

 

Referee: Peter Bankes

 

The first real chance of the match fell to the hosts in the fifth minute. A throw-in from Sidibé found Iwobi, who passed to Gomes. Gomes exchanged passes with Sigurðsson, before finding Richarlison on the right. Richarlison’s cross was headed out by Azpilicueta, but Bernard recovered it and looked to cross. Azpilicueta won it back, however, and launched a long ball towards Abraham, who took the ball into the box only to be denied by a tackle from Yerry Mina. 

 

In the ninth minute, a throw-in from Azpilicueta found Pulisic, who played in Kanté. Kanté went for goal, but again Mina got in the way before heading the resulting corner clear. Five minutes later, Chelsea won another corner. It was headed clear again, but only as far as Christensen, who played in Kovacic. Kovacic went for the near post, but the shot was tipped wide by Pickford.

 

In the sixteenth minute, Emerson’s throw-in found Abraham, who looked to cross. The cross was blocked, but the ball deflected to Emerson, who fed it left to Abraham. Abraham sent in a cross, but Pulisic’s volley was easily gathered by Pickford. Twelve minutes later, Chelsea won a free kick. Kovacic went for goal, but Pickford got up well to tip the shot away.

 

In the 29th minute, an Everton free kick was intercepted by Azpilicueta, who passed to Willian. Willian set off on a run, cutting inside before searching out Pulisic on the right. Pulisic got into the area and crossed to Willian, whose header skimmed the top of the bar.

 

Chelsea had dominated the opening half hour but in the 34th minute, Everton won a free kick after Emerson was booked for a shirt pull. Gylfi Sigurðsson stepped up and went for goal, with Kepa turning the ball behind. From the corner, Chelsea countered, and Pickford had to produce a superb save to deny Pulisic before the flag went up for offside. From the free kick, Willian got his head to it and headed to Abraham, who set off on a mazy run before going for glory from just inside the area, only for the ball to be secured by Pickford. Two minutes later, Chelsea won a free kick. Willian went for goal, but the ball was deflected by Gomes. Willian got it back and went for goal from out wide, with Pickford making a save before Calvert-Lewin cleared.

 

Five minutes before half time, Iwobi set up Bernard, who set off on a mazy run into the area before sending a shot harmlessly wide. A minute later, Emerson had an effort which was hit straight at Pickford.

 

As the half entered stoppage time, a throw-in from Emerson found Willian, who easily got away from Alex Iwobi. He slid the ball into the box for Abraham, who was tripped by André Gomes. With Jorginho having missed two penalties in as many games, the responsibility fell to Willian, who smashed the ball into the top corner, giving Pickford no chance.

 

Chelsea continued to press in the second half. In the 50th minute, they won a corner, which was headed clear by Mina. A minute later, a throw-in by Azpilicueta found Abraham, who put his cross too close to Pickford. Pickford’s kick was intercepted by Azpilicueta, but he lost the ball to Bernard, who set up some good passing play. Eventually, Sidibé sent the ball to Richarlison, whose shot was turned behind by Kepa. Michael Keane was booked two minutes later for a trip on Abraham.

 

In the 54th minute, a throw-in by Emerson found Kovacic, who played it back to Emerson. Emerson then exchanged passes with Abraham, before crossing for Pulisic, who sent a header at Pickford. Pickford then set up Richarlison, who got past Emerson and took the ball into the area, only to send his shot wide.

 

Midway through the second half, a throw-in by Emerson found Abraham, who took the ball into the area before sending a shot straight at Pickford. He was replaced by Olivier Giroud shortly afterwards, while Everton brought Fabian Delph on for Bernard.

 

In the 74th minute, Tomori took a free kick short to Willian, who looked forward to Pulisic. Pulisic got to the byline before delivering a cross to Giroud, who was denied by a reflex save by Pickford before the offside flag went up against Pulisic. Everton then made another change, with Theo Walcott replacing Dominic Calvert-Lewin. Pulisic was then taken off, with Mason Mount replacing him.

 

With just under ten minutes left, Chelsea won another corner. Keane intercepted and headed clear, but Christensen got to the loose ball first and played a smart one-two with Azpilicueta before swinging the ball out left ahead of Mason Mount. Mount was robbed by Seamus Coleman on the byline, but Kovacic won the ball back and played a one-two with Emerson. Kovacic then moved the ball on to Emerson, who sprinted past Coleman before crossing from the byline. Willian met the cross with a header, which was saved by Pickford. The match then petered out, with neither side either to muster up anything meaningful.

 

Saturday 24 August 2019, 17:30: Barclays Premier League - at Stamford Bridge, London

Chelsea 1-0 Everton (Willian pen 45+2)

Attendance: 41,631 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Willian

 

After the match, Carlo Ancelotti was pleased with his side’s defending, saying “If we continue to play like that, the results will follow.” He also spoke highly of Spencer, saying that “The two of us are good friends and share a similar outlook on football.” Spencer backed up the second statement, pointing out that Ancelotti “Has always been fondly remembered at Stamford Bridge”.

 

The victory saw Chelsea briefly move up to second in the table, behind surprise leaders Burnley, who had gone top earlier that day with a 1-0 win over Arsenal.

 

Other results:

Friday

Leicester 2-0 Watford (Vardy pen 69, Söyüncü 79)

Saturday

Brighton 2-1 Aston Villa (Dunk 3, Maupay 28, Montoya s/o 90+2; Grealish 10)

Burnley 1-0 Arsenal (Wood 57)

Newcastle 2-3 Tottenham (Lascelles 21, Joelinton 40; Alderweireld 32, Aurier 36, Bergwijn 68)

West Ham 2-0 Crystal Palace (Fornals 54, Yarmolenko 60)

Liverpool 4-2 Sheff Utd (Firmino 4, Fabinho pen 12, Mané 30, Salah 57; Stevens 49, Baldock 90+4, Stevens s/o 86)

 

Sunday

Man Utd 2-1 Southampton (Wan-Bissaka 15, James 88; Walker-Peters 60)

Wolves 0-0 Man City

Norwich 0-2 Bournemouth (Cook 38, Wilson 89)

 

Several of Chelsea’s loan players had notable weekends. Charlie Brown scored a hat-trick for Union SG in their 3-0 win at Olympia Wijgmaal in the Beker Van België fifth round, whilst Davide Zappacosta was also named Man of the Match, setting up Javier Pastore’s goal in Roma’s 1-0 win at Parma in Serie A. So too did Conor Gallagher, scoring in Swansea’s 2-0 win over Birmingham, and Trevoh Chalobah, scoring in Huddersfield Town’s 2-2 draw at Cardiff.

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On Thursday 29th August, the draw was made for the group stage of the UEFA Champions League. Spencer had informed his squad that he wanted them to watch the draw together in one of the hospitality suites.

Pot 1: Liverpool (ENG, CL), Chelsea (ENG, EL), Barcelona (ESP), Bayern Munich (GER), Juventus (ITA), Man City (ENG), PSG (FRA), Zenit (RUS)
Pot 2: Real Madrid (ESP), Atletico Madrid (ESP), Porto (POR), Borussia Dortmund (GER), Shakhtar (UKR), Napoli (ITA), Tottenham (ENG), Ajax (NED)
Pot 3: Benfica (POR), Lyon (FRA), Bayer Leverkusen (GER), Red Bull Salzburg (AUT), Club Brugge (BEL), Valencia (ESP), Celtic (SCO), FC Copenhagen (DEN)
Pot 4: Inter Milan (ITA), Lokomotiv Moscow (RUS), Genk (BEL), Galatasaray (TUR), RB Leipzig (GER), Slavia Prague (CZE), Atalanta (ITA), Lille (FRA)

Zenit were the first team drawn, going into Group A. Barcelona then went into Group B, with Liverpool in Group C and PSG in Group D. Juventus went into Group E, with Bayern in Group F, Chelsea in Group G and Man City in Group H.

Then came the second pot, with plenty of teams Spencer hoped to avoid. Porto went into Group A, with Ajax joining Barcelona in Group B. To Spencer’s relief, Real Madrid went into Group C with Liverpool, while Tottenham joined PSG in Group D. Borussia Dortmund joined Juventus in Group E, with Atletico Madrid going into Group F with Bayern. Napoli joined Chelsea in Group G, with Shakhtar going into Group H.

Then came pot 3, which also had some potential pitfalls lurking inside. Valencia were drawn into Group A, with FC Copenhagen in Group B. Liverpool and Real Madrid were joined in Group C by Club Brugge, while Benfica were drawn in Group D. Salzburg went into Group E, with Celtic in Group F. Bayer Leverkusen joined Chelsea and Napoli in Group G, while Lyon were drawn into Group H.

Finally, there was pot 4, which still had a few nasty ties lurking. RB Leipzig went into Group A, with Atalanta going into Group B. Lokomotiv Moscow were drawn into Group C, with Genk being drawn in Group D. Lille went into Group E, with Inter Milan in Group F. Slavia Prague rounded off Chelsea’s group, with Galatasaray going into Group H.

Groups in full:
Group A: Zenit, FC Porto, Valencia, RB Leipzig
Group B: Barcelona, Ajax, FC Copenhagen, Atalanta
Group C: Liverpool, Real Madrid, Club Brugge, Lokomotiv Moscow
Group D: PSG, Tottenham, Benfica, KRC Genk
Group E: Juventus, Borussia Dortmund, Red Bull Salzburg, LOSC Lille
Group F: Bayern Munich, Atletico Madrid, Celtic, Inter Milan
Group G: Chelsea, SSC Napoli, Bayer 04 Leverkusen, Slavia Prague
Group H: Man City, Shakhtar, Olympique Lyonnais, Galatasaray
 

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Chelsea's final match of the season saw them travel to Selhurst Park to face Crystal Palace. The Eagles had picked up just one point from their opening three matches, but Spencer knew that they could spring a nasty surprise; in October 2017, they'd lost their opening seven games without scoring before beating Chelsea 2-1. In addition, Gary Cahill was now plying his trade there, after spending seven years at Stamford Bridge. 

Crystal Palace 


Guaita
Ward Cahill Sakho van Aanholt
Zaha Milivojevic Kouyaté McArthur Meyer
Ayew

Substitutes: Hennessey, Dann, McCarthy, Tosun, Schlupp, Riedewald

Chelsea


Kepa 
Azpilicueta Christensen Tomori Emerson 
Jorginho 
Kanté Kovacic 
Pulisic Abraham Willian 

Substitutes: Caballero, Alonso, Mount, Barkley, Zouma, Giroud, Batshuayi 

It was Palace who had the first chance in the fifth minute, as McArthur won a corner which was claimed by Kepa. Chelsea then went up the other end, with Kanté hitting a shot just wide. Two minutes later, a Chelsea corner was headed clear but only as far as Kanté. Kanté slipped the ball to Willian, who sent it inches wide.

In the twelfth minute, Milivojevic was booked for a foul on Kovacic. Willian took the free kick, which found the net via the head of Abraham to give Chelsea the lead. 

Four minutes later, Christensen sent Azpilicueta away down the right. Azpilicueta played the ball back to Kovacic, who exchanged passes with Kanté before lofting the ball to Azpilicueta. Azpilicueta played it to Kanté, who let fly from outside the box and was denied by a fine stop by Guaita.

Just before the half hour mark, a corner from Kovacic was met by Abraham, whose volley was saved by Guaita.

Five minutes from the break, Kovacic encouraged Pulisic to come forward with a searching pass. Pulisic cut inside and passed to Kanté, whose first time shot was blocked by Kouyaté. Jorginho picked up on the loose ball and sent one down the left for Emerson, who delivered a cross to Pulisic. Pulisic controlled the ball and let fly, only for Guaita to tip the ball over the bar. From the corner, Pulisic got up to head at goal, only for his header to be saved by Guaita. 

Chelsea would regret that miss. Just before half time, a throw-in by Zaha found Ayew. Ayew slipped the ball back to Zaha, who went for glory. Kepa got a hand to it, but couldn't stop it from going in.

Palace started the second half stronger, and won a corner in the 52nd minute. Kouyaté connected, but headed over from a tight angle. 

In the 66th minute, Emerson threw the ball in to Kovacic, who sent it right to Jorginho. Jorginho let fly and sent the ball whistling into the top corner from 25 yards to give Chelsea the lead again, with the goal being described as "absolutely stupendous" by Martin Tyler on Sky Sports. 

Four minutes later, a long ball from van Aanholt found Schlupp, who got into the area before squaring to Ayew, whose shot was blocked by Jorginho. A minute later, a Palace attack broke down and Emerson took the ball down the left before sending a diagonal pass to Pulisic. Pulisic had a go from a tight angle, but his shot was turned behind by Guaita. 

In the 77th minute, Kouyaté drove the ball ahead of Ayew, who brought Schlupp into play with a searching pass. Schlupp got into the area and had a shot, which was saved by Kepa. 

With eight minutes left, Chelsea won a free kick. Willian went for goal, but his effort was saved by Guaita. Palace looked to attack, with Schlupp seeing a header saved by Kepa.

Five minutes later, a searching pass from Jorginho found Willian, who cut inside before seeing a shot saved by Guaita.

In the 90th minute, a counter attack by the hosts saw Schlupp send a cross to Ayew, whose header was tipped against the bar by Kepa before Emerson cleared.

Saturday 31 August 2019, 17:30: Barclays Premier League - at Selhurst Park, London 
Crystal Palace 1-2 Chelsea (Zaha 44; Abraham 13, Jorginho 66)
Attendance: 26,297 (2,629 away)
Man of the Match: Mateo Kovacic 

The result saw Chelsea move up to second, level on points with leaders Manchester City, where they stayed after Man Utd were held to a 0-0 draw at Watford. Spencer would be named Manager of the Month for August, with Willian's opening goal against West Ham coming second in Goal of the Month to Kyle Walker-Peters' equaliser for Southampton against Manchester United.

Other results:

Friday 
Tottenham 1-0 West Ham (Davies 81)

Saturday 
Man City 3-1 Liverpool (De Bruyne 64, Jesus 67, 90+5)
Bournemouth 0-1 Leicester (Iheanacho 63)
Everton 2-1 Norwich (Calvert-Lewin 12, Keane 53; Trybull 38)
Sheff Utd 3-1 Burnley (McBurnie 14, Mousset 22, 47; Barnes 57)
Southampton 4-1 Brighton (Højbjerg 29, Redmond 36, Romeu 50, Armstrong 53; Bernardo 21)
Watford 0-0 Man Utd 

Sunday 
Arsenal 4-0 Newcastle (David Luiz pen 32, 35, 53, pen 83)
Aston Villa 1-3 Wolves (Drinkwater 28; Jiménez 8, Jota 48, 81)
 

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Following the international break, Chelsea faced Aston Villa at Stamford Bridge. This saw the return to Stamford Bridge of John Terry, who was now the assistant manager of Aston Villa. Spencer shuffled his side, bringing in Antonio Rüdiger and Mason Mount. In the run up to the match, Dean Smith had said that Spencer had done "brilliant work" as Chelsea manager. On the international front, Fikayo Tomori had won his first two England caps, having played in England’s wins in Kosovo and Bulgaria.

Chelsea 

Kepa 
Tomori Christensen Rüdiger Azpilicueta 
Jorginho 
Kanté Kovacic 
Willian Abraham Mount 

Substitutes: Caballero, Alonso, Barkley, Zouma, Giroud, Pulisic, Batshuayi 

Aston Villa 


Reina
Guilbert Konsa Engels Targett
McGinn Hourihane
El Ghazi Grealish Trezeguet
Samatta

Substitutes: Heaton, Hause, Nakamba, Wesley, Douglas Luiz, Elmohamady, Jota

Chelsea looked to start stronger and in the fourth minute, Abraham intercepted a pass and passed back to Kanté. Kanté tried his luck from the edge of the area, but couldn't direct the ball goalwards. Kanté had another try a minute later, striking the ball just over. 

In the eighth minute, a free kick by Kovacic was sent into the area. Konsa was adjudged to have pushed Christensen, and Paul Tierney blew for a penalty. Jorginho stepped up and made it third time lucky, placing the ball into the bottom corner to break his spot-kick duck.

Aston Villa were dealt a blow in the twelfth minute, as Matt Targett pulled a calf muscle and was replaced by Hause.

In the 23rd minute, Mason Mount took the ball down the left and went for goal, but skewed his shot horribly wide. Four minutes later, Chelsea were awarded a free kick, which Willian came within inches of scoring. 

In the 36th minute, Kanté robbed Engels on the edge of the Aston Villa box. Rather than set up Tammy Abraham, however, he elected to shoot, with Reina tipping his shot wide. The resulting corner was cleared and Aston Villa looked to counter, but Grealish was stopped by an excellent sliding tackle by Azpilicueta. 

In first half stoppage time, Willian got into the area and looked to shoot, with his effort being saved by Reina. 

In the 52nd minute, Tomori was booked for a foul on Samatta. Six minutes later, Willian struck a free kick that was pushed away by Reina before being cleared behind. Shortly afterwards, a disappointing Abraham was replaced by Batshuayi. 

Chelsea won another free kick in the 67th minute, and again Willian saw his shot pushed away by Reina. Mount then played in Batshuayi, whose shot was inches wide. 

With two minutes left, Kovacic knocked the ball out to the left for Mason Mount. Mount crossed to Batshuayi, whose shot was blocked by Konsa.

Villa were unable to muster anything up and Chelsea secured another win, but the finishing was cause for concern.

Sunday 15 August 2019, 14:00: Barclays Premier League - at Stamford Bridge, London 
Chelsea 1-0 Aston Villa (Jorginho pen 9)
Attendance: 41,631 (3,000 away)
Man of the Match: Mateo Kovacic 

Other results:

Friday
Wolves 3-1 Tottenham (Traoré 57, Jiménez pen 60, Diogo Jota 73; Patricio og 61)
West Ham 1-1 Sheff Utd (Haller 86; Freeman 31)

Saturday 
Liverpool 1-0 Watford (van Dijk 52)
Brighton 1-2 Arsenal (Duffy 86; Nelson 28, Tierney 90+1)
Leicester 2-0 Southampton (Tielemans 19, Ndidi 51)
Man Utd 2-0 Bournemouth (Martial 9, Pogba 45)
Norwich 0-3 Man City (Gabriel Jesus 81, 84, B. Silva 90+4)

Sunday 
Newcastle 2-3 Everton (Joelinton 42, Lazaro 80; Sigurdsson 32, Richarlison 53, Iwobi 60)

Monday 
Burnley 1-0 Crystal Palace (Wood 87)
 

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Chelsea's opening Champions League match was away to Slavia Prague, who the Blues had faced on their way to winning the Europa League the previous season. With Abraham having sustained a bruised foot, Spencer opted not to risk him, playing Giroud up front.

 

Slavia Prague 

Taborsky

Vlcek Schick Vlcek Hunal

Tetour Tvrdik

Pospisil Koubek Chalus

Kodr

Substitutes: Bohac, Goerojo, P. Koukal, Gabriel, K. Koukal, Soucek

 

Chelsea 

Kepa

Azpilicueta Christensen Rüdiger Emerson 

Jorginho 

Kanté Kovacic 

Pulisic Giroud Willian 

 

Substitutes: Caballero, Alonso, Barkley, Pedro, Zouma, Abraham, Batshuayi 

 

Ils sont les meilleurs

Sie sind die besten

These are the Champions 

 

Die meister

Die besten

Les meilleurs équipes

The Champions!

 

In the tenth minute, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Willian's shot was pushed away by Taborsky, but Rüdiger pounced on the rebound to score his first goal since being injured.

 

Eleven minutes later, Jorginho found Pulisic, who took the ball down the right and into the area, only to be tackled by Hunal.

 

In the 34th minute, Slavia Prague looked to launch a counter attack, but Kanté went in with both feet to stop Kodr, and Antonio Matéu Lahoz had no hesitation in producing the red card.

 

Chelsea looked to protect their lead, but eleven minutes into the second half, Pulisic fed in Giroud, whose shot was saved by Taborsky. 

 

In the 60th minute, a throw-in by Emerson found Giroud, who quickly played it back. Emerson sent a cross into the area, where Pulisic arrived to volley the ball home and open his Chelsea account on his birthday. 

 

A minute later, however, Slavia Prague were awarded a free kick. Tvrdik sent the ball into the box for Schick, who got up above Christensen to pull a goal back.

 

In the 69th minute, Chelsea won a corner. Kovacic floated the ball into the area, and Giroud powered a header into the net to restore Chelsea's two-goal lead.

 

Slavia Prague were unable to produce much in the last twenty minutes. The closest they came was with two minutes left, as Goerojo saw a shot comfortably saved by Kepa. Chelsea could, in fact, have had a fourth, with Pedro taking the ball down the left and sending in a cross to Pulisic, who saw his header easily saved by Taborsky.

 

Wednesday 18 September 2019, 20:00: UEFA Champions League Group G - at Eden, Prague 

Slavia Prague 1-3 Chelsea (Schick 61; Rüdiger 10, Pulisic 60, Giroud 68, Kanté s/o 34)

Attendance: 20,232 (1,011 away)

Man of the Match: Mateo Kovacic 

 

After the match, Spencer was full of praise for Kovacic, calling his performance "absolutely outstanding".

Group Table:

| Pos  | Inf   | Team                | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Chelsea             | ENG   | 1     | 1     | 0     | 0     | 3     | 1     | 2     | 3     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Bayer 04 Leverkusen | GER   | 1     | 0     | 1     | 0     | 2     | 2     | 0     | 1     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | SSC Napoli          | ITA   | 1     | 0     | 1     | 0     | 2     | 2     | 0     | 1     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Slavia Prague       | CZE   | 1     | 0     | 0     | 1     | 1     | 3     | -2    | 0     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

 

Other results:

Group A: RB Leipzig 0-0 Valencia, Zenit 0-0 FC Porto 

Group B: Ajax 1-2 Barcelona (Huntelaar 27; Suárez 2, 23), FC København 0-2 Atalanta (Rafael Tolói 66, Muriel 79)

Group C: Lokomtiv Moscow 0-3 Real Madrid (Bale 9, Hazard 65, 79), Liverpool 3-0 Club Brugge KV (Alexander-Arnold 13, Salah 30, Mané 58)

Group D: KRC Genk 0-3 PSG (Di María 28, 30, 84), SL Benfica 2-1 Tottenham (Ferro 25, Pizzi pen 47; Kane 84)

Group E: LOSC Lille 3-3 Juventus (Yusuf Yazici 6, Osimhen 24, Sanches 47; Higuaín 16, 56, Cristiano Ronaldo 52), FC Red Bull Salzburg 1-2 Borussia Dortmund (Berisha 80; Haaland 28, 61)

Group F: Bayern Munich 4-1 Celtic (Thiago 5, Ajer og 9, Lewandowski pen 45+3, Müller 72; Edouard 90+1), Inter Milan 1-0 Atlético Madrid (Skriniar 60)

Group G: Napoli 2-2 Bayer Leverkusen (Milik 10, 39; Tapsoba pen 9, Bailey 17)

Group H: Galatasaray 2-0 Shakhtar (Büyük 33, Belhanda 59), Man City 3-0 Lyon (Agüero 41, B. Silva 71, Sterling 81)

 

Europa League:

Group A: Arsenal 2-0 Ferencváros (Lacazette 8, Ceballos 19)

Group C: Man Utd 3-0 PAOK (Fred 6, Mata 9, Martial 40)

Group D: Rangers 2-0 Red Star Belgrade (Morelos 26, 27, Helander s/o 66)

Group I: Wolves 2-0 Braga (Diogo Jota 2, Podence 85)

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Chelsea travelled to Southampton knowing that they had a chance to go top, although it was only temporary given that the Manchester Derby was taking place later that day. The three goalscorers from Prague all retained their places in the side. 

 

Southampton 

McCarthy 

Stephens Bednarek Danso

Walker-Peters Ward-Prowse Højbjerg Armstrong Bertrand 

Ings Redmond 

Substitutes: Lewis, Vestergaard, Romeu, Long, Boufal, Vokins, Obafemi

 

Chelsea

Kepa 

Azpilicueta Christensen Rüdiger Emerson 

Jorginho 

Kanté Kovacic 

Pulisic Giroud Willian 

Substitutes: Caballero, Alonso, Abraham, Pedro, Zouma, Mount, Batshuayi 

 

Referee: Anthony Taylor 

 

It was Southampton who had the first chance in the fifth minute, as a corner from Ward-Prowse met the head of Stephens, whose header was tipped over by Kepa.

 

A minute later, Azpilicueta sent a cross to the far post, where Willian saw his header saved by McCarthy. McCarthy's kick was intercepted by Azpilicueta, who took the ball down the right before sending in another cross, which Willian headed just wide.

 

Chelsea looked to stamp their authority on the game, and in the eleventh minute Pulisic got into the area before pulling the ball back for Giroud, whose shot was saved by McCarthy. 

 

A minute later, Emerson gave the ball away to Walker-Peters, who looked for Ings to his left. Ings played a pass to Højbjerg, whose shot was blocked by Rüdiger. Chelsea then attacked, and a header from Willian was saved by McCarthy. 

 

Southampton then went to the other end, with a hopeful looking shot from Bertrand being deflected behind by Azpilicueta.

 

Five minutes from the break, Southampton were awarded a free kick. Ward-Prowse stepped up, but the ball struck Willian in the wall.

 

Chelsea then won a free kick, and Kovacic sent the ball into the area, where Giroud rose highest only to see his shot deflect off the crossbar.

 

Four minutes later, Kovacic sent another free kick into the area, which Christensen volleyed just over from a tight angle. 

 

Four minutes into the second half, a throw-in by Emerson found Giroud, who played it back. Emerson passed right to Kovacic, who played it to Giroud. Giroud passed to Jorginho, whose cross was cleared by Danso but only as far as Kovacic. Kovacic passed to Kanté, who sent a shot just wide. 

 

In the 58th minute, Walker-Peters tripped Emerson, and was shown a yellow card. 

 

In the 62nd minute, Azpilicueta played the ball forward to Pulisic, whose cross was deflected behind for a corner. Shortly afterwards, a disappointing Giroud and Willian were withdrawn for Abraham and Pedro. 

 

Midway through the second half, a pass from Azpilicueta found Emerson on the edge of the box. Emerson went for goal, only to be denied by the side netting. 

 

Four minutes later, a free kick from Kovacic found Rüdiger, whose header struck the outside of the post.

 

In the 74th minute, Azpilicueta sent a cross-field ball to Emerson, who passed back to Kovacic. Kovacic played in Pedro, whose shot was deflected to Bednarek.

 

With two minutes left, Oriol Romeu was booked for a foul on Kanté. Kovacic stepped up, but his free kick hit the side netting.

 

Saturday 22 September 2019, 13:30: Barclays Premier League - at St Mary's Stadium, Southampton 

Southampton 0-0 Chelsea 

Attendance: 32,384 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: James Ward-Prowse 

 

The draw actually sent Chelsea top of the league for two and a half hours, but they would be displaced by Manchester City following the Manchester Derby. 

 

Other results: 

 

Friday:

Sheff Utd 0-5 Norwich (Drmic 33, Zimmermann 39, McLean pen 45+3, Aarons 50, Rupp 78)

 

Saturday:

Tottenham 2-1 Burnley (Lo Celso 64, Pope og 72; Wood 41, Rodriguez s/o 50)

Watford 0-1 West Ham (Felipe Anderson 89)

Aston Villa 0-3 Liverpool (Firmino 35, 50, Lallana 74)

 

Sunday:

Arsenal 2-1 Leicester (Aubameyang 38, 80; Barnes 45)

Crystal Palace 1-0 Wolves (McCarthy 79)

Everton 3-1 Brighton (Sigurdsson pen 21, Walcott 27, 41; Webster 12)

Man City 3-2 Man Utd (Agüero 23, B. Silva 50, Fernandinho 90+1; Rashford pen 4, Fernandes 79)

 

Monday:

Bournemouth 5-0 Newcastle (Cook 10, 12, Fraser 28, Rico 38, H. Wilson pen 50)

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The draw for the third round of the Carabao Cup saw Chelsea travel to face Burnley at Turf Moor. Spencer rotated his side heavily; the Carabao Cup was low on Roman Abramovich's list of priorities, but there was less than 72 hours between the game at St Mary's and the one at Turf Moor, and in addition a trip to the Emirates loomed on the horizon. 

 

Burnley 

Pope

Long Gibson Mee Pieters

Lennon Westwood Cork McNeil

Hendrick

Wood

Substitutes: Hart, Taylor, Brownhill, Barnes, Goodridge, Bardsley, Ogunby

 

Chelsea

Caballero 

James Zouma Tomori Alonso 

Kanté 

Barkley Mount 

Pedro Batshuayi Hudson-Odoi

Substitutes: Kepa, Azpilicueta, Willian, Giroud, Rüdiger, Pulisic, Abraham 

 

Referee: Martin Atkinson 

 

In the third minute, a searching pass from Mason Mount found Pedro, who took the ball down before taking a shot which skimmed the top of the bar. Pedro went for goal again in the eleventh minute, with his shot from a tight angle being saved by Pope.

 

Midway through the first half, Reece James sent a free kick into the area. Zouma's looping header found Hudson-Odoi, whose volley hit the post. 

 

Six minutes later, Chelsea won a corner. Mount floated the ball to the back post, where Batshuayi planted a header into the net to give Chelsea the lead.

 

In the 34th minute, Burnley suffered a blow when Erik Pieters got to the edge of the box before being tackled by James. The tackle was fair, but Pieters sustained a twisted ankle and was replaced by Charlie Taylor.

 

Six minutes into the second half, Pedro took the ball down the right into the box. This time, he passed back to Pedro. Barkley put in a cross to Batshuayi, whose header was tipped over by Pope. The resulting corner was headed clear by Mee but only as far as Zouma, who passed to Pedro. Pedro's pass found Mount, whose cross was cleared. 

 

With just over twenty minutes to go, James sent in a free kick from the right. Batshuayi got his head to the ball, but his header was saved by Pope. Pope's clearance caught Chelsea unawares and found Chris Wood, who got into the area only to see his shot saved by Caballero.

 

As time ran out, Spencer replaced a tiring Hudson-Odoi with Willian. With three minutes left, Alonso took the ball down the left before sending in a cross to Willian, whose volley was saved by Pope.

 

Tuesday 24 September 2019, 19:45: Carabao Cup third round - at Turf Moor, Burnley 

Burnley 0-1 Chelsea (Batshuayi 29)

Attendance: 16,730 (843 away)

Man of the Match: Mason Mount 

 

Other results:

 

Tuesday:

Brentford 1-0 Liverpool (Baptiste 37)

Huddersfield 0-0 Millwall (Molumby m/pen 42) Millwall won 5-4 on penalties 

Norwich 0-0 Everton Everton won 5-4 on penalties 

QPR 2-1 Nottingham Forest (Osayi-Samuel 45+3, Amos 53; Grabban 43)

Tottenham 3-1 West Brom (Lucas Moura 27, 38, Kane pen 90; Pereira 17)

Wycombe 2-1 Accrington Stanley (Akinfenwa 43, Parker 54, Jacobson s/o 82; Zanzala 32, Finley s/o 41)

 

Wednesday:

Arsenal 1-0 Crewe Alexandra (Martinelli pen 19, Holding s/o 82)

Leicester 3-0 Man City (Gray 44, Barnes 46, 72)

Newcastle 4-1 Tranmere (Gayle 16, 22, pen 33, Manquillo 35; Wilson 69)

Oxford United 0-3 Fulham (Kebano 40, Mitrovic 59, Odoi 74)

Sheff Utd 0-1 Macclesfield (Cameron 8)

Southampton 1-1 Crystal Palace (Redmond 79; Ayew 11) Crystal Palace win 5-3 on penalties 

Swansea City 1-2 Bournemouth (Brewster 85; Fraser 15, Solanke 31)

Watford 1-1 Wolves (Welbeck 80; Coady pen 53) Wolves win 5-3 on penalties 

West Ham 0-1 Man Utd (Rashford pen 6)

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The draw for the fourth round of the Carabao Cup took place on the morning of the Arsenal game, and Spencer listened to it in his office.

 

"The first team out," the announcer said, "Is number 2, AFC Bournemouth. They will play...number 14, Tottenham Hotspur."

 

"Number 8, Millwall, will play...number 13, Queens Park Rangers."

 

"Number 11, Everton, are at home to...number 6, Fulham."

 

"Number 16, Wycombe Wanderers, will play...number 12, Manchester United."

 

"Number 5, Brentford, are at home to...number 7, Crystal Palace."

 

"Number 9, Leicester City, will play...number 1, Macclesfield Town."

 

"Number 10, Wolverhampton Wanderers, are at home to...number 15, Chelsea."

 

"And finally, number 3, Arsenal, will play number 4, Newcastle United."

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Spencer's first big derby as Chelsea manager saw his side travel to the Emirates to face Arsenal. It was the first time the clubs had faced off since the Europa League final, and Arsenal had a new manager. During the 2018/19 season, fans had rapidly lost patience with Unai Emery, and he'd left his post in June. His replacement was Mikel Arteta, who'd taken Arsenal up to fourth after a rocky start.

 

In the run-up to the match, Mikel Arteta told the Sun that "I'd be lying if I said that the added weight of expectation from the fans didn't cause a few extra nerves ahead of a match like this, it's one of those matches where the fear of losing can outweigh the joy of winning and we have to manage our nerves as best we can." Spencer told the Sun that "I found his comments surprising; if I were an Arsenal fan I'd be very concerned because it would appear their manager doesn't believe they can win."

 

It was advertised as a weekend of derbies; the Merseyside Derby took place on Friday night, with El Clasico taking place on Saturday evening. BT Sport set the tone, with "London Calling" and "Two Tribes" being played in their build up. 

 

Arsenal 

Leno

Bellerín Chambers Luiz Tierney 

Ceballos Xhaka

Nelson Özil Aubameyang 

Lacazette 

 

Substitutes: Martínez, Marí, Torreira, Martinelli, Guendouzi, Cédric, Nketiah

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

Azpilicueta Tomori Rüdiger Emerson 

Jorginho 

Kovacic Mount 

Pulisic Abraham Willian 

 

Substitutes: Caballero, Christensen, Kanté, Giroud, Zouma, James, Batshuayi 

 

Referee: Simon Hooper 

 

Chelsea looked to dominate and with two minutes gone, a free kick from Kovacic was headed clear by Chambers. Azpilicueta then took the ball down the right, only for his cross to be blocked. Arsenal then looked to counter, and Aubameyang took the ball from his own half into the Chelsea area before shooting wide.

 

In the eleventh minute, a throw-in by Azpilicueta found Pulisic, who lost the ball to Tierney. Tierney's clearance, however, was intercepted by Tomori, who played the ball down the line for Pulisic. Pulisic sent a cross into the area, which was cleared by Chambers to Xhaka. Xhaka looked to find Nelson, but Willian intercepted and looked to cross. Bellerín cleared, but Jorginho won the ball back and played a one-two with Kovacic before looking for Mount. Mount passed back to Jorginho, who exchanged passes with Kovacic before spraying the ball left for Emerson. Emerson cut inside and went for goal from a tight angle, only to see his shot blocked by Leno. The rebound, however, fell to Abraham, who had no problem volleying it into the top corner. 

 

Chelsea looked to turn the screw, and four minutes later a cross from Pulisic was only cleared as far as Mount, who sent the ball straight at Leno. Arsenal then went forward, with Aubameyang crossing to Lacazette, whose header was saved by Kepa. 

 

In the 26th minute, Emerson's throw-in found Willian, who played it back. Emerson's cross was cleared by Chambers but only as far as Pulisic, who played in Azpilicueta. Azpilicueta went for goal, but his shot was saved by Leno. 

 

Six minutes later, Emerson found Mount with a low first time pass. Mount moved the ball right to Kovacic, who searched out Azpilicueta on the right wing. Azpilicueta headed to Pulisic, who was blocked by Tierney. Azpilicueta won the ball back, and curled a cross to the far post where Willian got up to power a header into the net.

 

Arsenal seemed unable to cope with Chelsea's tiki-taka style, and four minutes before half time Jorginho passed left to Emerson. Emerson got to the byline and pulled the ball back to Abraham, who was denied a second by a last-ditch tackle from David Luiz.

 

In stoppage time, Reiss Nelson sent a free kick into the area, which David Luiz headed over the bar. 

 

Chelsea looked to attack straight from kick off, and a shot from Kovacic deflected off two Arsenal players before Tierney cleared it into touch. 

 

In the 48th minute, Arsenal won a free kick. Reiss Nelson sent the ball into the area, only for Kepa to catch the ball. Chelsea went up the other end, and Leno had to be at full stretch to tip Willian's shot behind. 

 

Three minutes later, Arsenal won a throw-in. Tierney threw the ball to Özil, who played it back. Tierney sent a cross into the area, and Reiss Nelson got away from Emerson to send a header into the bottom corner off the post and bring Arsenal back into the game. 

 

A minute later, a cross from Bellerín was headed clear by Tomori, but only as far as Xhaka. Under pressure from Mount, Xhaka passed back to David Luiz, who played it right to Chambers. Chambers, however, took too much time on the ball and was robbed by Abraham, who raced clean through into the Arsenal half before sending the ball into the bottom corner with Leno stranded.

 

Arsenal looked to get back into the game, and in the 58th minute, a free kick from Nelson was headed back by Lacazette to David Luiz, whose shot was blocked by Jorginho.

 

Four minutes later, a clearance found Aubameyang, who played it past Tomori and evaded Rüdiger before his shot was blocked by Kepa. Arsenal then won a throw-in, with Rüdiger heading clear. Chelsea then countered, with Pulisic seeing his shot tipped wide by Leno. Arsenal looked to attack from the cleared corner, with Lacazette making a run from the halfway line only to see his shot tipped over by Kepa, with Tierney heading over from the resulting corner. A long ball then saw Lacazette through, but again Kepa was on hand to turn the ball around the post.

 

In the 78th minute, Arsenal were awarded a free kick. Nelson's ball in was cleared by Tomori, but only as far as David Luiz. Luiz passed back to Xhaka, who hit a 35 yard ball ahead of Nelson, and Nelson once again pulled a goal back for Arsenal.

 

Arsenal pushed for an equaliser, and in the final minute, Nelson sent a free kick to David Luiz. Luiz's header was intercepted by Willian, who passed to Kovacic. Kovacic searched out Abraham, who took the ball down the right before centering it into the box. Chambers' header was intercepted by Kovacic, who passed to Emerson. Emerson looked to wrap the game up, but his shot was tipped over by Leno.

 

Chelsea came close again in stoppage time, as Abraham fed the ball into the area for Mount, whose shot was tipped behind by a scrambling Leno, who saved Willian's header from the resulting corner. Arsenal's frustrations boiled over in the closing stages, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang being booked for a foul on Azpilicueta, as Chelsea secured a massive victory.

 

Saturday 28 September 2019, 12:30: Barclays Premier League - at The Emirates, London 

Arsenal 2-3 Chelsea (Nelson 51, 78; Abraham 12, 54, Willian 32)

Attendance: 60,432 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Reiss Nelson

 

In his post-match conference, Arteta stated that he was "Angry, not with the result, but with the manner of it." He also said that he "Wasn't at all impressed with how George Spencer conducted himself before the match", and that he "Felt distraught" at losing to a close rival. Spencer, meanwhile, praised Tammy Abraham, calling him "An outstanding footballer and a privilege to work with". On social media, Piers Morgan called Arsenal's defence "A joke".

 

Other results:

 

Friday:

Everton 2-1 Liverpool (Calvert-Lewin 14, Sigurdsson 53; Keïta 53)

 

Saturday

Bournemouth 3-2 Aston Villa (H. Wilson 8, C. Wilson 44, Stacey 65; Samatta 37, Nakamba 90+1)

Burnley 0-0 Watford 

Southampton 2-1 Crystal Palace (Ings 30, Romeu 90+5; Milivojevic pen 25)

Brighton 1-1 Man City (Trossard 85; Otamendi 25, Agüero m/pen 3)

Man Utd 2-0 Sheff Utd (Martial pen 30, 61)

 

Sunday 

Norwich 2-0 Tottenham (Drmic 3, 66)

Newcastle 3-5 Wolves (Saint-Maximin 19, 68, Bentaleb 35; Diogo Jota 25, Coady 40, Jonny 66, Traoré 79, Neves pen 82)

 

Monday 

Leicester 1-1 West Ham (Justin 85; Yarmolenko 8)

 

The Premier League's monthly awards saw Tammy Abraham come third in the Young Player of the Month award, behind Norwich's Max Aarons and winner Reiss Nelson. Meanwhile, Spencer had to settle for third in Manager of the Month, with Carlo Ancelotti taking the award and Pep Guardiola coming second. 

 

League Table:

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Man City       | 7     | 5     | 2     | 0     | 15    | 6     | 9     | 17    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Chelsea        | 7     | 5     | 2     | 0     | 10    | 4     | 6     | 17    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Man Utd        | 7     | 4     | 2     | 1     | 13    | 6     | 7     | 14    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Everton        | 7     | 4     | 2     | 1     | 12    | 8     | 4     | 14    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Wolves         | 7     | 4     | 1     | 2     | 14    | 9     | 5     | 13    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Bournemouth    | 7     | 4     | 0     | 3     | 11    | 6     | 5     | 12    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Liverpool      | 7     | 4     | 0     | 3     | 14    | 10    | 4     | 12    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Norwich        | 7     | 4     | 0     | 3     | 11    | 7     | 4     | 12    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Arsenal        | 7     | 4     | 0     | 3     | 11    | 7     | 4     | 12    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Leicester      | 7     | 3     | 3     | 1     | 10    | 6     | 4     | 12    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Burnley        | 7     | 3     | 2     | 2     | 8     | 5     | 3     | 11    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Tottenham      | 7     | 3     | 1     | 3     | 9     | 12    | -3    | 10    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Southampton    | 7     | 2     | 3     | 2     | 8     | 7     | 1     | 9     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | West Ham       | 7     | 2     | 2     | 3     | 6     | 7     | -1    | 8     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | Aston Villa    | 7     | 2     | 0     | 5     | 6     | 12    | -6    | 6     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | Watford        | 7     | 1     | 2     | 4     | 4     | 7     | -3    | 5     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | Sheff Utd      | 7     | 1     | 2     | 4     | 6     | 14    | -8    | 5     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | Crystal Palace | 7     | 1     | 1     | 5     | 5     | 11    | -6    | 4     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Brighton       | 7     | 1     | 1     | 5     | 6     | 18    | -12   | 4     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 7     | 0     | 0     | 7     | 7     | 24    | -17   | 0     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

 

Edited by Drogba11CFC

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Posted (edited)

Chelsea's first home game in the Champions League group stage saw them face Napoli. The two sides had last met in the Champions League in the Round of 16 in March 2012, where Chelsea had pulled off a spectacular 4-1 victory in extra time to win 5-4 on aggregate. With Kanté suspended, Mason Mount retained his place in midfield. It was a potentially tough game, with Napoli sitting second in Serie A behind Juventus. 

 

Chelsea

Kepa 

Azpilicueta Tomori Rüdiger Emerson 

Jorginho 

Kovacic Mount 

Pulisic Abraham Willian 

Substitutes: Caballero, Christensen, Hudson-Odoi, Giroud, Zouma, Batshuayi 

 

SSC Napoli 

Meret

Di Lorenzo Koulibaly Manolas Rui

Demme

Zielinski Allan 

Callejón Milik Insigne

Substitutes: Ospina, Naksimovic, Politano, Mertens, Lozano, Malcuit, Lobotka

 

Referee: Carlos Del Cerro Grande (ESP)

 

Ils sont les meilleurs

Sie sind die besten 

These are the champions 

 

Die meister 

Die besten 

Les meilleurs équipes

The Champions!

 

In the third minute, Jorginho sprayed the ball first time out left to Emerson, who headed it right to Mount. Mount played the ball right to Kovacic, who passed back to Jorginho. Jorginho searched out Emerson on the left wing, and Emerson swung in a cross to Pulisic, whose shot was blocked by Rui and cleared behind by Demme. The corner from Kovacic was met by the head of Rüdiger, whose header looped safely over the crossbar. 

 

In the fifteenth minute, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Kovacic stepped up, and sent the ball into the side netting. Two minutes later, Willian sent a cross into the area, where Pulisic headed just over. 

 

A minute later, a long ball from Willian found Pulisic, who volleyed just over. 

 

In the 25th minute, Willian sent another ball to the right for Azpilicueta. Azpilicueta got past Mário Rui and centred the ball for Abraham, whose shot was blocked. 

 

In the 29th minute, Kovacic took the ball over the halfway line and moved out wide before passing down the line for Pulisic. Pulisic got by Demme and passed back to Kovacic, whose shot was blocked. The clearance was intercepted by Emerson, who played a smart one-two with Rüdiger before passing to Mount. Mount moved the ball on to Willian, who played a one-two with Emerson before getting into the area and delivering a cross to Pulisic, who volleyed the ball into the net to give Chelsea the lead.

 

Ten minutes later, Kovacic played a pass forward to Abraham, who passed to Pulisic. Pulisic had a crack, which Meret did well to tip away. 

 

The second half started as the first had finished, with Jorginho spraying the ball to Emerson on the left. Emerson looked to put a cross in, but the ball was deflected behind.

 

The second half was relatively quiet compared to the first, but Chelsea won another corner in the 79th minute. The initial ball was cleared but only as far as Mount, whose shot was saved by Meret.

 

A minute later, Azpilicueta played a one-two with Pulisic before passing back to Kovacic. Kovacic went for goal, but his shot was saved by Meret. 

 

Reece James replaced a tiring Emerson and with six minutes left, Willian got down the left before sending in a cross. The cross was met by Giroud, whose header was saved by Meret. 

 

Napoli forced a string of corners in stoppage time, but Chelsea held on to record a deserved win. 

 

Tuesday 1 October 2019, 20:00: UEFA Champions League Group G - at Stamford Bridge, London 

Chelsea 1-0 SSC Napoli (Pulisic 29)

Attendance: 39,788 (238 away)

Man of the Match: Jorginho 

 

Group Table:

| Pos   | Inf   | Team                | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st   |       | Chelsea             | ENG   | 2     | 2     | 0     | 0     | 4     | 1     | 3     | 6     | 
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd   |       | Bayer 04 Leverkusen | GER   | 2     | 1     | 1     | 0     | 8     | 2     | 6     | 4     | 
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd   |       | SSC Napoli          | ITA   | 2     | 0     | 1     | 1     | 2     | 3     | -1    | 1     | 
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th   |       | Slavia Prague       | CZE   | 2     | 0     | 0     | 2     | 1     | 9     | -8    | 0     | 
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

Other Results:

Group A: FC Porto 4-0 RB Leipzig (Telles pen 2, Otávio 21, Marega 49, Díaz 54), Valencia 0-0 Zenit (Dzyuba m/pen 45+1)

Group B: Atalanta 2-1 Ajax (Zapata 80, Castagne 88; Neres 29), Barcelona 5-0 FC Copenhagen (Dembélé 42, 69, Griezmann 45+1, Rakitic 63, Suárez 90+1)

Group C: Club Brugge 1-1 Lokomotiv Moscow (Okereke 86; Miranchuk 27), Real Madrid 2-1 Liverpool (Benzema 18, 90+2; Fabinho pen 13)

Group D: PSG 0-0 Benfica, Tottenham 5-0 KRC Genk (Son 3, Kane 19, 22, 36, 47)

Group E: Juventus 1-1 Red Bull Salzburg (Dybala 13, Ronaldo m/pen 41; Vázquez 64), Borussia Dortmund 5-1 LOSC Lille (Can 10, Hakimi 19, Haaland pen 44, Hummels 57, Zagadou 81; Ikoné 49)

Group F: Atlético Madrid 1-1 Bayern Munich (Correa 4; Müller 40), Celtic 2-1 Inter Milan (Ntcham 9, Edouard 52; Barella 44)

Group G: Bayer Leverkusen 6-0 Slavia Prague (Bailey 7, Tapsoba pen 55, Havertz 59, Amiri 67, 82, Aránguiz 78; Tvrdik s/o 47)

Group H: Lyon 1-0 Galatasaray (Toko Ekambi 39), Shakhtar 1-3 Man City (Marlos 28; Sterling 15, Agüero 56, B. Silva 68)

 

Europa League:

Group A: Ludogorets 1-4 Arsenal (Tonev 6; Torreira 5, Lacazette 25, 27, Aubameyang pen 45+1)

Group C: Rennes 0-3 Man Utd (Ighalo 15, Pogba 45, Fernandes 70)

Group D: Astana 0-0 Rangers 

Group I: Olexandriya 0-3 Wolves (Diogo Jota 33, Coady 54, Neves 56)

Edited by Drogba11CFC

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Chelsea faced Burnley just before the next international break. The Clarets sat in mid-table, but had not been beaten at Stamford Bridge since losing 3-0 in August 2016, after which they'd recorded a 3-2 victory on the opening day of the following season and a 2-2 draw in April 2019.

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

James Tomori Christensen Azpilicueta 

Jorginho 

Kovacic Mount 

Pulisic Abraham Hudson-Odoi 

 

Substitutes: Caballero, Rüdiger, Kanté, Giroud, Emerson, Willian, Batshuayi 

 

Burnley 

Pope 

Long Gibson Mee Taylor 

Rodriguez Westwood Cork McNeil 

Hendrick 

Wood 

 

Substitutes: Hart, Bardsley, Brownhill, Barnes, Lennon, Dunne, Brady 

 

Referee: Peter Bankes

 

The first real chance came in the 11th minute, as Pulisic cut inside with the ball before shooting wide from distance. Burnley went up the other end, with Rodriguez getting past Azpilicueta before having a shot which Kepa did well to turn around the post. The resulting corner saw Cork's header saved by Kepa. 

 

Burnley then enjoyed a period of pressure, with a cross from Cork being headed clear by Tomori. Jorginho looked to set up a counter, sending Hudson-Odoi away down the left, only for his shot to be blocked. 

 

In the 34th minute, a clearance from Tomori saw Chelsea look to set up a counter. Kovacic hit a long ball forward to Hudson-Odoi, whose shot was tipped over by Pope. Burnley looked to counter, but James won the ball back and passed to Abraham, who fed the ball right to Pulisic. Pulisic got down the right, but was tripped by McNeil. 

 

Kovacic took the resulting free kick and knocked it towards the far post, where Tomori powered a downward header into the net to open his Chelsea account. 

 

Chelsea won a corner three minutes later. Kovacic sent the ball into the area, but Wood got to it first. 

 

Three minutes before half time, Christensen hit the ball forward to Reece James, who passed backwards to Kovacic. Kovacic played a smart one-two with Jorginho before feeding the ball down the right to James. James got to the byline and whipped in a cross to Hudson-Odoi, whose header was saved by Pope. 

 

Chelsea started the second half as they'd finished the first, with a free kick from Kovacic evading everyone 30 seconds in. 

 

In the 52nd minute, a long ball from Kovacic found Pulisic, who passed back to James. James sent a cross in to Abraham, who headed the ball over. 

 

Eight minutes later, Chelsea won a free kick, which James sent wide.

 

Midway through the second half, Kovacic once again found Pulisic on the right. The ball was cleared, but Tomori picked it up and passed to Jorginho. Jorginho passed right to James, who brought Kovacic into play. Kovacic pulled the ball back for Jorginho, who sent just over the bar.

 

Five minutes later, Chelsea won a corner. Abraham got up, but his header went sailing over the crossbar.

 

In the 77th minute, Chelsea won another corner. Kovacic aimed it at the far post, but Abraham was shoved by Brownhill and Peter Bankes blew for a penalty. Jorginho stepped up and stroked the ball home, surely clinching the match for Chelsea.

 

With eight minutes left, Mount played a long ball to Pulisic, who sent a cross towards Willian. Long's clearance struck Gibson, and only a save by Pope prevented an own goal. 

 

Saturday 5 October 2019, 15:00: Barclays Premier League - at Stamford Bridge, London 

Chelsea 2-0 Burnley (Tomori 36, Jorginho pen 78)

Attendance: 41,631 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Mateo Kovacic 

 

Other Results:

 

Friday:

Aston Villa 1-1 Newcastle (El Ghazi 24; Bentaleb pen 78)

 

Saturday:

Crystal Palace 0-2 Bournemouth (Lerma 32, C. Wilson 84)

Sheff Utd 0-1 Leicester (Basham s/o 51; Evans 23)

West Ham 0-0 Southampton 

Man City 3-0 Everton (Agüero 24, Fernandinho 27, Sterling 55, Agüero m/pen 18; Sigurdsson s/o 49)

Liverpool 5-0 Norwich (Salah 40, 66, Origi 43, 50, Wijnaldum 90+3)

 

Sunday:

Tottenham 0-0 Man Utd 

Wolves 6-0 Brighton (Traoré 11, 17, 82, Jiménez 15, Doherty 44, Diogo Jota 45)

Watford 0-2 Arsenal (Özil 51, 90+4)

 

League Table:

| Pos   | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st   |       | Man City       | 8     | 6     | 2     | 0     | 18    | 6     | 12    | 20    |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd   |       | Chelsea        | 8     | 6     | 2     | 0     | 12    | 4     | 8     | 20    |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd   |       | Wolves         | 8     | 5     | 1     | 2     | 20    | 9     | 11    | 16    |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th   |       | Liverpool      | 8     | 5     | 0     | 3     | 19    | 10    | 9     | 15    |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th   |       | Man Utd        | 8     | 4     | 3     | 1     | 13    | 6     | 7     | 15    |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th   |       | Bournemouth    | 8     | 5     | 0     | 3     | 13    | 6     | 7     | 15    |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th   |       | Arsenal        | 8     | 5     | 0     | 3     | 13    | 7     | 6     | 15    | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th   |       | Leicester      | 8     | 4     | 3     | 1     | 11    | 6     | 5     | 15    |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th   |       | Everton        | 8     | 4     | 2     | 2     | 12    | 11    | 1     | 14    | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th  |       | Norwich        | 8     | 4     | 0     | 4     | 11    | 12    | -1    | 12    |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th  |       | Burnley        | 8     | 3     | 2     | 3     | 8     | 7     | 1     | 11    |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th  |       | Tottenham      | 8     | 3     | 2     | 3     | 9     | 12    | -3    | 11    |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th  |       | Southampton    | 8     | 2     | 4     | 2     | 8     | 7     | 1     | 10    |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th  |       | West Ham       | 8     | 2     | 3     | 3     | 6     | 7     | -1    | 9     |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th  |       | Aston Villa    | 8     | 2     | 1     | 5     | 7     | 13    | -6    | 7     |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th  |       | Watford        | 8     | 1     | 2     | 5     | 4     | 9     | -5    | 5     |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th  |       | Sheff Utd      | 8     | 1     | 2     | 5     | 6     | 15    | -9    | 5     |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th  |       | Crystal Palace | 8     | 1     | 1     | 6     | 5     | 13    | -8    | 4     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th  |       | Brighton       | 8     | 1     | 1     | 6     | 6     | 24    | -18   | 4     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th  |       | Newcastle      | 8     | 0     | 1     | 7     | 8     | 25    | -17   | 1     |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

 

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Posted (edited)

Chelsea's next match took them to the King Power Stadium to face Leicester. The 17:30 kick off time wasn't ideal from Spencer's point of view with the away match against Leverkusen to follow, but this ended up having an unexpected advantage; Manchester City's defeat at The Emirates in the lunchtime kickoff meant that Chelsea would go top if they avoided defeat.

 

Leicester City 

Schmeichel 

Pereira Morgan Evans Chilwell

Ndidi

Tielemans Choudhury

Maddison 

Iheanacho Vardy

Substitutes: Ward, Bennett, Praet, Pérez, Albrighton, Justin, Gray

 

Chelsea 

Kepa

James Tomori Christensen Azpilicueta 

Kanté 

Kovacic Mount 

Pulisic Abraham Hudson-Odoi 

Substitutes: Caballero, Rüdiger, Willian, Giroud, Zouma, Jorginho, Pedro 

 

Referee: Mike Dean 

 

Leicester looked to attack from the start, with Pereira being denied by a superb sliding tackle from Christensen.

 

In the seventh minute, a long throw by Kepa was headed on by Kovacic to Abraham, who fed the ball right to Pulisic. Pulisic got to the edge of the box before being tackled by Choudary, who passed to Chilwell. Chilwell passed to Ndidi, whose pass was intercepted by Pulisic. Schmeichel came out to challenge him, but Pulisic fired the ball into the net from an acute angle to give Chelsea the lead. 

 

Three minutes later, a clearance from Reece James was intercepted by former Man Utd defender Jonny Evans. Evans' header found Chilwell, who passed right to Tielemans. Tielemans led Iheanacho onto the ball, and Iheanacho played a defence-splitting pass to Vardy, who slotted the ball past Kepa with all the time in the world. 

 

Leicester now looked to go ahead, and in the 24th minute, Maddison played in Vardy, who got in behind the defence only to see his shot diverted by Kepa. 

 

Ten minutes later, Azpilicueta was booked for a foul on Pereira.

 

In the 35th minute, a ball from Reece James was intercepted by Maddison, who headed the ball down for Choudary. Choudary passed back to Maddison, who passed to Tielemans. Tielemans passed to Ndidi, who played a long ball forward to Vardy. Vardy hit a hopeful looking shot, which soared past Kepa into the net. However, Vardy had been offside, and the goal was ruled out by VAR. Buoyed by this, Chelsea went up the other end, with Hudson-Odoi hitting the side netting. 

 

In the 38th minute, Azpilicueta played a cross-field ball to Pulisic, who ran deep into the Leicester half before being tackled by Choudary. James collected the loose ball, and played it to Mount, who hit a one touch pass ahead of Hudson-Odoi. Hudson-Odoi controlled the ball, before hitting a shot from the edge of the box which crashed in off the crossbar to score his first Premier League goal. 

 

Three minutes later, Morgan lost the ball to Abraham, who crossed into the box. Pulisic powered a header at goal, which was saved by Schmeichel.

 

In the 42nd minute, Pulisic crossed to Hudson-Odoi, whose shot was saved by Schmeichel. 

 

A minute into the second half, Andreas Christensen received a yellow card. 

 

In the 59th minute, a long ball from Vardy found Maddison, who passed to Iheanacho. Iheanacho went for goal, but his shot was saved by Kepa.

 

Chelsea would make Leicester regret that miss. Four minutes later, a throw-in by Azpilicueta found Mount. Mount played the ball left to Azpilicueta, who passed back to Kanté. Kanté played the ball forward to Mount, who went for the return pass. Kanté then drove the ball ahead of James, who controlled it in the box before firing it across the stranded Schmeichel to open his Chelsea account and double Chelsea's lead. 

 

Leicester tried to get back into the game, with Iheanacho forcing a save from Kepa in the 65th minute. Choudary then went close, also forcing a save from Kepa. Leicester then made their first change, replacing Chilwell with James Justin. 

 

In the 72nd minute, Chelsea won a corner. Kovacic sent the ball over to Abraham, whose header hit the post and was cleared by Iheanacho. Three minutes later, a tiring Reece James was replaced by Rüdiger, whilst Ryan Bennett replaced Wes Morgan for Leicester. 

 

With 12 minutes left, Jonny Evans missed a header and Abraham got onto the loose ball, sending a cross to Hudson-Odoi. Hudson-Odoi looked to double his tally, but his shot was saved by Schmeichel. 

 

With ten minutes left, a Leicester corner was cleared by Rüdiger to Hudson-Odoi, who took off into the Leicester half before passing back to Azpilicueta, who passed to Kovacic. Kovacic looked to find Abraham, who passed to Pulisic. Pulisic then fed in Abraham, whose shot for the top corner barely missed the target. At this point, many of the Leicester fans decided they'd had enough, and started heading for the exits. 

 

Chelsea continued their search for a fourth, and with eight minutes left a shot from Pulisic struck the side netting, before Hudson-Odoi was replaced by Pedro. 

 

With a minute left, a crashing long range drive from Justin went horribly wide before Jorginho came on for Mount. Stoppage time passed without incident, with a chorus of "We're top of the League" emanating from the away end. 

 

Saturday 19 October 2019, 17:30: Barclays Premier League - at King Power Stadium, Leicester 

Leicester City 1-3 Chelsea (Vardy 10; Pulisic 7, Hudson-Odoi 38, James 63)

Attendance: 32,312 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Christian Pulisic 

 

Spencer was delighted with the result, telling Sky Sports that "We did everything we set out to do and proved to be by far the better team."

 

Other results:

 

Friday:

Bournemouth 4-3 Watford (Ibe 6, Billing 11, Solanke 43, Mepham 55, Billing s/o 83; Kabassie 13, Pereyra pen 26, Welbeck 46)

 

Saturday:

Arsenal 2-1 Man City (Pépé 56, Lacazette 66; Cancelo 71)

Brighton 4-0 West Ham (Trossard pen 17, Bernardo 33, Alzate 34, Montoya 79)

Burnley 2-2 Aston Villa (Wood pen 45+2, Reina og 88; McGinn 20, El Ghazi 63, McGinn s/o 57)

Man Utd 3-0 Crystal Palace (Martial pen 29, James 80, Lingard 90+3; Schlupp s/o 82)

Newcastle 1-4 Liverpool (Lazaro 1; Firmino 2, 49, Salah 7, Mané 87)

 

Sunday:

Everton 0-0 Tottenham 

Norwich 1-0 Wolves (Drmic 16)

 

Monday:

Southampton 0-1 Sheff Utd (Fleck 87)

 

League Table:

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Chelsea        | 9     | 7     | 2     | 0     | 15    | 5     | 10    | 23    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Man City       | 9     | 6     | 2     | 1     | 19    | 8     | 11    | 20    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Liverpool      | 9     | 6     | 0     | 3     | 23    | 11    | 12    | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Man Utd        | 9     | 5     | 3     | 1     | 16    | 6     | 10    | 18    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Bournemouth    | 9     | 6     | 0     | 3     | 17    | 9     | 8     | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Arsenal        | 9     | 6     | 0     | 3     | 15    | 8     | 7     | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Wolves         | 9     | 5     | 1     | 3     | 20    | 10    | 10    | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Leicester      | 9     | 4     | 3     | 2     | 12    | 9     | 3     | 15    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Everton        | 9     | 4     | 3     | 2     | 12    | 11    | 1     | 15    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Norwich        | 9     | 5     | 0     | 4     | 12    | 12    | 0     | 15    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Burnley        | 9     | 3     | 3     | 3     | 10    | 9     | 1     | 12    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Tottenham      | 9     | 3     | 3     | 3     | 9     | 12    | -3    | 12    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Southampton    | 9     | 2     | 4     | 3     | 8     | 8     | 0     | 10    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | West Ham       | 9     | 2     | 3     | 4     | 6     | 11    | -5    | 9     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | Aston Villa    | 9     | 2     | 2     | 5     | 9     | 15    | -6    | 8     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | Sheff Utd      | 9     | 2     | 2     | 5     | 7     | 15    | -8    | 8     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | Brighton       | 9     | 2     | 1     | 6     | 10    | 24    | -14   | 7     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | Watford        | 9     | 1     | 2     | 6     | 7     | 13    | -6    | 5     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Crystal Palace | 9     | 1     | 1     | 7     | 5     | 16    | -11   | 4     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 9     | 0     | 1     | 8     | 9     | 29    | -20   | 1     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 





 

Edited by Drogba11CFC

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Chelsea's next Champions League group game was away to Bayer Leverkusen, who sat 9th in the Bundesliga. Leverkusen were a far cry from the side that had eliminated Liverpool and Manchester United on the way to the final in 2002. However, they were still a potential hazard, boasting Leon Bailey and Kai Havertz. In addition, the two sides had met before in the 2011-12 Champions League, with both sides qualifying from the group ahead of Valencia. Spencer opted to rest Kovacic, who was not fully fit. 

 

Bayer Leverkusen 

Hadrecký

Bender Tah Tapsoba Wendell

Palacios

Amiri Havertz 

Bailey Volland Diaby

Substitutes: Özcan, Bender, Aránguiz, Alario, Bellarabi, Dragovic, Demirbay

 

Chelsea

Kepa 

Azpilicueta Rüdiger Christensen Emerson 

Jorginho 

Kanté Mount 

Pulisic Abraham Willian 

Substitutes: Caballero, Pedro, Kovacic, Giroud, Hudson-Odoi, James, Tomori 

 

Referee: Jesús Gil Manzano (ESP)

 

Ils sont les meilleurs

Sie sind die besten

These are the champions

 

Die meister

Die besten

Les grandes équipes

The Champions!

 

George Spencer had said in the previous day's press conference that he wanted to take control of the group and in the third minute, Emerson found Willian with a header. Willian passed to Jorginho, who searched out Pulisic. Pulisic nodded the ball on, and Abraham ran onto it before hitting a first time shot across Hadrecký to set Chelsea off to a fantastic start. 

 

In the fifteenth minute, Chelsea won a corner. Mount whipped it in to Abraham, who headed it across goal for Pulisic to head home. As Chelsea celebrated, Simon Brotherton on BT Sport exclaimed that "Bayer's gameplan is being undone; can they salvage anything from this match?"

 

Ten minutes later, a throw-in by Azpilicueta found Abraham, who played it back to Azpilicueta. Azpilicueta looked for Kanté, who floated it in to the far post from the right. Emerson got to the loose ball and had a shot which was charged down by Lars Bender. Mount was then skinned by Bailey, who took the ball into the area before Mount put in a perfect sliding tackle. 

 

In the 28th minute, Lars Bender was booked for a foul on Pulisic. Willian sent in the free kick, which was headed clear by Bender. Rüdiger recovered the ball and passed to Emerson, who played a first time ball to Willian. Willian passed back to Jorginho, who exchanged passes with Mount and played the ball to Kanté's feet. Kanté passed back to Jorginho, who found Mount. Mount played the ball to Abraham, who passed to Willian, and Willian fed the ball out left to Emerson. Emerson curled a cross to the near post, where Abraham saw his header saved by Hadrecký. 

 

Two minutes later, a long ball from Palacios found Bailey, whose first time shot was turned behind by Kepa, who claimed the resulting corner. 

 

In the 33rd minute, Kanté passed left to Mount, who moved the ball right for Azpilicueta. Azpilicueta played the ball down the line for Pulisic, who ghosted past Wendell and got into the area before being stopped by Palacios. Palacios, however, was adjudged by VAR to have held back Pulisic, and Jesús Gil Manzano awarded Chelsea a penalty. Jorginho stepped up, but his spot kick struck the post.

 

Just before half time, Azpilicueta sent a cross in from the right to Abraham, whose header went over the bar. 

 

Seven minutes into the second half, Leverkusen were awarded a free kick. Amiri's ball in was met by the head of Tapsoba, whose effort hit the bar before Christensen hacked it clear. The resulting corner found Volland, whose header went sailing over the bar. 

 

Chelsea were dealt a major blow in the 63rd minute, as Jorginho was forced off with a groin strain. Kovacic came on to replace him, with Kanté moving behind him and Mount. 

 

In the 68th minute, Chelsea won a corner. Kovacic's ball was met by the head of Mount, whose header was saved by Hadrecký. Kovacic sent the ball back into the area, where Christensen headed the ball over. 

 

In the 71st minute, Bailey took the ball into the Chelsea half, cutting inside into the area before being tripped by Kovacic. Jesús Gil Manzano blew for a foul before consulting the VAR monitor to determine whether it was inside the area. Having reviewed it, he gave a penalty, and gave Kovacic a yellow card. Aránguiz stepped up, and sent the ball into the bottom corner despite Kepa guessing correctly. 

 

This set up a potentially nervous last eighteen minutes for Chelsea, but Kepa found himself with little to do. In the final minute of normal time, Pedro, on as a substitute for Pulisic, passed back to Kovacic. Kovacic looked to find Willian with a searching pass, but he overhit it. Willian recovered the ball and passed back to Emerson, who passed into the area for Willian. Willian whipped a cross in for Abraham, whose volley was blocked by Tapsoba before Bailey was replaced by Alario.

 

In the fourth minute of stoppage time, Chelsea won a corner. Kovacic aimed for Willian, whose header went sailing over the crossbar. Chelsea then survived a last gasp onslaught from the home side, including a late header from Tah, to make it three wins out of three and take control of the group. 

 

Tuesday 22 October 2019, 20:00: UEFA Champions League Group G - at BayArena, Leverkusen 

Bayer Leverkusen 1-2 Chelsea (Aránguiz pen 73; Abraham 3, Pulisic 15, Jorginho m/pen 34)

Attendance: 29,625 (2,625 away)

Man of the Match: Tammy Abraham 

 

"We got lucky there," Spencer said in the dressing room after the match, "We should have been out of sight and we let them back into it. If we do that against Liverpool, or PSG, or Real Madrid or Barcelona, they'll take us apart."

The players nodded, indicating that they understood. 

"That said," Spencer continued, "The way we started was outstanding, and another win should be enough to see us into the knockout stage."

 

The bad news was, however, that Jorginho's groin strain meant that he would be a doubt for the return game at Stamford Bridge and the following trip to Anfield.

 

Group Tables:

| Pos | Inf   | Team       | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st |       | FC Porto   | POR   | 3     | 1     | 2     | 0     | 6     | 2     | 4     | 5     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | RB Leipzig | GER   | 3     | 1     | 1     | 1     | 3     | 4     | -1    | 4     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Valencia   | ESP   | 3     | 0     | 3     | 0     | 2     | 2     | 0     | 3     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Zenit      | RUS   | 3     | 0     | 2     | 1     | 0     | 3     | -3    | 2     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team          | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st |       | Barcelona     | ESP   | 3     | 3     | 0     | 0     | 12    | 2     | 10    | 9     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Atalanta      | ITA   | 3     | 2     | 0     | 1     | 5     | 6     | -1    | 6     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Ajax          | NED   | 3     | 1     | 0     | 2     | 4     | 4     | 0     | 3     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | FC Copenhagen | DEN   | 3     | 0     | 0     | 3     | 0     | 9     | -9    | 0     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team             | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st |       | Real Madrid      | ESP   | 3     | 3     | 0     | 0     | 7     | 1     | 6     | 9     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Liverpool        | ENG   | 3     | 2     | 0     | 1     | 9     | 2     | 7     | 6     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Lokomotiv Moscow | RUS   | 3     | 0     | 1     | 2     | 1     | 9     | -8    | 1     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Club Brugge KV   | BEL   | 3     | 0     | 1     | 2     | 1     | 6     | -5    | 1     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

| Pos | Inf   | Team       | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st |       | Paris SG   | FRA   | 3     | 2     | 1     | 0     | 5     | 1     | 4     | 7     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | SL Benfica | POR   | 3     | 2     | 1     | 0     | 5     | 1     | 4     | 7     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Tottenham  | ENG   | 3     | 1     | 0     | 2     | 7     | 4     | 3     | 3     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | KRC Genk   | BEL   | 3     | 0     | 0     | 3     | 0     | 11    | -11   | 0     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

| Pos | Inf   | Team                 | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st |       | Borussia Dortmund    | GER   | 3     | 2     | 0     | 1     | 7     | 3     | 4     | 6     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Juventus             | ITA   | 3     | 1     | 2     | 0     | 5     | 4     | 1     | 5     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | LOSC Lille           | FRA   | 3     | 0     | 2     | 1     | 5     | 9     | -4    | 2     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | FC Red Bull Salzburg | AUT   | 3     | 0     | 2     | 1     | 3     | 4     | -1    | 2     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team               | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st |       | FC Bayern Munich   | GER   | 3     | 2     | 1     | 0     | 7     | 2     | 5     | 7     | 
| ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Celtic             | SCO   | 3     | 2     | 0     | 1     | 5     | 6     | -1    | 6     | 
| ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Inter Milan        | ITA   | 3     | 1     | 0     | 2     | 2     | 4     | -2    | 3     | 
| ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Atlético Madrid    | ESP   | 3     | 0     | 1     | 2     | 2     | 4     | -2    | 1     | 
| ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team                | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st |       | Chelsea             | ENG   | 3     | 3     | 0     | 0     | 6     | 2     | 4     | 9     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Bayer 04 Leverkusen | GER   | 3     | 1     | 1     | 1     | 9     | 4     | 5     | 4     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | SSC Napoli          | ITA   | 3     | 1     | 1     | 1     | 3     | 3     | 0     | 4     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Slavia Prague       | CZE   | 3     | 0     | 0     | 3     | 1     | 10    | -9    | 0     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team        | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st |       | Man City    | ENG   | 3     | 2     | 1     | 0     | 9     | 4     | 5     | 7     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Lyon        | FRA   | 3     | 2     | 0     | 1     | 2     | 3     | -1    | 6     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Galatasaray | TUR   | 3     | 1     | 1     | 1     | 5     | 4     | 1     | 4     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Shakhtar    | UKR   | 3     | 0     | 0     | 3     | 1     | 6     | -5    | 0     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

Other results:

 

Champions League 

Group A: FC Porto 2-2 Valencia (Otávio 10, Marega 86; Soler 52, Coquelin 67), Zenit 0-3 RB Leipzig (Werner pen 7, 10, 15)

Group B: Ajax 2-0 FC Copenhagen (Huntelaar pen 9, 40), Barcelona 5-1 Atalanta (Rakitic 6, Messi pen 21, pen 89, Puig 72, Fati 90; Muriel 83)

Group C: Club Brugge 0-2 Real Madrid (Bale 1, Hazard pen 18), Liverpool 5-0 Lokomotiv Moscow (Alexander-Arnold 34, 57, Mané 44, Salah 45, Milner pen 78)

Group D: Benfica 3-0 KRC Genk (Vinicius 10, 62, Seferovic 89), Tottenham 1-2 PSG (Aurier 67; Mbappé 19, Neymar 62)

Group E: Borussia Dortmund 0-1 Juventus (Dybala 33, Danilo s/o 90+2), Red Bull Salzburg 1-1 LOSC Lille (Hee-Chan 62, Wöber m/pen 35; Osimhen 27)

Group F: Celtic 2-1 Atlético Madrid (McGregor 46, Elyounoussi 74; Partey 5), Bayern Munich 2-0 Inter Milan (Tolisso 37, Perisic 65)

Group G: Napoli 1-0 Slavia Prague (Insigne pen 51)

Group H: Galatasaray 3-3 Man City (Lemina 11, Seri 32, Falcao 45+3; Agüero 34, 44, 90+5), Shakhtar 0-1 Lyon (Dembélé 31)

 

Europa League:

Group A: Arsenal 3-0 AEK Athens (Lacazette 3, Aubameyang 9, Nelson 14; Sarrigiannis s/o 86)

Group C: Man Utd 4-1 Jablonec (Rashford pen 17, 88, Greenwood 20, 57; Kubik 35, Sedlacek s/o 90+3)

Group D: Wolfsburg 1-0 Rangers (Weghorst 33)

Group I: Beşiktaş 2-1 Wolves (Hutchinson 83, Caner Erkin 90+1, Caner Erkin s/o 90+5; Hutchinson og 86)


 

Edited by Drogba11CFC

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Chelsea hosted struggling Brighton in their next match. The Seagulls had one of the leakiest defences in the league, and Spencer wanted to take full advantage. The visitors had, however, beaten West Ham 4-0 the previous weekend. 

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

James Tomori Christensen Azpilicueta 

Kovacic 

Kanté Mount 

Pulisic Abraham Hudson-Odoi 

Substitutes: Caballero, Rüdiger, Willian, Giroud, Emerson, Barkley, Batshuayi 

 

Brighton 

Ryan 

Montoya Duffy Dunk Burn

Jahanbakhsh Bernardo Mooy Trossard 

Groß

Maupay

Substitutes: Button, Webster, Mac Allister, Connolly, Alzate, Schelotto, Bissouma

 

Referee: André Marriner 

 

Chelsea were after a good start and what they got couldn't have been better. With 15 seconds gone, Reece James fed the ball down the line to Pulisic, who got into the area before being tripped by Burn. Mason Mount stepped up, and sent the ball into the bottom corner to set Chelsea off to a flying start and open his Chelsea account. 

 

In the fourteenth minute, Azpilicueta threw the ball in to Kovacic, who passed right to Kanté. Kanté had a go from the edge of the box, but his shot didn't trouble Ryan.

 

Much of the half was uneventful, but in the 38th minute, Chelsea won a corner. The ball was cleared by Dunk, but Brighton's attempt to set up a counter attack was snuffed out by Kanté, who exchanged passes with Kovacic before finding Christensen. Christensen played a long ball to Azpilicueta, who looked for Mount. Mount passed to the feet of Kovacic, who moved the ball onto Kanté. Kanté then played a one-two with Pulisic, before passing back to Kovacic. Kovacic weighted a 30 yard pass down the left for Azpilicueta, who found Hudson-Odoi inside the penalty area, and Hudson-Odoi's shot was tipped over by Mathew Ryan. 

 

In the 41st minute, a long ball was intercepted by Christensen, who moved it onto Azpilicueta. Azpilicueta laid it forward first time to Hudson-Odoi, who cut inside before driving the ball ahead of James. James kept the ball in play and aimed for the far post, where Hudson-Odoi headed home to double Chelsea's lead. 

 

Four minutes into the second half, Brighton were awarded a free kick. Groß went for goal, but Kepa had no problem saving it. Chelsea then went to the other end, with Kanté seeing a shot saved by Ryan. Neil Maupay then tried his luck, sending a shot considerably wide. 

 

In the 55th minute, a long ball by Azpilicueta found Pulisic, who cut inside before sending a shot just wide. A minute later, Hudson-Odoi passed back to Mount, whose shot was saved by Ryan. 

 

With just under 20 minutes left, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. James curled the ball around the wall, only for Ryan to save it. The rebound, however, fell to Abraham, who steered it into an empty net. 

 

Ten minutes later, Christensen fed in James, who got into the area before having a shot which was tipped over by Ryan.

 

In the 82nd minute, a close-range header from Barkley was saved by Ryan. 

 

In stoppage time, Chelsea were awarded a free kick, which James sent at the wall. Hudson-Odoi got to the rebound, only to shoot high and wide. Nonetheless, there had only been one team in it, and Chelsea secured a dominant win.

 

Saturday 26 October, 15:00: Barclays Premier League - at Stamford Bridge, London 

Chelsea 3-0 Brighton & Hove Albion (Mount pen 2, Hudson-Odoi 41, Abraham 71)

Attendance: 41,631 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Reece James 

 

Other results: 

 

Friday 

Aston Villa 2-1 Leicester (Mings 28, Samatta 61; Vardy 45+3)

 

Saturday 

Crystal Palace 0-2 Norwich (Sakho s/o 90+3; Pukki 1, Zimmermann 76)

Sheff Utd 1-0 Everton (Egan 46)

Watford 0-2 Southampton (Romeu 27, 63)

Man City 4-1 Newcastle (Sterling 1, B. Silva 7, De Bruyne 46, Foden 90+2; Clark 48)

 

Sunday 

Wolves 0-1 Arsenal (Özil 90+1)

Tottenham 2-1 Bournemouth (Kane 57, 90+5; C. Wilson 87)

Liverpool 1-1 Man Utd (Mané 86; Martial 89)

 

Monday 

West Ham 1-1 Burnley (Haller 24; McNeil 59)

 

League table:

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Chelsea        | 10    | 8     | 2     | 0     | 18    | 5     | 13    | 26    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Man City       | 10    | 7     | 2     | 1     | 23    | 9     | 14    | 23    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Arsenal        | 10    | 7     | 0     | 3     | 16    | 8     | 8     | 21    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Liverpool      | 10    | 6     | 1     | 3     | 24    | 12    | 12    | 19    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Man Utd        | 10    | 5     | 4     | 1     | 17    | 7     | 10    | 19    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Bournemouth    | 10    | 6     | 0     | 4     | 18    | 11    | 7     | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Norwich        | 10    | 6     | 0     | 4     | 14    | 12    | 2     | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Wolves         | 10    | 5     | 1     | 4     | 20    | 11    | 9     | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Leicester      | 10    | 4     | 3     | 3     | 13    | 11    | 2     | 15    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Everton        | 10    | 4     | 3     | 3     | 12    | 12    | 0     | 15    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Tottenham      | 10    | 4     | 3     | 3     | 11    | 13    | -2    | 15    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Southampton    | 10    | 3     | 4     | 3     | 10    | 8     | 2     | 13    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Burnley        | 10    | 3     | 4     | 3     | 11    | 10    | 1     | 13    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | Aston Villa    | 10    | 3     | 2     | 5     | 11    | 16    | -5    | 11    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | Sheff Utd      | 10    | 3     | 2     | 5     | 8     | 15    | -7    | 11    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | West Ham       | 10    | 2     | 4     | 4     | 7     | 12    | -5    | 10    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | Brighton       | 10    | 2     | 1     | 7     | 10    | 27    | -17   | 7     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | Watford        | 10    | 1     | 2     | 7     | 7     | 15    | -8    | 5     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Crystal Palace | 10    | 1     | 1     | 8     | 5     | 18    | -13   | 4     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 10    | 0     | 1     | 9     | 10    | 33    | -23   | 1     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

 

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The fourth round of the Carabao Cup saw Chelsea travel to Molineux to face high-flying Wolves. Spencer heavily rotated his side, giving game time to Zouma, Barkley, Alonso and Batshuayi. His hand was forced; Kovacic was out for up to two weeks, having pulled an abdominal muscle while lifting weights, while Kanté had suffered a bruised shin in training.

 

Wolves 

Ruddy 

Boly Coady Kilman

Traoré Moutinho Gibbs-White Vinagre

Podence Neto Jota

Substitutes: Patricio, Jonny, Loiodice, Campana, Shabani, Buur, Corbeanu

 

Chelsea 

Caballero 

James Tomori Zouma Alonso 

Christensen 

Barkley Mount 

Pulisic Batshuayi Hudson-Odoi 

Substitutes: Kepa, Rüdiger, Willian, Giroud, Emerson, Kanté, Abraham 

 

Referee: Craig Pawson 

 

In the eleventh minute, Wolves were awarded a free kick. Moutinho stepped up and sent it into the area, where Conor Coady powered a looping header past Caballero and into the net.

 

Eleven minutes later, Hudson-Odoi sent a cross field ball to Pulisic, who cut inside before hitting the side netting from an acute angle. Wolves then went to the other end, only for Traoré to be stopped by an expert sliding tackle from Marcos Alonso. Chelsea then countered, and Hudson-Odoi beat Podence and Traoré before seeing his shot saved by Ruddy.

 

In the 26th minute, Wolves suffered a blow when Vinagre suffered an injury tackling Pulisic and was forced off, with Jonny replacing him. Chelsea suffered an injury blow themselves in the 31st minute, as Marcos Alonso suffered an ankle injury tackling Podence and was also forced off, being replaced by Emerson. 

 

In first half stoppage time, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Mount sent it into the area for Tomori, who headed just inches wide. 

 

Chelsea looked to come out fighting in the second half, and in the 49th minute they won a corner. Mount's ball found Batshuayi, whose shot was saved by Ruddy.

 

A minute later, however, Wolves were awarded another free kick. Moutinho stepped up and once again, found the head of Coady, who headed the ball over Caballero and into the net. Having not been behind previously that season, Chelsea now found themselves two goals behind.

 

In the 52nd minute, a sliding tackle from James stopped Gibbs-White, and Mount took the ball over the halfway line before passing to Batshuayi. Batshuayi hit the ball 30 yards left to Hudson-Odoi, who cut inside before passing to Mount. Mount swung the ball out left ahead of Emerson, and Emerson saw a shot blocked, as did Batshuayi, who pounced on the rebound. Hudson-Odoi recovered the ball on the edge of the box and passed to James, who let fly from 25 yards with a blockbuster into the top corner to bring Chelsea back into the match. Jonathan Pearce, commentating for Radio 5 Live, exclaimed that "You don't save those!"

 

Wolves looked to restore their two goal advantage, and in the 62nd minute, Diogo Jota got into the Chelsea area before seeing his shot tipped over by Caballero, who claimed the resulting corner. 

 

Six minutes later, Chelsea, now on the front foot, attacked again, with Barkley getting to the edge of the area before passing back to Mount. Mount played a smart one-two with Hudson-Odoi, before spraying the ball out left to Emerson. Emerson sent in a cross to Batshuayi, who headed just over the bar. 

 

In the 70th minute, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Mount stepped up and went for goal, with Ruddy tipping his shot wide. 

 

Wolves were still dangerous, however, and in the 77th minute Jota got past Tomori and into the box before his shot was saved by Caballero. The corner found Coady, whose header was saved by Caballero.

 

With less than a minute left, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Willian, having come on for Pulisic, sent it into the area. Barkley was pushed by Coady, and Craig Pawson pointed to the spot!

 

The responsibility for taking the match to penalties fell to Mason Mount. He stepped up and sent the ball into the bottom corner, nearly taking the net off, to bring Chelsea level from two goals down. 

 

In the fourth minute of stoppage time, Chelsea won a corner, which was headed clear. The final whistle blew seconds later, taking the match to penalties.

 

Chelsea won the toss, and went first. Mason Mount took the first kick, and once again scored. 

 

Morgan Gibbs-White took Wolves' first kick, but he put too much on it and sent it wide. 

 

Andreas Christensen took Chelsea's second, and he buried his as well. 

 

Diogo Jota was next for Wolves, and he scored to get Wolves off the mark. 

 

Michy Batshuayi took Chelsea's third kick, but he struck the post. 

 

Two-goal hero Conor Coady took Wolves' third, and sent it into the bottom corner to level the score. 

 

Willian was next for Chelsea, and he sent Ruddy the wrong way as he placed the ball into the bottom corner. 

 

Daniel Podence was next for Wolves, and he converted to make it 3-3 and effectively put the shootout into sudden death. 

 

Ross Barkley took Chelsea's fifth, and he made no mistake, putting Chelsea at match point.

 

Neto had to score to keep Wolves in the game, but his kick struck the post, and Chelsea booked their place in the quarter final after a dramatic comeback. 

 

Wednesday 30 October 2019, 19:45: Carabao Cup 4th round - at Molineux, Wolverhampton 

Wolverhampton Wanderers 2-2 Chelsea (Coady 11, 51; James 53, Mount pen 90+1) Chelsea win 4-3 on penalties 

Attendance: 15,916 (1,259 away)

Man of the Match: Conor Coady 

 

Spencer was delighted after the match, telling the BBC that "It only goes to show the level of spirit in that dressing room. They refused to be beaten." He also praised Reece James' goal, claiming that it was "Worth the entrance fee alone." Even Nuno Espírito Santo said that "I couldn't help but admire his performance. It was through gritted teeth, but the talent is admirable."

 

The win had come at a cost, however. Christian Pulisic was out for up to three weeks with a damaged foot, meaning that he would miss the matches against Leverkusen and Liverpool, while Marcos Alonso would be out for up to four weeks with damaged ankle ligaments. 

 

Other results:

 

Tuesday 

Brentford 0-1 Crystal Palace (Schlupp 13)

Everton 1-1 Fulham (Richarlison 90+6, Davies s/o 47; Decordova-Reed 63) Everton won 5-4 on penalties)

Leicester 1-1 Macclesfield (Elewa-Ikpakpwu 59; Tracey 25) Leicester won 5-3 on penalties 

Wycombe 2-3 Man Utd (Onyedinma 22, Akinfenwa 25; Linelöf 16, Rashford 42, Greenwood 67)

 

Wednesday 

Arsenal 3-2 Newcastle (Nelson 16, Pépé 37, 44, Chambers s/o 61; Bentaleb pen 17, Longstaff 36)

Bournemouth 2-1 Tottenham (C. Wilson pen 28, Lerma 59; Bergwijn 84)

Millwall 1-2 QPR (Bödvarsson 77; Manning pen 37, Ball 86)

 

The monthly awards saw Chelsea represented. Callum Hudson-Odoi won the Premier League's Young Player of the Month award, which he dedicated to Spencer, with Reece James coming second. Spencer himself retook the Manager of the Month award, ahead of Mikel Arteta and Jürgen Klopp. 

 

The draw for the quarter final of the Carabao Cup took place on Friday morning, and Spencer listened to it in his office at Cobham.

 

"The first ball out," the announcer said, "Is number 2, Queens Park Rangers. They are at home to...number 8, Arsenal."

 

"Number 3, Everton, will play...number 1, AFC Bournemouth."

 

"Number 5, Crystal Palace, are at home to...number 6, Leicester City."

 

"That means that number 7, Chelsea, will play number 4, Manchester United."

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Chelsea returned to league action against Bournemouth. The Cherries had made a bright start to the season, and sat 6th in the league. Chelsea had endured some absolute shockers against Bournemouth in recent years, and Spencer was determined to change that. However, with an injury crisis on his hands, his options were somewhat limited. He did opt to rest Azpilicueta, who would miss the Liverpool game if he was booked.

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

Tomori Rüdiger Christensen Emerson 

Kanté 

Barkley Mount 

Willian Abraham Hudson-Odoi 

Substitutes: Caballero, Azpilicueta, Pedro, Giroud, Zouma, James, Batshuayi 

 

AFC Bournemouth 

Ramsdale

Smith Mepham Cook Kelly Rico

Fraser Lerma Billing King

Wilson 

Substitutes: Boruc, Stacey, Cook, Solanke, Ibe, Simpson, Surman

 

Referee: Andy Madley

 

Chelsea looked to attack from the off and in the sixth minute, a cross from Willian found Barkley, whose header went over the bar. The goal kick saw Hudson-Odoi exchange passes with Emerson before going for glory from the edge of the box, with Ramsdale making a fingertip save to divert the ball over. 

 

In the thirteenth minute, Willian sent the ball back to Kanté. Kanté passed to Hudson-Odoi, who passed to Emerson. Emerson passed back to Kanté, who passed to Mount. Mount passed to Abraham, who passed to Hudson-Odoi, and Hudson-Odoi took a shot which was saved by Ramsdale. 

 

Two minutes later, Bournemouth looked to break, and Joshua King got down the left before being tackled by Willian. 

 

In the twentieth minute, Tomori headed the ball to Barkley. Barkley passed back to Tomori, who moved possession left to Kanté. Kanté played a smart one-two with Mount, before exchanging 0passes with Abraham and feeding the ball left to Mount. Mount passed to Hudson-Odoi, who got past Fraser before passing to Kanté. Kanté sprayed the ball out left to Emerson, who looked for Mount. Mount exchanged passes with Kanté and Hudson-Odoi before hitting a 35 yard ball ahead of Willian, who hit the ball straight at Ramsdale. 

 

In the 28th minute, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Willian stepped up, and saw his shot tipped behind by Ramsdale. 

 

Chelsea won another free kick six minutes later. Emerson stepped up, only for Ramsdale to save again.

 

In the 36th minute, Hudson-Odoi got down the left only to be tackled by Smith. Kanté recovered, and played a one-two with Mount. Mount exchanged passes with Hudson-Odoi, before passing to Kanté, who played it first time to Barkley. Barkley moved the ball right to Tomori, who passed to Kanté. Kanté drove the ball ahead of Emerson, whose shot was saved by Ramsdale. 

 

A minute before half time, Emerson took a throw-in. Hudson-Odoi took over from Abraham, and passed to Emerson. Emerson sprayed the ball out right to Tomori, who sent the ball back to Kanté. Kanté passed to Mount, who passed to Barkley. Barkley searched out Emerson on the left, and Emerson saw a shot blocked. Hudson-Odoi recovered, only to be tackled by Fraser. 

 

In stoppage time, Chelsea were awarded a free kick after Lerma fouled Mount. Willian went for goal, but his effort was saved by Ramsdale. 

 

Six minutes into the second half, Chelsea won a throw-in. Abraham played a smart one-two with Emerson, before seeing a shot blocked. 

 

In the 58th minute, Chelsea won a corner. Hudson-Odoi rose highest, but his header was saved by Ramsdale.

 

In the 61st minute, King was replaced by Jordon Ibe. A minute later, a free kick from Willian headed clear by Mepham. Lerma collected the ball and passed to Callum Wilson, who looked to break. Wilson was tracked by Tomori the whole way and forced into shooting from a tight angle, with Kepa having no problem. 

 

In the 67th minute, Lerma was booked for a foul on Emerson. Willian took the free kick, but his shot went just wide. Three minutes later, Pedro replaced Hudson-Odoi. 

 

With just under 20 minutes left, Chelsea won a corner, as Bournemouth replaced Lerma with Lewis Cook. Emerson's corner was met by Abraham, whose header was saved by Ramsdale. 

 

Two minutes later, a throw-in found Mount, who passed back to Emerson. Emerson sent the ball back to Kanté, who played it to Tomori. Tomori passed back to Rüdiger, who hit a first time ball to Barkley. Barkley passed first time to Kanté, who looked for Emerson on the left. Emerson looked for Pedro, whose tame shot was saved by Ramsdale.

 

In the 76th minute, Billing intercepted a pass and drove the ball ahead of Wilson. Wilson got into the Chelsea area and went for goal, but his shot was saved by Kepa and cleared. 

 

With just over ten minutes left, Tomori sent a free kick to Mount. Mount exchanged passes with Abraham before passing to Pedro. Pedro passed to Kanté, who looked for Barkley to his right. Barkley moved the ball onto Willian, who played it to Tomori. Tomori passed to Kanté, who brought Mount into play. Mount went for goal, but his shot was cleared. Kanté recovered and found Mount, who played a give and go with Pedro before passing to Pedro. Pedro passed to Kanté, who sprayed the ball left to Emerson. Emerson passed to Kanté, whose aerial pass to Willian was intercepted by Rico. Chelsea then replaced a tiring Tomori with Reece James. 

 

With two minutes left, James intercepted a pass and found Willian, who passed to Kanté. Kanté's shot was blocked by Kelly, but James recovered and passed to Mount. Mount went for goal, but his shot was blocked by Mepham. The final whistle ended a frustrating afternoon for Chelsea, who could have won the game six times over, but had been unable to find their way past a Bournemouth side which had parked the bus. To add insult to injury, Pedro was now sidelined for two weeks with a pulled hamstring.

 

Saturday 2 November 2019, 15:00: Barclays Premier League - at Stamford Bridge, London 

Chelsea 0-0 AFC Bournemouth 

Attendance: 41,628 (2,897 away)

Man of the Match: Mason Mount 

 

Other results:

 

Friday 

Brighton 4-1 Crystal Palace (Montoya 2, 19, Dunk 14, Groß 23; Townsend 70)

 

Saturday:

West Ham 0-4 Liverpool (Firmino 32, 90+4, Salah 48, van Dijk 52)

Everton 2-0 Arsenal (Richarlison 24, Calvert-Lewin 45+1)

Leicester 2-0 Norwich (Chilwell 7, Iheanacho 41)

Sheff Utd 0-1 Tottenham (Kane 90)

Southampton 0-3 Man City (Agüero 20, Gündogan 54, Laporte 86)

 

Sunday 

Aston Villa 2-0 Man Utd (Samatta 23, 36)

Watford 1-0 Wolves (Pereyra pen 41)

 

Monday 

Burnley 3-2 Newcastle (Cork 13, Barnes 42, Hendrick 90+3; Bentaleb 25, Joelinton 81)

 

League table:

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Chelsea        | 11    | 8     | 3     | 0     | 18    | 5     | 13    | 27    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Man City       | 11    | 8     | 2     | 1     | 26    | 9     | 17    | 26    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Liverpool      | 11    | 7     | 1     | 3     | 28    | 12    | 16    | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Arsenal        | 11    | 7     | 0     | 4     | 16    | 10    | 6     | 21    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Man Utd        | 11    | 5     | 4     | 2     | 17    | 9     | 8     | 19    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Bournemouth    | 11    | 6     | 1     | 4     | 18    | 11    | 7     | 19    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Leicester      | 11    | 5     | 3     | 3     | 15    | 11    | 4     | 18    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Everton        | 11    | 5     | 3     | 3     | 14    | 12    | 2     | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Norwich        | 11    | 6     | 0     | 5     | 14    | 14    | 0     | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Tottenham      | 11    | 5     | 3     | 3     | 12    | 13    | -1    | 18    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Wolves         | 11    | 5     | 1     | 5     | 20    | 12    | 8     | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Burnley        | 11    | 4     | 4     | 3     | 14    | 12    | 2     | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Aston Villa    | 11    | 4     | 2     | 5     | 13    | 16    | -3    | 14    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | Southampton    | 11    | 3     | 4     | 4     | 10    | 11    | -1    | 13    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | Sheff Utd      | 11    | 3     | 2     | 6     | 8     | 16    | -8    | 11    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | West Ham       | 11    | 2     | 4     | 5     | 7     | 16    | -9    | 10    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | Brighton       | 11    | 3     | 1     | 7     | 14    | 28    | -14   | 10    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | Watford        | 11    | 2     | 2     | 7     | 8     | 15    | -7    | 8     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Crystal Palace | 11    | 1     | 1     | 9     | 6     | 22    | -16   | 4     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 11    | 0     | 1     | 10    | 12    | 36    | -24   | 1     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

 

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Chelsea faced Bayer Leverkusen at Stamford Bridge knowing that victory would see them qualify for the knockout stage. However, the Blues were still without Jorginho and Pulisic, whilst Kovacic was only fit enough for the bench. Chelsea fans went into the match full of schadenfreude; the previous night, Mourinho's Tottenham, having lost two of their first three group games and needing a win in the Parc Des Princes to stand any chance of progressing to the knockout stage, had lost 3-0 to a rampant Paris Saint-Germain.

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

Azpilicueta Rüdiger Christensen Emerson 

Kanté 

Barkley Mount 

Willian Giroud Hudson-Odoi 

Substitutes: Caballero, Tomori, Kovacic, Abraham, Zouma, James, Batshuayi 

 

Bayer Leverkusen

Hradecký

L. Bender Tah S. Bender Wendell 

Palacios 

Aránguiz Havertz 

Bailey Volland Diaby

Substitutes: Özcan, Tapsoba, Baumgartlinger, Alario, Sinkgraven, Weiser, Demirbay

 

Referee: José Munuera Montoya (ESP)

 

Ils sont les meilleurs 

Sie sind die besten 

These are the Champions 

 

Die meister 

Die besten 

Les meilleurs équipes 

The Champions!

 

Chelsea looked to dominate and in the third minute, a corner from Emerson found Giroud, whose header from a tight angle was tipped over by Hradecký.

 

Two minutes later, a free kick from Willian found Barkley, who sent a header just over. 

 

The first half was largely quiet but in the 34th minute, Emerson robbed Bailey and passed low to Hudson-Odoi. Hudson-Odoi wriggled away from Bailey and got into the area only for his shot to be blocked by Palacios. Emerson recovered, and crossed into the area, where Willian sent a header off target. 

 

A disappointing Giroud was withdrawn on the hour for Abraham while Leverkusen replaced Bailey with Alario, and in the 70th minute Chelsea won a corner. Emerson's ball found Abraham, whose header from an awkward angle went just over. Havertz then went off, to be replaced by Demirbay. 

 

In the 76th minute, Leverkusen were awarded a free kick. Demirbay took it, and passed to Palacios. Palacios sent the ball flying towards goal, but Kepa did well to tip it over and Tah had been offside. 

 

Chelsea brought Kovacic on in the closing stages, and this nearly paid dividends. In stoppage time, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Kovacic went for goal, and Hadrecký did well to tip it wide with Abraham's header looping over from the resulting corner. 

 

Wednesday 6 November 2020, 20:00:  UEFA Champions League Group G - at Stamford Bridge, London 

Chelsea 0-0 Bayer Leverkusen 

Attendance: 39,778 (1,147 away)

Man of the Match: Jonathan Tah

 

Despite a disappointing performance, a point at home to Slavia Prague would be enough to secure qualification for the knockout stage. In addition, it had been another dominant defensive performance. 

 

Group Tables:

| Pos | Inf   | Team       | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st |       | RB Leipzig | GER   | 4     | 2     | 1     | 1     | 6     | 4     | 2     | 7     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Valencia   | ESP   | 4     | 1     | 3     | 0     | 3     | 2     | 1     | 6     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | FC Porto   | POR   | 4     | 1     | 2     | 1     | 6     | 3     | 3     | 5     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Zenit      | RUS   | 4     | 0     | 2     | 2     | 0     | 6     | -6    | 2     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team          | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q     | Barcelona     | ESP   | 4     | 4     | 0     | 0     | 14    | 2     | 12    | 12    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Atalanta      | ITA   | 4     | 2     | 0     | 2     | 5     | 8     | -3    | 6     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Ajax          | NED   | 4     | 2     | 0     | 2     | 5     | 4     | 1     | 6     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | FC Copenhagen | DEN   | 4     | 0     | 0     | 4     | 0     | 10    | -10   | 0     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team             | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q     | Real Madrid      | ESP   | 4     | 4     | 0     | 0     | 10    | 1     | 9     | 12    | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd | Q     | Liverpool        | ENG   | 4     | 3     | 0     | 1     | 15    | 2     | 13    | 9     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Lokomotiv Moscow | RUS   | 4     | 0     | 1     | 3     | 1     | 15    | -14   | 1     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Club Brugge KV   | BEL   | 4     | 0     | 1     | 3     | 1     | 9     | -8    | 1     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team       | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q     | Paris SG   | FRA   | 4     | 3     | 1     | 0     | 8     | 1     | 7     | 10    | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd | Q     | SL Benfica | POR   | 4     | 3     | 1     | 0     | 7     | 1     | 6     | 10    | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Tottenham  | ENG   | 4     | 1     | 0     | 3     | 7     | 7     | 0     | 3     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | KRC Genk   | BEL   | 4     | 0     | 0     | 4     | 0     | 13    | -13   | 0     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team                 | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st |       | Borussia Dortmund    | GER   | 4     | 2     | 1     | 1     | 11    | 7     | 4     | 7     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Juventus             | ITA   | 4     | 1     | 3     | 0     | 9     | 8     | 1     | 6     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | FC Red Bull Salzburg | AUT   | 4     | 1     | 2     | 1     | 6     | 5     | 1     | 5     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | LOSC Lille           | FRA   | 4     | 0     | 2     | 2     | 6     | 12    | -6    | 2     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team              | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st |       | FC Bayern Munich  | GER   | 4     | 2     | 2     | 0     | 8     | 3     | 5     | 8     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Celtic            | SCO   | 4     | 2     | 0     | 2     | 5     | 9     | -4    | 6     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Inter Milan       | ITA   | 4     | 1     | 1     | 2     | 3     | 5     | -2    | 4     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Atlético Madrid   | ESP   | 4     | 1     | 1     | 2     | 5     | 4     | 1     | 4     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team                | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st |       | Chelsea             | ENG   | 4     | 3     | 1     | 0     | 6     | 2     | 4     | 10    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | SSC Napoli          | ITA   | 4     | 2     | 1     | 1     | 5     | 4     | 1     | 7     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Bayer 04 Leverkusen | GER   | 4     | 1     | 2     | 1     | 9     | 4     | 5     | 5     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Slavia Prague       | CZE   | 4     | 0     | 0     | 4     | 2     | 12    | -10   | 0     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team        | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q     | Man City    | ENG   | 4     | 3     | 1     | 0     | 15    | 5     | 10    | 10    | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Lyon        | FRA   | 4     | 3     | 0     | 1     | 4     | 4     | 0     | 9     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Galatasaray | TUR   | 4     | 1     | 1     | 2     | 6     | 10    | -4    | 4     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Shakhtar    | UKR   | 4     | 0     | 0     | 4     | 2     | 8     | -6    | 0     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

Other results:

Champions League:

Group A: RB Leipzig 3-0 Zenit (Werner pen 79, 86; Klostermann 90+3), Valencia 1-0 FC Porto (Gómez 1; Otávio s/o 58)

Group B: FC Copenhagen 0-1 Ajax (Qvist s/o 78; Ziyech 36), Atalanta 0-2 Barcelona (Suárez 13, Messi 45)

Group C: Lokomotiv Moscow 0-6 Liverpool (Mané 4, 12, 27, Henderson 20, 62, Salah 48), Real Madrid 3-0 Club Brugge (Modric 32, Ramos 63, Kroos 72; Vormer s/o 90+4)

Group D: KRC Genk 0-2 Benfica (Jardel 13, Samaris 63), PSG 3-0 Tottenham (Meunier 29, 43, Mbappé 69)

Group E: Juventus 4-4 Borussia Dortmund (Alex Sandro 12, Cuadrado 31, Ronaldo 41, Rabiot 49; Sancho 52, Haaland 55, 67, Hakimi 85), LOSC Lille 1-3 Red Bull Salzburg (Fonte 8; Okafor 31, 42, 43)

Group F: Atlético Madrid 3-0 Celtic (Diego Costa 29, Correa 44, Félix 82), Inter Milan 1-1 Bayern Munich (Sánchez 78; Coutinho 45)

Group G: Slavia Prague 1-2 Napoli (Kodr 31; Milik 45, Vlcek og 60)

Group H: Lyon 2-1 Shakhtar (Cornet 34, Ekambi 70; Stepanenko 66)

 

Europa League

Group A: AEK 0-3 Arsenal (Özil 17, Aubameyang 21, Torreira 47)

Group C: Jablonec 1-4 Man Utd (Kubik 90; Rashford pen 22, 27, Martial 38, Pereira 44)

Group D: Rangers 0-2 Wolfsburg (Weghorst 2, 51)

Group I: Wolves 2-1 Beşiktaş (Moutinho 13, Neto 76; Lens 30)

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Posted (edited)

Chelsea travelled to Anfield the weekend before the international break. The Blues were still suffering an injury crisis, with Jorginho and Pulisic still unavailable. Kovacic was only fit enough for the bench.

 

Liverpool 

Alisson 

Alexander-Arnold van Dijk Gomez Robertson 

Fabinho 

Henderson Keïta 

Salah Firmino Mané

Substitutes: Adrián, Matip, Milner, Origi, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Lovren, Wijnaldum 

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

James Rüdiger Christensen Azpilicueta

Kanté 

Barkley Mount 

Willian Abraham Hudson-Odoi 

Substitutes: Caballero, Tomori, Kovacic, Giroud, Zouma, Emerson, Batshuayi 

 

Referee: Graham Scott 

 

Within the first minute it became clear that Chelsea were in for a long afternoon as a close range shot from Mané was saved by Kepa. Two minutes later, Naby Keïta was booked for a foul on Willian. 

 

In the seventh minute, Liverpool won a corner. The ball was cleared, but Gomez got it back, and knocked it down the line for Mané. Mané got to the byline and pulled the ball back for Firmino in theChelsea area. Firmino passed back to Robertson, who sent a powerful shot into the top corner of the net. 

 

Two minutes later, Willian was booked for a foul on Robertson. The resulting free kick saw Liverpool win a corner, which was headed clear by Christensen. Mané recovered and sent the ball back into the area, where Salah's header missed the target. 

 

In the fifteenth minute, Barkley was shown a yellow card for a foul on Mané. Six minutes later, a corner from Salah was headed clear by Rüdiger. Mané picked the ball up and played it back to Fabinho, whose shot was blocked by Kanté.

 

In the 24th minute, Liverpool were awarded a free kick after Graham Scott tried to play advantage, and Azpilicueta was booked. Salah's ball was cleared by Christensen, but only as far as Fabinho. Fabinho shifted the focus to Salah on the right, and Salah cut inside before passing to Mané. Mané passed to Firmino, who sprayed the ball out left to Robertson. Robertson looked to cross, but the ball was cleared.

 

In the 30th minute, Liverpool won another corner. Salah's ball found Fabinho, who headed it to Keïta, and Keïta sent a left footed volley sailing wide of the mark. 

 

Andreas Christensen was the next name to go into the book, for a foul on Firmino.

 

Liverpool were presented with a golden opportunity in the 38th minute. A poor pass from Rüdiger was pounced on by Salah, who sent a shot curling wide. 

 

In the 44th minute, a cross from Alexander-Arnold was volleyed home by Mané to double Liverpool's lead.

 

In stoppage time, a rasping shot from Keïta was saved by Kepa as Liverpool dominated completely. 

 

Seven minutes into the second half, Salah took off down the right, only for Azpilicueta to tackle him. Keïta then went for goal, sending a shot off target. Keïta had another go six minutes later, again shooting wide. 

 

Spencer pulled Chelsea's defence deeper in an attempt at damage limitation, and Salah and Alexander-Arnold were replaced by Origi and Wijnaldum. Origi was then fouled by James, who received a yellow card, before Henderson was replaced by Matip. Spencer withdrew Abraham and Barkley, replacing them with Giroud and Kovacic, before Mount was replaced by Zouma. 

 

With six minutes left, Mané took the ball down the right before curling it in to the far post. Origi got up to head it, but sent a looping header over the bar. The final whistle marked George Spencer's first defeat as Chelsea manager, the end of the last unbeaten record in the Premier League and easily Chelsea's worst performance so far that season. 

 

Saturday 9 November 2019, 12:30: Barclays Premier League - at Anfield, Liverpool 

Liverpool 2-0 Chelsea (Robertson 7, Mané 44)

Attendance: 54,074 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Andrew Robertson 

"I want to apologise to the fans who had to watch that today," Spencer told BT Sport's Des Kelly after the match, "It simply wasn't good enough."

 

Spencer was browsing through Twitter on a subdued coach trip back to John Lennon Airport when something caught his attention; a tweet by Piers Morgan reading "Chelsea fans. Your team could never." accompanied by a picture of a gold Premier League trophy, and a tweet reading "Best thing about today; seeing all those racists with faces like smacked arses traipsing out of the ground. Hope their trains break down on the way home. #LIVCHE #YNWA". The tweet was attached to a user named Kyle Greenwood, who looked like a cross between Gerard Butler and a hipster.

Spencer narrowed his eyes as he clicked on the username, to reveal the bio in which he described himself as a "professional comedian. Worked on Mrs Brown's Boys, All Round to Mrs Brown's, and The Mash Report"

"I'd say describing himself as a comedian, or any of those as comedy, is a breach of the Trade Descriptions Act" Spencer muttered to nobody in particular, as he put his phone away and looked at the email from the board which listed the positive and negatives from the match.

Other results:

Friday

Tottenham 1-1 Leicester (Lucas Moura 65; Maddison 14)

 

Saturday

Bournemouth 2-1 Everton (H. Wilson pen 13, C. Wilson 87; Keane 16)

Crystal Palace 1-1 Watford (Zaha 11; Pereyra 52)

Newcastle 1-4 Southampton (Rose 77; Ward-Prowse 42, Ings 48, 57, Danso 90+2)

Norwich 2-1 Brighton (Trybull 48, Duffy og 90+2; Mac Allister 49)

Man City 2-0 Aston Villa (Mahrez 53, 54)

 

Sunday 

Man Utd 2-0 West Ham (Rashford 4, Martial pen 6)

Wolves 1-0 Burnley (Diogo Jota 51)

Arsenal 1-1 Sheff Utd (David Luiz 74, Xhaka s/o 47; Fleck 66)

 

League table

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Man City       | 12    | 9     | 2     | 1     | 28    | 9     | 19    | 29    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Chelsea        | 12    | 8     | 3     | 1     | 18    | 7     | 11    | 27    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Liverpool      | 12    | 8     | 1     | 3     | 30    | 12    | 18    | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Man Utd        | 12    | 6     | 4     | 2     | 19    | 9     | 10    | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Bournemouth    | 12    | 7     | 1     | 4     | 20    | 12    | 8     | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Arsenal        | 12    | 7     | 1     | 4     | 17    | 11    | 6     | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Norwich        | 12    | 7     | 0     | 5     | 16    | 15    | 1     | 21    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Wolves         | 12    | 6     | 1     | 5     | 21    | 12    | 9     | 19    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Leicester      | 12    | 5     | 4     | 3     | 16    | 12    | 4     | 19    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Tottenham      | 12    | 5     | 4     | 3     | 13    | 14    | -1    | 19    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Everton        | 12    | 5     | 3     | 4     | 15    | 14    | 1     | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Southampton    | 12    | 4     | 4     | 4     | 14    | 12    | 2     | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Burnley        | 12    | 4     | 4     | 4     | 14    | 13    | 1     | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | Aston Villa    | 12    | 4     | 2     | 6     | 13    | 18    | -5    | 14    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | Sheff Utd      | 12    | 3     | 3     | 6     | 9     | 17    | -8    | 12    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | West Ham       | 12    | 2     | 4     | 6     | 7     | 18    | -11   | 10    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | Brighton       | 12    | 3     | 1     | 8     | 15    | 30    | -15   | 10    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | Watford        | 12    | 2     | 3     | 7     | 9     | 16    | -7    | 9     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Crystal Palace | 12    | 1     | 2     | 9     | 7     | 23    | -16   | 5     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 12    | 0     | 1     | 11    | 13    | 40    | -27   | 1     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

 

Edited by Drogba11CFC

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Spencer needed Chelsea to bounce back after the defeat at Anfield and as luck would have it, their next game was at home to Newcastle, who had picked up just one point so far that season and had the leakiest defence in the Premier League. Spencer was missing Azpilicueta due to suspension, so Emerson started at left back with Reece James on the right. 

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

James Zouma Tomori Emerson 

Kanté

Kovacic Mount 

Pulisic Abraham Hudson-Odoi 

Substitutes: Caballero, Rüdiger, Christensen, Jorginho, Barkley, Willian, Giroud 

 

Newcastle United 

Dubravka

Lascelles Fernández Dummett

Lazaro Shelvey Bentaleb Rose

St-Maximin Joelinton Almirón

Substitutes: Darlow, Willems, S. Longstaff, Gayle, M. Longstaff, Lejeune, Hayden 

 

Referee: David Coote

 

It looked as though only one side would be in it from the kick off and in the third minute, Hudson-Odoi received a throw-in and passed back to Emerson. Emerson got into the area and had a go, sending the ball into the net off the post. It was his first ever goal for Chelsea and it was just the start Spencer wanted. 

 

Barely a minute later, Pulisic got to the edge of the area and passed to Hudson-Odoi. Hudson-Odoi looked for Kovacic, who sent a shot wide of the mark. 

 

In the eighth minute, a long ball from Dummett was headed clear by Emerson to Hudson-Odoi, who played a low pass to Mount. Mount took the ball deep into the Newcastle half before passing to Pulisic, who found Kovacic. Kovacic put the ball into space for Emerson, who sent in a cross, and Abraham got up to head home from close range. 

 

Chelsea now had full control of the game, and had no intention of letting up. In the 27th minute, James' throw-in found Abraham, who passed back to Kovacic. Kovacic took off on a long run to the edge of the Newcastle area, before spraying the ball out left to Emerson. Emerson got into the area before crossing to Abraham, who planted another header into the net from the edge of the six yard box. 

 

Four minutes later, Kovacic played a one-two with Zouma before passing to Kanté. Kanté sought out Mount, who brought Kovacic into play. Kovacic again searched out Emerson on the left, and this time Emerson passed to Mount, who sent a shot considerably wide. 

 

In the 32nd minute, Reece James passed down the line for Pulisic, whose cross was deflected behind. The corner was only cleared to Kanté, whose header found the net. As Chelsea celebrated, however, VAR spotted a foul on Dubravka by Pulisic, and the goal was overturned.

 

Newcastle looked to damage limitation in the second half, and in the 64th minute they were awarded a free kick. Allan Saint-Maximin sent it into the area, where Danny Rose headed home to potentially bring Newcastle back into the game. 

 

Chelsea, however, looked to respond immediately, and two minutes later a long ball from Kovacic found Abraham, who centred the ball. The clearance was collected by James, who passed to Kovacic. Kovacic searched out Emerson on the left, and Emerson sent a low ball into the area, which Pulisic slid in to turn into the net. 

 

With just over 20 minutes left, Mount's corner was headed clear by Joelinton but only as far as Kanté. Kanté's shot struck the post, and Saint-Maximin looked to counter, getting into the Chelsea half before being tripped by Pulisic, who was shown a yellow card. 

 

In the 75th minute, Reece James played a cross to Hudson-Odoi, whose header was saved by Dubravka.

 

Three minutes later, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Kovacic sent the ball into the area, where Abraham powered a header into the net for his hat-trick and his tenth goal of the season. He was then taken off to a standing ovation, with Giroud coming on to replace him.

 

Mateo Kovacic made way for Jorginho, and in the 89th minute, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Mason Mount sent the ball into the area where Zouma saw a header saved by Dubravka before Jorginho pounced on the rebound. However, VAR disallowed the goal due to offside.

 

Saturday 23 November 2019, 15:00: Barclays Premier League - at Stamford Bridge, London 

Chelsea 5-1 Newcastle United (Emerson 3, Abraham 8, 27, 78, Pulisic 66; Rose 64)

Attendance: 41,631 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Tammy Abraham 

 

Spencer was, understandably, delighted with the performance as well as Abraham's hat-trick, telling Sky Sports News' Mark Willoughby that "It was absolutely tremendous and that is reflected in the goals he scored." Steve Bruce, meanwhile, told BBC London's Dominic Moran that "He was brilliant; I just wish he'd saved that performance for next week." Bruce was under fire; a supporter poll revealed that 57% wanted him sacked, while The True Geordie released a YouTube video titled "CHELSEA 5-1 NEWCASTLE: ASHLEY OUT! BRUCE OUT!"

 

Other results:

Friday 

West Ham 0-1 Arsenal (Lacazette 10)

Saturday 

Leicester 0-3 Man City (Agüero pen 27, Cancelo 58, B. Silva 61)

Aston Villa 3-0 Tottenham (Samatta 5, Trezeguet 45, Konsa 50)

Sheff Utd 3-0 Crystal Palace (O'Connell 55, Freeman 86, Basham 89)

Watford 1-1 Norwich (Doucouré 30; Pukki 60)

Southampton 1-3 Liverpool (Long 90+2; Milner pen 49, Alexander-Arnold 59, Matip 88)

 

Sunday 

Burnley 0-0 Man Utd 

Brighton 4-2 Bournemouth (Mac Allister 7, Groß 45, Burn 59, Maupay 73; Solanke 67, 76)

 

Monday 

Everton 1-1 Wolves (Calvert-Lewin 80; Jiménez 24)

 

League Table 

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Man City       | 13    | 10    | 2     | 1     | 31    | 9     | 22    | 32    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Chelsea        | 13    | 9     | 3     | 1     | 23    | 8     | 15    | 30    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Liverpool      | 13    | 9     | 1     | 3     | 33    | 13    | 20    | 28    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Arsenal        | 13    | 8     | 1     | 4     | 18    | 11    | 7     | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Man Utd        | 13    | 6     | 5     | 2     | 19    | 9     | 10    | 23    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Bournemouth    | 13    | 7     | 1     | 5     | 22    | 16    | 6     | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Norwich        | 13    | 7     | 1     | 5     | 17    | 16    | 1     | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Wolves         | 13    | 6     | 2     | 5     | 22    | 13    | 9     | 20    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Everton        | 13    | 5     | 4     | 4     | 16    | 15    | 1     | 19    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Leicester      | 13    | 5     | 4     | 4     | 16    | 15    | 1     | 19    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Tottenham      | 13    | 5     | 4     | 4     | 13    | 17    | -4    | 19    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Burnley        | 13    | 4     | 5     | 4     | 14    | 13    | 1     | 17    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Aston Villa    | 13    | 5     | 2     | 6     | 16    | 18    | -2    | 17    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | Southampton    | 13    | 4     | 4     | 5     | 15    | 15    | 0     | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | Sheff Utd      | 13    | 4     | 3     | 6     | 12    | 17    | -5    | 15    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | Brighton       | 13    | 4     | 1     | 8     | 19    | 32    | -13   | 13    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | Watford        | 13    | 2     | 4     | 7     | 10    | 17    | -7    | 10    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | West Ham       | 13    | 2     | 4     | 7     | 7     | 19    | -12   | 10    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Crystal Palace | 13    | 1     | 2     | 10    | 7     | 26    | -19   | 5     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 13    | 0     | 1     | 12    | 14    | 45    | -31   | 1     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

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Posted (edited)

Chelsea hosted Slavia Prague with the situation both easy and complicated. If Chelsea won, they would win the group if Napoli failed to beat Bayer Leverkusen. A draw would be enough for Chelsea to qualify, and if they lost they'd still go through if Bayer Leverkusen failed to beat Napoli. Spencer, however, demanded nothing short of a win.

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

Tomori Zouma Christensen Azpilicueta 

Kanté 

Kovacic Mount 

Pulisic Abraham Willian 

Substitutes: Caballero, Rüdiger, Jorginho, Barkley, Giroud, Batshuayi, Emerson 

 

Slavia Prague 

Taborsky 

Vlcek Schick Vlcek Hunal 

Tetour Tvrdik 

Pospisil Koubek Chalus

Kodr

Substitutes: Bohac, Goerojo, P. Koukal, Gabriel, M. Koukal, Soucek 

 

Referee: Alejandro Hernández (ESP)

 

Ils sont les meilleurs 

Sie sind die besten 

These are the Champions 

 

Die meister 

Die besten 

Les meilleurs équipes 

The Champions!

 

As early as the first minute, Azpilicueta crossed into the area for Pulisic, who sent a shot at Taborsky. 

 

Six minutes later, Kovacic passed into the area for Abraham, whose shot from a tight angle was tipped behind by Taborsky. Mount looked for Zouma from the corner, but it was headed clear. 

 

In the 29th minute, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Kovacic sent the ball into the area, and Zouma rose highest to power a header into the net for his first goal of the season. 

 

Chelsea won a corner eight minutes later, but Abraham's header was cleared off the line. 

 

Chelsea were going well, but just before half time, Willian was forced off with a bruised ankle and replaced by Barkley.

 

In the 58th minute, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Barkley went for goal, but his effort struck the wall.

 

With 25 minutes left, Azpilicueta passed a free kick to Barkley. Barkley passed to Kovacic, and Kovacic played a long ball to Pulisic, who took one touch before smashing a shot into the opposite corner of the net. It was a goal described as "Genius" by Simon Brotherton on BT Sport, and it all but guaranteed Chelsea's passage to the knockout stage. 

 

The rest of the half passed without much incident, as Chelsea saw out a solid, if unspectacular, win.

 

"You did what was needed out there," Spencer said in the dressing room after the match, "And what's more, I've just been told that Leverkusen have beaten Napoli. Congratulations, we've won the group."

 

Tuesday 26 November 2019, 20:00: UEFA Champions League Group G - at Stamford Bridge, London 

Chelsea 2-0 Slavia Prague (Zouma 29, Pulisic 66)

Attendance: 39,232 (601 away)

Man of the Match: Mateo Kovacic 

 

Group Tables 

| Pos | Inf   | Team       | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st |       | FC Porto   | POR   | 5     | 2     | 2     | 1     | 9     | 5     | 4     | 8     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | RB Leipzig | GER   | 5     | 2     | 2     | 1     | 6     | 4     | 2     | 8     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Valencia   | ESP   | 5     | 1     | 4     | 0     | 3     | 2     | 1     | 7     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Zenit      | RUS   | 5     | 0     | 2     | 3     | 2     | 9     | -7    | 2     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

| Pos | Inf   | Team          | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q1    | Barcelona     | ESP   | 5     | 5     | 0     | 0     | 17    | 2     | 15    | 15    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Atalanta      | ITA   | 5     | 3     | 0     | 2     | 7     | 9     | -2    | 9     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Ajax          | NED   | 5     | 2     | 0     | 3     | 5     | 7     | -2    | 6     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | FC Copenhagen | DEN   | 5     | 0     | 0     | 5     | 1     | 12    | -11   | 0     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team             | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q     | Real Madrid      | ESP   | 5     | 5     | 0     | 0     | 12    | 1     | 11    | 15    | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd | Q     | Liverpool        | ENG   | 5     | 4     | 0     | 1     | 17    | 3     | 14    | 12    | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Lokomotiv Moscow | RUS   | 5     | 0     | 1     | 4     | 1     | 17    | -16   | 1     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Club Brugge KV   | BEL   | 5     | 0     | 1     | 4     | 2     | 11    | -9    | 1     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team       | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q     | Paris SG   | FRA   | 5     | 4     | 1     | 0     | 13    | 1     | 12    | 13    | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd | Q     | SL Benfica | POR   | 5     | 3     | 1     | 1     | 8     | 4     | 4     | 10    | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Tottenham  | ENG   | 5     | 2     | 0     | 3     | 10    | 8     | 2     | 6     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | KRC Genk   | BEL   | 5     | 0     | 0     | 5     | 0     | 18    | -18   | 0     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team                 | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q1    | Borussia Dortmund    | GER   | 5     | 3     | 1     | 1     | 12    | 7     | 5     | 10    | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Juventus             | ITA   | 5     | 1     | 3     | 1     | 9     | 11    | -2    | 6     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | FC Red Bull Salzburg | AUT   | 5     | 1     | 2     | 2     | 6     | 6     | 0     | 5     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | LOSC Lille           | FRA   | 5     | 1     | 2     | 2     | 9     | 12    | -3    | 5     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team              | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q     | Bayern Munich	  | GER   | 5     | 2     | 3     | 0     | 9     | 4     | 5     | 9     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Celtic            | SCO   | 5     | 2     | 1     | 2     | 6     | 10    | -4    | 7     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Inter Milan       | ITA   | 5     | 1     | 2     | 2     | 4     | 6     | -2    | 5     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Atlético Madrid   | ESP   | 5     | 1     | 2     | 2     | 6     | 5     | 1     | 5     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team                | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q1    | Chelsea             | ENG   | 5     | 4     | 1     | 0     | 8     | 2     | 6     | 13    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd |       | Bayer 04 Leverkusen | GER   | 5     | 2     | 2     | 1     | 14    | 7     | 7     | 8     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | SSC Napoli          | ITA   | 5     | 2     | 1     | 2     | 8     | 9     | -1    | 7     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Slavia Prague       | CZE   | 5     | 0     | 0     | 5     | 2     | 14    | -12   | 0     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team        | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q1    | Man City    | ENG   | 5     | 4     | 1     | 0     | 17    | 6     | 11    | 13    | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd | Q2    | Lyon        | FRA   | 5     | 3     | 0     | 2     | 5     | 6     | -1    | 9     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Galatasaray | TUR   | 5     | 1     | 1     | 3     | 7     | 12    | -5    | 4     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Shakhtar    | UKR   | 5     | 1     | 0     | 4     | 4     | 9     | -5    | 3     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

Other results 

Group A: FC Porto 3-2 Zenit (Díaz 32, Pereira 45, Uribe 90+3; Dzyuba 25, pen 45+3), Valencia 0-0 RB Leipzig 

Group B: Atalanta 2-1 FC Copenhagen (Muriel 68, Castigne 75; Schou 50), Barcelona 3-0 Ajax (Dembélé 25, Messi pen 38, Rakitic 53; van de Beek s/o 50)

Group C: Club Brugge 1-2 Liverpool (Damman 63, Feys s/o 28; Origi 41, Firmino 60), Real Madrid 2-0 Lokomotiv Moscow (Hazard 63, 73)

Group D: PSG 5-0 KRC Genk (Icardi 4, pen 36, Mbappé 12, Herrera 20, Sarabia 77), Tottenham 3-1 Benfica (Sánchez 47, Kane 56, 68; Pizzi 85)

Group E: Borussia Dortmund 1-0 Red Bull Salzburg (Haaland 14), Juventus 0-3 LOSC Lille (Osimhen 22, 52, 85)

Group F: Atlético Madrid 1-1 Inter Milan (Diego Costa pen 24; de Vrij 43), Celtic 1-1 Bayern Munich (Arzani 66; Gnabry 87)

Group G: Bayer Leverkusen 5-3 Napoli (Diaby 3, Bailey 5, 23, 57, Volland 48; Milik 58, 75, Politano 72)

Group H: Lyon 1-2 Man City (Ekambi 60; Agüero 3, 75), Shakhtar 2-1 Galatasaray (Moraes 44, Bolbat pen 65; Büyük 45+1)

 

Europa League:

Group A: Ferencváros 0-3 Arsenal (Pépé pen 29, Özil 30, Lacazette 66)

Group C: PAOK 2-2 Man Utd (Akpom 15, Tsorbas 90+4; Rashford 54, 66)

Group D: Red Star Belgrade 0-1 Rangers (Jack 87)

Group I: Braga 0-0 Wolves

Edited by Drogba11CFC

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With qualification as group winners assured, Chelsea turned their attention to the league game away to high-flying Norwich, who were eighth in the league after an impressive start to the season. Spencer opted to play Giroud up front, partly with Manchester City in mind. 

 

Norwich City

Krul

Aarons Godfrey Zimmermann Byram

Rupp Trybull 

Buendía Vrancic Cantwell 

Pukki

Substitutes: Fährmann, Klose, Hernández, Drmic, Leitner, Nizet, Stiepermann

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

James Zouma Tomori Azpilicueta 

Jorginho 

Kanté Kovacic 

Pulisic Giroud Hudson-Odoi 

Substitutes: Caballero, Rüdiger, Christensen, Abraham, Willian, Mount, Emerson 

 

Referee: Kevin Friend 

 

Many supporters were still settling into their seats in the second minute when Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Reece James moved the ball left to Jorginho, who exchanged passes with Kanté, James and Zouma before searching out Hudson-Odoi. Hudson-Odoi lost possession, but Azpilicueta took over and exchanged passes with Jorginho before passing back to Tomori, who angled a 35 yard pass out left to Hudson-Odoi. Hudson-Odoi looked for Azpilicueta, who hit the ball back 30 yards to Jorginho. Jorginho exchanged passes with Kanté before weighting a 40 yard pass to James on the right. James nodded the ball to Pulisic, who played it back. James then sent in a low cross towards Hudson-Odoi, who hit an audacious right-footed shot into the net to give Chelsea the perfect start. 

 

Seven minutes later, Jorginho played a long ball to Hudson-Odoi, who headed it to Kovacic. Kovacic passed to Azpilicueta, who got into the area before firing a low shot into the area past an unsighted Krul. As Chelsea celebrated, Ian Darke, commentating on BT Sport, said "It's a long way back from here for Norwich City!"

 

Chelsea mercilessly looked to increase their lead, with Tim Krul having to be on hand to catch a 25th-minute corner from Reece James. Seconds later, another Chelsea attack saw Giroud head over.

 

Jorginho became the first player to be booked in the 33rd minute, for a trip on Cantwell. Four minutes later, a clever backheel from Kovacic found Hudson-Odoi, whose shot was saved by Krul. 

 

Norwich removed Vrancic at half time, replacing him with Stiepermann. However, Chelsea once again came flying out of the blocks, as virtually from the kickoff, Pulisic was fouled by Rupp. Kevin Friend played the advantage, however, and Pulisic got into the area before passing to James. James aimed for the near post, where Giroud rose highest. Krul actually got both hands on the ball, but couldn't keep it out. 

 

Two minutes later, Rupp was booked for a foul on Kanté. Kovacic sent the free kick into the area, but Krul easily gathered the ball. Emi Buendía looked to set up an attack, but Byram's pass was intercepted by Pulisic. Pulisic took the ball into the Norwich half, before putting it into space for Hudson-Odoi. Hudson-Odoi took the ball into the area before pulling it back to Kanté, who sent a left-footed volley rocketing into the opposite corner of the net. 

 

In the 54th minute, Buendía was booked for a foul on Azpilicueta. A minute later, a corner from Kovacic found Jorginho, whose header was saved by Krul. On the hour, a free kick from Buendía found Godfrey, who headed the ball over the bar. 

 

In the 65th minute, Norwich replaced Trybull with Leitner, before Hernández came on for Cantwell. Two minutes later, a counter attack by Norwich saw Aarons get down the right before Buendía crossed the ball to Hernández, whose volley crashed against the crossbar. 

 

With fifteen minutes left, Byram played a searching pass into the area for Buendía, whose shot was blocked by Azpilicueta before Tomori cleared. A minute later, Buendía once again found Hernández, whose header cleared the crossbar. Godfrey then struck a piledriver over the bar as the home fans began to leave early. Chelsea then made a change, bringing on Willian for Pulisic. 

 

With six minutes left, a piledriver by Stiepermann was tipped over by Kepa, with Godfrey's header being saved from the resulting corner.

 

A minute later, Leitner was robbed by Kanté, who laid the ball right to Willian. Willian looked for Jorginho, who passed back to Zouma. Zouma angled a 35 yard pass right to James, who played a one-two with Willian before his cross was cleared by Godfrey. 

 

With two minutes left, Willian got into the box before passing to Giroud, whose shot went the wrong side of the post. Not that it mattered, however, as the result had been beyond doubt since just after half time.

 

Saturday 30 November 2019, 12:30: Barclays Premier League - at Carrow Road, Norwich 

Norwich City 0-4 Chelsea (Hudson-Odoi 3, Azpilicueta 10, Giroud 46, Kanté 49)

Attendance: 27,359 (2,735 away)

Man of the Match: Callum Hudson-Odoi 

 

Spencer was full of praise for Hudson-Odoi after the match, telling Des Kelly that "He was simply faultless today." 

 

Other results:

Friday:

Bournemouth 3-0 Burnley (Gosling 73, King 76, Rico 81)

 

Saturday 

Crystal Palace 0-1 Aston Villa (Wesley 44)

Newcastle 1-4 Leicester (Shelvey 13; Vardy pen 17, Maddison 28, 59, 62, Pereira s/o 76)

Tottenham 1-1 Watford (Sissoko 14; Deeney pen 76)

Liverpool 4-0 Brighton (Keïta 5, Mané 16, 30, Firmino 90+3; Montoya s/o 14)

Man City 2-0 Sheff Utd (Agüero pen 18, Otamendi 71)

 

Sunday:

Man Utd 4-1 Everton (Martial 4, 25, Fred 68, 75; Iwobi 90+3)

Arsenal 4-1 Southampton (Lacazette 8, Ceballos 45+2, Aubameyang 59, Nelson 72; Long 73)

Wolves 3-1 West Ham (Coady 23, Moutinho 39, Traoré 67)

 

League Table:

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Man City       | 14    | 11    | 2     | 1     | 33    | 9     | 24    | 35    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Chelsea        | 14    | 10    | 3     | 1     | 27    | 8     | 19    | 33    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Liverpool      | 14    | 10    | 1     | 3     | 37    | 13    | 24    | 31    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Arsenal        | 14    | 9     | 1     | 4     | 22    | 12    | 10    | 28    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Man Utd        | 14    | 7     | 5     | 2     | 23    | 10    | 13    | 26    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Bournemouth    | 14    | 8     | 1     | 5     | 25    | 16    | 9     | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Wolves         | 14    | 7     | 2     | 5     | 25    | 14    | 11    | 23    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Leicester      | 14    | 6     | 4     | 4     | 20    | 16    | 4     | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Norwich        | 14    | 7     | 1     | 6     | 17    | 20    | -3    | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Aston Villa    | 14    | 6     | 2     | 6     | 17    | 18    | -1    | 20    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Tottenham      | 14    | 5     | 5     | 4     | 14    | 18    | -4    | 20    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Everton        | 14    | 5     | 4     | 5     | 17    | 19    | -2    | 19    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Burnley        | 14    | 4     | 5     | 5     | 14    | 16    | -2    | 17    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | Southampton    | 14    | 4     | 4     | 6     | 16    | 19    | -3    | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | Sheff Utd      | 14    | 4     | 3     | 7     | 12    | 19    | -7    | 15    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | Brighton       | 14    | 4     | 1     | 9     | 19    | 36    | -17   | 13    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | Watford        | 14    | 2     | 5     | 7     | 11    | 18    | -7    | 11    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | West Ham       | 14    | 2     | 4     | 8     | 8     | 22    | -14   | 10    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Crystal Palace | 14    | 1     | 2     | 11    | 7     | 27    | -20   | 5     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 14    | 0     | 1     | 13    | 15    | 49    | -34   | 1     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 



 

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On Monday evening, the FA Cup third round draw took place, with Spencer watching it on BBC1. The home teams were drawn out by former Chelsea defender Wayne Bridge, while Shay Given handled the away teams. 

 

"Good evening, and welcome to the draw for the third round of the Football Association Challenge Cup. The first ball out is…"

 

"Number eight."

 

"Number eight is Brighton and Hove Albion, and they are at home to…"

 

"Number twenty."

 

"Are at home to Leeds United."

 

"Number 52."

 

"Blackpool."

 

"Number 36."

 

"Blackpool will play Southampton."

 

"Number 5."

 

"That is Birmingham City."

 

"Number fifteen."

 

"Birmingham City are at home to Derby County."

 

"Number nineteen."

 

"Hull City, finalists in 2014."

 

"Number 55"

 

"Hull City will play Scunthorpe United."

 

"Number 56."

 

"Peterborough United."

 

"Number 40."

 

"Peterborough United are at home to Watford."

 

"Number 37."

 

"Stoke City, finalists in 2011."

 

"Number 57."

 

"Will play Rotherham United or Ebbsfleet United."

 

"Number 12."

 

"Charlton Athletic."

 

"Number 46."

 

"Are at home to Gillingham."

 

"Number 34."

 

"Sheffield United."

 

"Number 16."

 

"Sheffield United will play Everton."

 

"Number 58."

 

"Oxford United."

 

"Number 32."

 

"Are at home to Queens Park Rangers."

 

"Number 11."

 

"Cardiff City."

 

"Number 22."

 

"Cardiff City will play Liverpool."

 

"Number 21."

 

"Leicester City."

 

"Number 29"

 

"Are at home to Norwich City."

 

"Number nine."

 

"Bristol City."

 

"Number 27."

 

"Will play Millwall."

 

"Number 26."

 

"Middlesbrough."

 

"Number 33."

 

"Will play Reading."

 

"Number 44."

 

"Wolverhampton Wanderers."

 

"Number 49."

 

"Are at home to Solihull Moors or AFC Fylde."

 

"Number 62."

 

"Northampton Town."

 

"Number 2."

 

"Northampton Town will play Arsenal."

 

"Number 47."

 

"AFC Wimbledon."

 

"Number 43."

 

"Are at home to Wigan Athletic."

 

"Number 17."

 

"Fulham."

 

"Number three."

 

"Will play Aston Villa."

 

"Number 13."

 

"Chelsea, your old club, who you won it with in 2007, going well this season."

 

"Number 28."

 

"Are at home to Newcastle United, who could probably do with you at the moment."

 

"Number 23."

 

"Luton Town."

 

"Number 31."

 

"Are at home to Preston North End."

 

"Number 24."

 

"Manchester City, another of your old clubs, and current holders."

 

"Number 6."

 

"Will play Blackburn Rovers."

 

"Number 63."

 

"Grimsby Town."

 

"Number 35."

 

"Are at home to Sheffield Wednesday."

 

"Number 64."

 

"Colchester United."

 

"Number seven."

 

"Will play Brentford."

 

"Number fourteen."

 

"Crystal Palace, finalists in 1990."

 

"Number 51."

 

"Will play Boreham Wood or Bristol Rovers. "

 

"Number 42."

 

"West Ham United."

 

"Number 25."

 

"Are at home to Manchester United."

 

"Number 54."

 

"Sutton United or Aldershot Town."

 

"Number 38."

 

"Will play Swansea City."

 

"Number 53." 

 

"Boston United or Burton Albion, who play their tie tomorrow night."

 

"Number 59."

 

"Are at home to Coventry City."

 

"Number one."

 

"AFC Bournemouth."

 

"Number eighteen."

 

"Will play Huddersfield Town."

 

"Number 48."

 

"Ipswich Town."

 

"Number 50."

 

"Are at home to Swindon Town."

 

"Number 45."

 

"Portsmouth."

 

"Number 41."

 

"Are at home to Tottenham Hotspur."

 

"Number 60."

 

"Exeter City."

 

"Number 30."

 

"Will play Nottingham Forest."

 

"Number 61."

 

"Fleetwood Town."

 

"Number four."

 

"Are at home to Barnsley."

 

"Number ten."

 

"Burnley."

 

"Number 41."

 

"Will play West Bromwich Albion."

 

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Chelsea's first game in December took them to The Etihad to face Manchester City. Spencer was determined to avoid a repeat of the six-goal thrashing that Guardiola's side had inflicted on Chelsea the previous season. Guardiola himself was fully aware of what Chelsea were capable of, saying that "They're performing better than many expected them to, ultimately the results don't lie though and they have to be treated as a very good side. They are where they are on merit."

 

Manchester City 

Ederson

Cancelo Stones Laporte Zinchenko

Fernandinho 

De Bruyne Silva 

Bernardo Agüero Sterling 

Substitutes: Bravo, Walker, Gündogan, Jesus, Foden, Otamendi, Mahrez

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

Azpilicueta Zouma Christensen Emerson 

Jorginho 

Kanté Kovacic 

Pulisic Giroud Willian 

Substitutes: Caballero, Rüdiger, Abraham, Mount, Hudson-Odoi, James, Tomori 

 

Referee: Michael Oliver 

 

Man City dominated the early stages and in the seventh minute, Bernardo Silva sought out Agüero, who drifted past Jorginho before sending a shot hopelessly wide. 

 

Six minutes later, Zinchenko got down the left and sent in a cross, which was headed clear by Christensen. Fernandinho recovered and passed to Cancelo, who looked for the run of Bernardo Silva. Bernardo centred the ball to Sterling, who headed over the bar. 

 

Chelsea began to work their way into the game, and in the 20th minute, a free kick from Kovacic was met by Zouma, whose header went just over. A minute later, David Silva sent a free kick into the area, where John Stones headed the ball onto the top of the bar.

 

In the 23rd minute, Azpilicueta sent a cross to the back post, where Willian saw his half volley saved by Ederson.

 

Just after the half hour mark, Kovacic sent a free kick into the area, which was punched out by Ederson. Jorginho got to the loose ball, and hit an optimistic effort which barely missed the target.

 

Three minutes before half time, De Bruyne exchanged passes with Fernandinho, before passing first time to Agüero. Agüero turned and struck a powerful shot into the net which Kepa had no chance of saving to give Man City the lead. 

 

"You were unlucky to go behind like that," Spencer said at half time, "But we've had chances and we're still in this. We can still get something out of this match."

 

However, barely 30 seconds into the half, a pass from Kanté was intercepted by De Bruyne, who got past Kovacic before passing to Silva. Silva passed back to Laporte, who sent it left to Zinchenko. Zinchenko passed back to Ederson, who hit a nice little ball forward to John Stones. Stones searched out Cancelo on the right, and Cancelo took the ball down the flank before dribbling past Willian and crossing to Sterling. Sterling's initial volley was saved by Kepa, but Sterling pounced on the rebound and steered it into the net to put City firmly in the driving seat. 

 

The hosts looked to increase their lead, and in the 51st minute, a free kick from De Bruyne was headed clear by Zouma. Kovacic took over, and played a long ball to Giroud as Chelsea looked to break. Giroud got to the edge of the box before passing to Emerson, who passed to Kovacic. Kovacic looked to bring Kanté into play, and Kanté exchanged passes with Jorginho before Jorginho sent the ball right to Azpilicueta. Pulisic then took over, and got past David Silva before his cross was headed clear by Cancelo.  Christensen was then caught napping by Agüero, and only a smart stop from Kepa prevented City from going further ahead. 

 

Agüero was withdrawn after the hour to make way for Gabriel Jesus, with the two Silvas following for Gündogan and Mahrez, while Pulisic and Kovacic were taken off for Mount and Hudson-Odoi respectively as the second half proved relatively quiet. In the second minute of added time, Azpilicueta centred the ball into the area, where Hudson-Odoi sent a header into the net to give Chelsea a consolation. 

 

Willian sent a free kick into the area in the dying seconds, but it was punched clear by Ederson as Man City claimed a vital win. 

 

Wednesday 4 December 2019, 20:00: Barclays Premier League - at The Etihad, Manchester 

Manchester City 2-1 Chelsea (Agüero 43, Sterling 46; Hudson-Odoi 90+2)

Attendance: 55,097 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Sergio Agüero

 

"I don't think I can fault any of you for that," Spencer said in the dressing room after the match, "You were unlucky not to get something from that."

 

Guardiola, in his post-match press conference, said that "Chelsea are still a very good side, but we outperformed them today."

 

Of course, the armchair managers had different views, with one saying "That's the end of our title chase, inexcusable performance in such a massive game." However, Chelsea remained second in the table, as at White Hart Lane, Jose Mourinho parked the bus against Liverpool and it paid off, with Tottenham grinding out a goalless draw. 

 

Other results:

Arsenal 2-0 Man Utd (Lacazette 19, Aubameyang 29

Bournemouth 0-1 West Ham (Yarmolenko 10)

Everton 4-0 Burnley (Iwobi 50, Sigurdsson 69, Gomes 73, Walcott 87)

Leicester 1-2 Crystal Palace (Morgan 51, Vardy s/o 73; Townsend 60, McArthur 90+1)

Newcastle 2-3 Brighton (Gayle 5, Lascelles 65; Duffy 25, Maupay 27, Mac Allister 45+2)

Norwich 3-1 Aston Villa (Stiepermann 13, Cantwell 49, Buendía 77; Trezeguet 3)

Tottenham 0-0 Liverpool 

Watford 1-3 Sheff Utd (Welbeck 39; Baldock 1, O'Connell 23, Fleck 51)

Wolves 4-2 Southampton (Jiménez 1, pen 37, Diogo Jota 45+2, 69; Adams 53, 56)

 

League Table:

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Man City       | 15    | 12    | 2     | 1     | 35    | 10    | 25    | 38    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Chelsea        | 15    | 10    | 3     | 2     | 28    | 10    | 18    | 33    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Liverpool      | 15    | 10    | 2     | 3     | 37    | 13    | 24    | 32    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Arsenal        | 15    | 10    | 1     | 4     | 24    | 12    | 12    | 31    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Wolves         | 15    | 8     | 2     | 5     | 29    | 16    | 13    | 26    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Man Utd        | 15    | 7     | 5     | 3     | 23    | 12    | 11    | 26    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Bournemouth    | 15    | 8     | 1     | 6     | 25    | 17    | 8     | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Norwich        | 15    | 8     | 1     | 6     | 20    | 21    | -1    | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Leicester      | 15    | 6     | 4     | 5     | 21    | 18    | 3     | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Everton        | 15    | 6     | 4     | 5     | 21    | 19    | 2     | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Tottenham      | 15    | 5     | 6     | 4     | 14    | 18    | -4    | 21    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Aston Villa    | 15    | 6     | 2     | 7     | 18    | 21    | -3    | 20    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Sheff Utd      | 15    | 5     | 3     | 7     | 15    | 20    | -5    | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | Burnley        | 15    | 4     | 5     | 6     | 14    | 20    | -6    | 17    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | Southampton    | 15    | 4     | 4     | 7     | 18    | 23    | -5    | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | Brighton       | 15    | 5     | 1     | 9     | 22    | 38    | -16   | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | West Ham       | 15    | 3     | 4     | 8     | 9     | 22    | -13   | 13    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | Watford        | 15    | 2     | 5     | 8     | 12    | 21    | -9    | 11    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Crystal Palace | 15    | 2     | 2     | 11    | 9     | 28    | -19   | 8     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 15    | 0     | 1     | 14    | 17    | 52    | -35   | 1     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

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intending to read this concurrently with my own thread (IE read your game as I play the same game in my save.) I've just lost to Liverpool in the Super Cup and then play West Ham next.

Congratulations on the Super Cup win and dominating performance!

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Thanks!

Chelsea hosted high-flying Wolves in their next match. However, Mateo Kovacic was not fully fit, and Spencer did not wish to risk him ahead of the game away to Tottenham. 

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

James Zouma Tomori Azpilicueta 

Jorginho 

Kanté Mount 

Willian Abraham Hudson-Odoi

Substitutes: Caballero, Rüdiger, Christensen, Barkley, Kovacic, Giroud, Pulisic 

 

Wolverhampton Wanderers 

Patricio 

Boly Coady Saïss

Doherty Moutinho Dendoncker Jonny

Traoré Jota Podence 

Substitutes: Ruddy, Kilman, Neves, Neto, Gibbs-White, Buur, Shabani

 

Referee: Jon Moss

 

A minute into the game, Hudson-Odoi got to the byline and pulled the ball back to Azpilicueta, who passed to Mount. Mount struck the ball, but his shot was blocked by Boly.

 

Six minutes later, James fed the ball down the line for Willian, who centred it. Hudson-Odoi got his head to it, but his header was saved by Patricio. 

 

In the eighteenth minute, Hudson-Odoi got down the left and passed back to Jorginho. Jorginho found Tomori, who passed 20 yards right to Zouma. Zouma passed to Jorginho, who knocked it out left for Hudson-Odoi. Hudson-Odoi passed back to Azpilicueta, who passed to Mount, who passed to Kanté. Kanté then exchanged passes with Jorginho, before passing to Willian, who played a quick one-two with James before getting into the area. His shot was blocked by Patricio, who also saved the rebound from Abraham. 

 

In the 24th minute, Mount looked down the line for Abraham, who passed into the area for Hudson-Odoi. Hudson-Odoi passed back to Mount, whose shot was charged down by Boly. 

 

Chelsea then won a corner, which was headed clear by Dendoncker. Hudson-Odoi lost the ball to Podence, and Traoré took off down the right before aiming a cross at the far post. Tomori headed clear, but Kepa had also gone for it, and Jota picked up the loose ball and found Doherty. Doherty found Podence in the area, and Kepa was caught in no-man's land as Podence got past him and put the ball into the net. 

 

Chelsea looked to get level, and in the 32nd minute, Willian played in Abraham, whose header was easily gathered by Patricio. 

 

Two minutes later, Podence was wide open again, but this time his shot was saved by Kepa. Dendoncker then came close, forcing another save from Kepa. 

 

Things went from bad to worse for Chelsea in the 43rd minute, when Willian was forced off with a groin injury. Just before half time, Kanté hit a one touch pass to Hudson-Odoi, who crossed into the area. The cross was met by Abraham, whose header was saved by Patricio. 

 

Wolves replaced Jonny with Kilman at half time. Chelsea looked to attack, and in the 55th minute, James found Pulisic, who hit a shot well wide. Wolves then went to the other end, and a searching pass from Kilman found Jota, whose shot was saved by Kepa. 

 

Three minutes later, Wolves looked to attack again, and only a last-ditch tackle by Tomori stopped Jota from getting into the area. Chelsea countered, but Abraham's shot was blocked by Saïss.

 

Jota and Moutinho made way for Neves and Neto, while Spencer took off Kanté for Giroud. In the 73rd minute, a Wolves attack broke down and Chelsea looked to counter. Mount passed to Giroud, who hit a 30 yard ball ahead of Abraham. Abraham passed to Hudson-Odoi, who hit a speculative shot over the bar. 

 

With nine minutes left, Neves looked forward to Podence. James, however, intercepted, and nodded the ball forward to Jorginho. Jorginho passed to Pulisic, who took the ball into the Wolves area before leading Abraham onto the ball. Abraham's shot, however, was saved by Patricio, and the flag went up for offside.

 

From the free kick, Saïss hit the ball forwards to Kilman. Kilman looked for a first time ball to Podence, who led Neto onto the ball. Neto got into the area before sending a shot beyond Kepa into the net to surely put the result beyond doubt, prompting a mass exodus of home supporters.

 

With two minutes left, Mount sent a corner into the area, where Coady headed clear. Pulisic got to the loose ball and passed to Mount, whose cross to the far post found Giroud. Giroud laid the ball off to Zouma, whose shot was blocked by Podence. Podence then robbed Jorginho, and only a save from Kepa stopped Neto from adding insult to injury. 

 

With time almost up, a low cross from Abraham found James, whose shot was saved by Patricio to sum up Chelsea's afternoon. The final whistle saw Spencer shake Nuno Espírito Santo's hand before heading for the dressing room to give his players the hairdryer.

 

Saturday 7 December 2019, 17:30: Barclays Premier League - at Stamford Bridge, London 

Chelsea 0-2 Wolverhampton Wanderers (Podence 25, Neto 82)

Attendance: 41,631 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Pedro Neto 

 

Spencer didn't hold back in the press conference either, saying that "It was an appalling result and I've made my feelings perfectly clear to the team. Instead of relaxing tomorrow, they'll be attending the post-mortem."

 

In what would become known as the "MONDAY MORNING MASSACRE" on the back page of the Sun, three Premier League managers lost their jobs following the weekend fixtures, although Spencer wasn't one of them. With Newcastle sitting bottom of the league with just a single point to their name, Mike Ashley ridded himself of Steve Bruce after several players made it clear that they had no confidence in him, with a 4-1 defeat at Bramall Lane being the final straw. David Moyes was also axed by West Ham after a 4-0 home defeat by Man City saw the Hammers slip into the bottom three, but the most high-profile sacking was a certain José Mourinho.

 

Following the Champions League Final, relations between Mauricio Pocchettino and Daniel Levy soured significantly, as Levy refused to release extra funds to strengthen the squad. As a result, Pocchettino left the club barely a month after leading Tottenham out in the Wanda Metropolitano. Mourinho was appointed but failed to mount anything resembling a run of form, let alone a title challenge, and failed to qualify for the knockout stage of the Champions League. A 1-0 defeat at Southampton sealed his fate.

 

Other results 

Saturday 

West Ham 0-4 Man City (Agüero pen 4, 9, Walker 23, Rodri 36)

Burnley 0-1 Leicester (Pereira pen 79)

Crystal Palace 3-1 Everton (Townsend 27, 61, Milivojevic 45+2; Sigurdsson pen 45+1)

Liverpool 3-0 Bournemouth (Keïta 61, Shaqiri 80, Matip 90)

Sheff Utd 4-1 Newcastle (Freeman 56, McBurnie 62, Besic 81, Sharp pen 87; Joelinton 43)

Southampton 1-0 Tottenham (Valery 2)

 

Sunday: 

Man Utd 3-0 Norwich (Lindelöf 12, Rashford 15, Fernandes 24)

Aston Villa 0-2 Arsenal (Aubameyang 16, Torreira 47)

 

Monday 

Brighton 0-2 Watford (Deulofeu 17, Pereyra 44)

 

League Table:

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Man City       | 16    | 13    | 2     | 1     | 39    | 10    | 29    | 41    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Liverpool      | 16    | 11    | 2     | 3     | 40    | 13    | 27    | 35    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Arsenal        | 16    | 11    | 1     | 4     | 26    | 12    | 14    | 34    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Chelsea        | 16    | 10    | 3     | 3     | 28    | 12    | 16    | 33    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Wolves         | 16    | 9     | 2     | 5     | 31    | 16    | 15    | 29    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Man Utd        | 16    | 8     | 5     | 3     | 26    | 12    | 14    | 29    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Bournemouth    | 16    | 8     | 1     | 7     | 25    | 20    | 5     | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Leicester      | 16    | 7     | 4     | 5     | 22    | 18    | 4     | 25    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Norwich        | 16    | 8     | 1     | 7     | 20    | 24    | -4    | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Everton        | 16    | 6     | 4     | 6     | 22    | 22    | 0     | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Sheff Utd      | 16    | 6     | 3     | 7     | 19    | 21    | -2    | 21    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Tottenham      | 16    | 5     | 6     | 5     | 14    | 19    | -5    | 21    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Aston Villa    | 16    | 6     | 2     | 8     | 18    | 23    | -5    | 20    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | Southampton    | 16    | 5     | 4     | 7     | 19    | 23    | -4    | 19    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | Burnley        | 16    | 4     | 5     | 7     | 14    | 21    | -7    | 17    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | Brighton       | 16    | 5     | 1     | 10    | 22    | 40    | -18   | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | Watford        | 16    | 3     | 5     | 8     | 14    | 21    | -7    | 14    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | West Ham       | 16    | 3     | 4     | 9     | 9     | 26    | -17   | 13    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Crystal Palace | 16    | 3     | 2     | 11    | 12    | 29    | -17   | 11    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 16    | 0     | 1     | 15    | 18    | 56    | -38   | 1     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

 

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With Chelsea safely through as group winners, the race for the second spot came down to the final game. Napoli had to win to go through and hope that Bayer Leverkusen failed to beat Slavia Prague. However, Spencer had no intention of doing Gennaro Gattuso's side any favours, although he replaced his entire back four following the debacle against Wolves. He also wanted his side to put in a good performance to arrest what was beginning to look like a slump. 

 

SSC Napoli 

Meret

Di Lorenzo Manolas Maksimovic Ghoulam

Demme 

Zielinski Allan 

Politano Milik Insigne 

Substitutes: Ospina, Rui, Callejón, Mertens, Lozano, Hysaj, Lobotka

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

Tomori Rüdiger Christensen Alonso 

Kovacic 

Barkley Mount 

Pulisic Batshuayi Pedro 

Substitutes: Caballero, Jorginho, Kanté, Hudson-Odoi, Giroud, Azpilicueta, Emerson 

 

Referee: Xavier Estrada (ESP)

 

Ils sont les meilleurs 

Sie sind die besten 

These are the Champions 

 

Die meister 

Die besten 

Les meilleurs équipes 

The Champions!

 

The first real chance came in the eighteenth minute, when a cross from Pulisic found Batshuayi. Batshuayi passed back to Barkley, whose shot was blocked. 

 

In the 39th minute, Tomori sent another cross to Batshuayi, whose header was saved by Meret.

 

Just before half time, Barkley played the ball to Pulisic, who got down the right before sending in a cross, which was caught by Meret. Napoli then countered, and Insigne sent a searching pass to Milik, who was denied by the linesman's flag.

 

As the half went on, some interesting scorelines emerged from elsewhere. Lille took the lead against Borussia Dortmund, briefly moving them above Juventus before the bianconeri retook the lead in Salzburg, while Atlético Madrid led in Munich. In the 57th minute, José Callejón replaced Matteo Politano. Ten minutes later, a counter-attack by Chelsea saw Pulisic go by Ghoulam and find Batshuayi, whose volley was deflected behind for a corner. Napoli then replaced Insigne with Lozano. 

 

Lozano's game, however, lasted barely a minute. As he took the ball down the wing, he was dispossessed by a superb sliding tackle from Tomori. However, he pulled a calf muscle as he went down, and was replaced by Dries Mertens. 

 

Three minutes later, Napoli won a corner. Mertens found Ghoulam, who headed the ball over the bar. 

 

As the clock ticked down, a Chelsea counter-attack saw Pulisic win a corner, which was cleared. 

 

Deep in stoppage time, news broke that Slavia Prague had snatched a winner against Bayer Leverkusen with virtually the last kick of the game. The Napoli fans urged their side on for the goal that would surely take them to the knockout stage, while in Prague, extremely nervous Welkschaft fans began chanting "Come on, Chelsea...Come on, Chelsea...Come on, Chelsea!"

 

Unfortunately for Napoli, Chelsea kept the ball throughout the final minute of added time, with Meret having to be alert to deny Hudson-Odoi a winner in the dying seconds.

 

Wednesday 11 December 2019, 20:00: UEFA Champions League Group G - at Stadio San Paolo, Naples 

SSC Napoli 0-0 Chelsea 

Attendance: 46,856 (799 away)

Man of the Match: Andreas Christensen 

 

The press were less than impressed with the result; Jamie Dingwall's match report in the Daily Mail carried the headline "SEE NAPLES AND DIE (OF BOREDOM)". Il Gazzetta Della Sport bore the headline "Probabilità di qualificazione al colpo del Napoli"

 

Group Tables:

| Pos | Inf   | Team       | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q1    | RB Leipzig | GER   | 6     | 3     | 2     | 1     | 8     | 4     | 4     | 11    | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd | Q2    | Valencia   | ESP   | 6     | 1     | 5     | 0     | 4     | 3     | 1     | 8     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | FC Porto   | POR   | 6     | 2     | 2     | 2     | 9     | 7     | 2     | 8     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Zenit      | RUS   | 6     | 0     | 3     | 3     | 3     | 10    | -7    | 3     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team          | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q1    | Barcelona     | ESP   | 6     | 6     | 0     | 0     | 18    | 2     | 16    | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd | Q2    | Ajax          | NED   | 6     | 3     | 0     | 3     | 7     | 8     | -1    | 9     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Atalanta      | ITA   | 6     | 3     | 0     | 3     | 8     | 11    | -3    | 9     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | FC Copenhagen | DEN   | 6     | 0     | 0     | 6     | 1     | 13    | -12   | 0     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team             | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q1    | Liverpool        | ENG   | 6     | 5     | 0     | 1     | 19    | 4     | 15    | 15    | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd | Q2    | Real Madrid      | ESP   | 6     | 5     | 0     | 1     | 13    | 3     | 10    | 15    | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Lokomotiv Moscow | RUS   | 6     | 1     | 1     | 4     | 2     | 17    | -15   | 4     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Club Brugge KV   | BEL   | 6     | 0     | 1     | 5     | 2     | 12    | -10   | 1     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team       | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q1    | Paris SG   | FRA   | 6     | 4     | 2     | 0     | 14    | 2     | 12    | 14    | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd | Q2    | SL Benfica | POR   | 6     | 3     | 2     | 1     | 9     | 5     | 4     | 11    | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Tottenham  | ENG   | 6     | 3     | 0     | 3     | 12    | 8     | 4     | 9     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | KRC Genk   | BEL   | 6     | 0     | 0     | 6     | 0     | 20    | -20   | 0     | 
| -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team                 | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q1    | Borussia Dortmund    | GER   | 6     | 4     | 1     | 1     | 14    | 8     | 6     | 13    | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd | Q2    | Juventus             | ITA   | 6     | 2     | 3     | 1     | 12    | 12    | 0     | 9     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | FC Red Bull Salzburg | AUT   | 6     | 1     | 2     | 3     | 7     | 9     | -2    | 5     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | LOSC Lille           | FRA   | 6     | 1     | 2     | 3     | 10    | 14    | -4    | 5     | 
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team              | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q1    | Bayern Munich	  | GER   | 6     | 2     | 3     | 1     | 9     | 6     | 3     | 9     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd | Q2    | Atlético Madrid   | ESP   | 6     | 2     | 2     | 2     | 8     | 5     | 3     | 8     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Celtic            | SCO   | 6     | 2     | 2     | 2     | 7     | 11    | -4    | 8     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Inter Milan       | ITA   | 6     | 1     | 3     | 2     | 5     | 7     | -2    | 6     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team                | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q1    | Chelsea             | ENG   | 6     | 4     | 2     | 0     | 8     | 2     | 6     | 14    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd | Q2    | Bayer 04 Leverkusen | GER   | 6     | 2     | 2     | 2     | 14    | 8     | 6     | 8     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | SSC Napoli          | ITA   | 6     | 2     | 2     | 2     | 8     | 9     | -1    | 8     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Slavia Prague       | CZE   | 6     | 1     | 0     | 5     | 3     | 14    | -11   | 3     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 


| Pos | Inf   | Team        | Nation| Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st | Q1    | Man City    | ENG   | 6     | 5     | 1     | 0     | 20    | 6     | 14    | 16    | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd | Q2    | Lyon        | FRA   | 6     | 3     | 1     | 2     | 7     | 8     | -1    | 10    | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd |       | Galatasaray | TUR   | 6     | 1     | 2     | 3     | 9     | 14    | -5    | 5     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th |       | Shakhtar    | UKR   | 6     | 1     | 0     | 5     | 4     | 12    | -8    | 3     | 
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

Other results:

Group A: RB Leipzig 2-0 FC Porto (Angeliño 48, Werner 59), Zenit 1-1 Valencia (Dzyuba 88; Rodrigo 34)

Group B: Ajax 2-1 Atalanta (Tadic pen 9, Tagliafico 60; Muriel 63), FC Copenhagen 0-1 Barcelona (Manaj 23)

Group C: Liverpool 2-1 Real Madrid (Alexander-Arnold 17, Salah 46; Casemiro 42), Lokomotiv Moscow 1-0 Club Brugge (Miranchuk 63; Naert s/o 62)

Group D: KRC Genk 0-2 Tottenham (Lamela 48, 68), Benfica 1-1 PSG (Ferro 79; Mbappé 37)

Group E: Red Bull Salzburg 1-3 Juventus (Okafor 51; Rabiot 20, 86, Alex Sandro 70), LOSC Lille 1-2 Borussia Dortmund (Gabriel 40; Haaland 58, Hazard 77)

Group F: Bayern Munich 0-2 Atlético Madrid (Félix 3, 87), Inter Milan 1-1 Celtic (Lukaku 82; Griffiths pen 86, Frimpong s/o 66)

Group G: Slavia Prague 1-0 Bayer Leverkusen (Tvrdik 90+4)

Group H: Galatasaray 2-2 Lyon (Séri 56, Büyük 80; Dembélé pen 31, 51), Man City 3-0 Shakhtar (Sterling 4, Bernardo 9, Agüero 20)

 

Europa League:

Group A: Arsenal 3-0 Ludogorets (McEneff 34, Nketiah 44, Nelson 45)

Group C: Man Utd 3-1 Rennes (Greenwood 26, James 39, 69; Raphinha 45+1)

Group D: Rangers 2-0 Astana (Ojo 23, Morelos 30, Goldson s/o 44)

Group I: Wolves 3-0 Olexandriya (Jiménez 25, pen 69, Podence 84, Kilman 85)

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Chelsea travelled to The Tottenham Hotspur Stadium looking to arrest their recent bad run. The home side sat 12th in the Premier League after parting company with Jose Mourinho. A joke going around Twitter among fans of numerous clubs featured Mourinho waking up to find Father Christmas in his room. Upon Mourinho asking if he was getting something, St Nicholas responded by saying "Yes, here you go, you're getting the sack." Spencer, however, was apprehensive, saying that "Often in these situations, you find that players have something to prove to any potential new manager." 

 

"Right," Spencer said in the dressing room, "You know how important this fixture is to the club, especially the supporters. And you owe the supporters after the fiasco against Wolves. Now go out there and make sure they go home happy!"

 

Tottenham were close to the bottom of the form table, but Spencer dismissed this, telling BT Sport that "Only a fool would disregard their ability in favour of form. They are a good team who are likely to be dangerous in trying to arrest this slide."

 

Tottenham Hotspur 

Lloris 

Aurier Sánchez Alderweireld Vertonghen 

Moura Dier Sissoko Bergwijn

Kane Alli

Substitutes: Gazzaniga, Davies, Fernandes, Son, Winks, Foyth, Lamela 

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

Azpilicueta Zouma Christensen Emerson 

Jorginho 

Kovacic Kanté 

Pulisic Abraham Hudson-Odoi 

Substitutes: Caballero, Rüdiger, Mount, Giroud, Tomori, James, Batshuayi 

 

Referee: Simon Hooper 

 

In the fifth minute, Kovacic robbed Sissoko and took the ball down the right. He got to the edge of the box and sent in a cross to Emerson, who headed the ball high over the bar. 

 

There was little to report as Chelsea edged the first half, but in the 38th minute, Vertonghen was shown a yellow card. A minute later, Hudson-Odoi sent a cross into the area for Pulisic, whose shot was blocked and the rebound deflected behind by Vertonghen. 

 

Three minutes into the second half, Christensen sent a free kick to Hudson-Odoi, who drilled a low cross to the far post only for it to be caught by Lloris. Hudson-Odoi then played in Azpilicueta, who sent the ball wide. 

 

In the 55th minute, Kanté looked for the run of Hudson-Odoi, who got into the area before striking a shot into the side netting.

 

A minute later, a cross from Vertonghen found Alli, whose header was saved by Kepa. In the 59th minute, Gedson Fernandes replaced Lucas Moura.

 

In the 63rd minute, Jorginho sent the ball down the left to Emerson. Emerson hit a cross towards the far post, and Tammy Abraham powered a header past Lloris to give Chelsea the lead. John Carver reacted by replacing Serge Aurier and Moussa Sissoko with Ben Davies and Son Heung-Min. 

 

Tottenham looked to respond almost immediately, and Bergwijn took the ball down the right before having a shot which was tipped behind by Kepa, with the resulting corner being headed clear by Zouma.

 

With twelve minutes left, Tottenham were awarded a free kick. A cross from Sánchez was headed clear by Zouma, and Chelsea attempted to break. Spencer then replaced a tiring Kovacic with Mount.

 

With two minutes left, Hudson-Odoi sent a free kick into the area, where Kanté saw a shot saved by Lloris. 

 

A minute later, Tottenham won a corner. Sánchez rose highest, but his header was cleared off the line by Azpilicueta.

 

In the fourth minute of stoppage time, a careless throw-in by Azpilicueta found Fernandes, who passed to Son. Son passed to Alli, who took off down the left before passing to Son. Kane rose highest to meet Son's cross, but his header went just over.

 

Saturday 14 December 2019, 12:30: Barclays Premier League - at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, London 

Tottenham Hotspur 0-1 Chelsea (Abraham 63)

Attendance: 62,303 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Jorginho

 

The other big story came from St James' Park the following day. Newcastle got their first win on the board in a dominant performance against none other than Manchester United, with Dwight Gayle scoring an injury time free kick. 

 

Other results 

Friday 

Bournemouth 1-3 Southampton (Solanke 86; Djenepo 14, 26, Vestergaard 39)

 

Saturday 

Everton 1-0 West Ham (Richarlison 2)

Norwich 0-0 Burnley 

Watford 1-1 Aston Villa (Welbeck 89; Samatta 53)

Man City 1-0 Crystal Palace (Otamendi 36)

Leicester 1-0 Brighton (Iheanacho 75)

 

Sunday 

Arsenal 1-1 Liverpool (Lacazette 88; Origi 33)

Newcastle 1-0 Man Utd (Gayle 90+2)

Wolves 1-0 Sheff Utd (Neves 5)

 

League Table 

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Man City       | 17    | 14    | 2     | 1     | 40    | 10    | 30    | 44    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Liverpool      | 17    | 11    | 3     | 3     | 41    | 14    | 27    | 36    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Chelsea        | 17    | 11    | 3     | 3     | 29    | 12    | 17    | 36    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Arsenal        | 17    | 11    | 2     | 4     | 27    | 13    | 14    | 35    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Wolves         | 17    | 10    | 2     | 5     | 32    | 16    | 16    | 32    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Man Utd        | 17    | 8     | 5     | 4     | 26    | 13    | 13    | 29    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Leicester      | 17    | 8     | 4     | 5     | 23    | 18    | 5     | 28    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Norwich        | 17    | 8     | 2     | 7     | 20    | 24    | -4    | 26    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Bournemouth    | 17    | 8     | 1     | 8     | 26    | 23    | 3     | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Everton        | 17    | 7     | 4     | 6     | 23    | 22    | 1     | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Southampton    | 17    | 6     | 4     | 7     | 22    | 24    | -2    | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Sheff Utd      | 17    | 6     | 3     | 8     | 19    | 22    | -3    | 21    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Aston Villa    | 17    | 6     | 3     | 8     | 19    | 24    | -5    | 21    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | Tottenham      | 17    | 5     | 6     | 6     | 14    | 20    | -6    | 21    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | Burnley        | 17    | 4     | 6     | 7     | 14    | 21    | -7    | 18    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | Brighton       | 17    | 5     | 1     | 11    | 22    | 41    | -19   | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | Watford        | 17    | 3     | 6     | 8     | 15    | 22    | -7    | 15    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | West Ham       | 17    | 3     | 4     | 10    | 9     | 27    | -18   | 13    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Crystal Palace | 17    | 3     | 2     | 12    | 12    | 30    | -18   | 11    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 17    | 1     | 1     | 15    | 19    | 56    | -37   | 4     |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

 

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Monday morning saw the draw for the UEFA Champions League round of sixteen. As group winners, Chelsea could be drawn against any runner-up aside from Bayer Leverkusen. 

 

Seeded Teams: RB Leipzig (GER), Barcelona (ESP), Liverpool (ENG), PSG (FRA), Borussia Dortmund (GER), Bayern Munich (GER), Chelsea (ENG), Man City (ENG)

 

Unseeded teams: Valencia (ESP), Ajax (NED), Real Madrid (ESP), Benfica (POR), Juventus (ITA), Atlético Madrid (ESP), Bayer Leverkusen (GER), Lyon (FRA)

 

"The first team out," the UEFA official said, "is Atlético Madrid. They cannot be drawn against Barcelona or Bayern Munich. They will play...Liverpool."

 

"Lyon cannot be drawn against Paris Saint-Germain or Manchester City. They will play...RB Leipzig."

 

"Valencia cannot be drawn against Barcelona. They will play...Paris Saint-Germain."

 

"Juventus cannot be drawn against Borussia Dortmund. They will play...Bayern Munich."

 

"Benfica can be drawn against any of the remaining seeded teams. They will play...Chelsea."

 

"Bayer Leverkusen cannot be drawn against Borussia Dortmund. They will play...Barcelona."

 

"Real Madrid will play...Manchester City. Which means that Ajax will play Borussia Dortmund."

 

UEFA Champions League Round of 16 Draw in Full:

Atlético Madrid vs Liverpool 

Lyon vs RB Leipzig 

Valencia vs PSG 

Juventus vs Bayern Munich 

Benfica vs Chelsea 

Bayer Leverkusen vs Barcelona 

Real Madrid vs Man City 

Ajax vs Borussia Dortmund

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The fifth round of the Carabao Cup saw Chelsea lock horns with Manchester United for a place in the semi finals. There was an added incentive to the match as Spencer was still looking to sign Pogba in January.

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

Tomori Rüdiger Christensen Alonso 

Jorginho 

Kanté Mount 

Pulisic Giroud Pedro 

Substitutes: Caballero, Azpilicueta, Kovacic, Abraham, Emerson, Barkley, Batshuayi 

 

Man Utd 

De Gea

Wan-Bissaka Lindelöf Maguire Shaw

Fernandes Pogba 

Lingard Mata Martial 

Ighalo 

Substitutes: Romero, Tuanzebe, Fred, Greenwood, McTominay, Williams, James 

 

Referee: Nigel Lugg

 

In the tenth minute, Jorginho hit a long ball to Pulisic, who headed it on to Giroud. Giroud passed back to Pulisic, whose shot was blocked. 

 

In the 23rd minute, Lingard intercepted a pass from Pulisic, and passed through to Mata. Mata sent the ball left to Martial, who found Fernandes. Fernandes lost the ball to Kanté, who passed to Giroud. Giroud found Pulisic, who took the ball down the right before sending the ball across to Pedro. Pedro got into the area before going for glory, with De Gea having to be at full strength to keep the shot out.

 

Four minutes later, Rüdiger moved the ball forward to Kanté, who passed to Pulisic. Pulisic fed Giroud in an advanced position, and Giroud passed down the line for Tomori. Tomori played the ball to Pulisic's feet, and Pulisic played a one-two with Giroud before taking a shot which crashed in off the crossbar to give Chelsea the lead. 

 

In the 31st minute, Chelsea won a corner. Alonso's corner was cleared by Wan-Bissaka, but Rüdiger recovered and played a smart one-two with Kanté before passing back to Tomori. Tomori looked for the run of Pulisic, but Shaw intercepted. Chelsea recovered, however, and Pulisic saw a shot tipped over by De Gea. 

 

Three minutes later, Martial played in Pogba, who sent a shot inches wide.

 

In the final minute of the first half, Man Utd won a corner. Mata sent the ball into the area, where Pogba had a shot blocked by Rüdiger before Martial hit a hopeful shot at Kepa. 

 

In the first minute of the second half, Pulisic received the ball and cut inside before seeing a shot tipped behind by De Gea.

 

In the 52nd minute, a throw-in by Tomori found Giroud, who passed back to Tomori. Tomori passed to Pulisic, who got into the area before being tripped by Shaw. Jorginho sent the penalty into the bottom corner, giving De Gea no chance. 

 

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer replaced Lingard with Fred, but Chelsea still dominated. In the 63rd minute, Pulisic once again got the better of Shaw and passed to Giroud, whose shot was blocked by Wan-Bissaka. Solskjaer then replaced Mata with Daniel James.

 

Two minutes later, Wan-Bissaka sent the ball into the area. Tomori headed clear, but Martial recovered and fed the ball right to Pogba. Pogba went for goal, but hit his shot high over the bar. 

 

The game largely petered out afterwards, but in the final minute of stoppage time, Man Utd won a corner. Fernandes' ball was met by Lindelöf, whose header rattled the crossbar before Alonso cleared it behind. Fernandes sent the ball to Pogba, whose header was tipped over by Kepa. Fernandes found Lindelöf from the corner, but his header was saved by Kepa. 

 

Tuesday 17 December 2019, 19:45: Carabao Cup Fifth Round - at Stamford Bridge, London 

Chelsea 2-0 Manchester United (Pulisic 28, Jorginho pen 52)

Attendance: 40,712 (2,081 away)

Man of the Match: Christian Pulisic 

 

"So, a good victory for Chelsea," Scott Minto said in the Sky Sports studio, "You've got to be pleased with that, John."

 

"Yeah, of course," John Terry replied, "You look at how they dominated the game, they deserved to win by more."

 

"Look, as good as Chelsea were," Graeme Souness interjected, "You have to say that Pogba didn't do nearly enough out there."

 

Other results:

Tuesday:

Crystal Palace 1-0 Leicester (Townsend 47)

 

Wednesday:

Everton 3-0 Bournemouth (Iwobi 41, 44, Richarlison 70)

QPR 1-4 Arsenal (Hugill 44; Pépé 62, 67, Lacazette 76, David Luiz 90+1)

 

IFA Club World Cup semi final 

Liverpool 4-0 Al-Sadd (Mané 10, Firmino 24, Henderson 67, Gomez 84)

 

The draw for the semi finals took place the following Friday. 

 

"Number three, Crystal Palace," the announcer said, "Will play...Number two, Everton. Therefore, Number four, Chelsea, will play number one, Arsenal."

Edited by Drogba11CFC

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In their final game before Christmas, Chelsea hosted a Watford side struggling in seventeenth. Spencer wanted to take full advantage of Liverpool's participation in the Club World Championship to keep pace with runaway leaders Manchester City. 

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

James Tomori Zouma Azpilicueta 

Jorginho 

Kovacic Mount 

Pulisic Abraham Hudson-Odoi 

Substitutes: Caballero, Rüdiger, Christensen, Kanté, Pedro, Giroud, Emerson 

 

Watford 

Foster 

Janmaat Cathcart Kabasele Chalobah Masina

Deulofeu Capoue Doucouré Pereyra 

Deeney 

Substitutes: Bachmann, Holebas, Hughes, Welbeck, Sarr, Dawson, Quina

 

Referee: André Marriner 

 

Chelsea had their first chance in the second minute, as Jorginho played a one-two with Kovacic before passing to Hudson-Odoi, who cut inside before passing to Kovacic. Kovacic then exchanged passes with Reece James, before hitting a shot which Foster saved before James was flagged offside. 

 

Three minutes later, Chelsea were awarded a free kick when Zouma was fouled by Doucouré. The initial ball was headed clear but Jorginho won it back and sent it to Kovacic. Kovacic got into the area and had a shot which was saved by Foster. 

 

In the seventh minute, Azpilicueta tripped Deulofeu, and received a yellow card. 

 

A minute later, Abraham received the ball on the left and passed to Mount. Mount sent in a cross, which which was headed clear by Kabasele. James picked up the loose ball and fired low towards the far post, only for Cathcart to head clear. Chelsea won the ball back, and James sent in another cross, which was deflected behind. Mount sent the corner to Abraham, whose header went over the bar. 

 

In the eleventh minute, James laid the ball back to Jorginho, who exchanged passes with Mount before finding Azpilicueta on the left. Azpilicueta and Jorginho exchanged a series of passes before Jorginho angled a 35 yard pass to James. James then passed back to Jorginho before receiving the ball back from Kovacic. Kovacic then took over and sent a cross across goal, which was cleared behind. From the corner, Kovacic was fouled just outside the box, and the resulting free kick was headed clear.

 

Chelsea were awarded another free kick in the 13th minute, for a foul on Hudson-Odoi by Janmaat. James stepped up, but his effort struck the wall, with the resulting corner being caught by Foster. 

 

Seven minutes later, a Reece James throw-in found Pulisic, who passed to Abraham. Abraham whipped in a cross to Hudson-Odoi, whose header went sailing over the crossbar. 

 

In the 27th minute, Kovacic sent a ball to Pulisic, who received it just inside the area before firing in a half volley which was tipped behind by Foster. 

 

In first half stoppage time, Chelsea were awarded a free kick after Capoue upended Pulisic. Mount struck it, but only hit the side netting. 

 

Eight minutes into the second half, Azpilicueta gave possession away cheaply from a throw-in. Troy Deeney took the ball down the right and tried a give and go with Doucouré before losing possession to Azpilicueta at the byline. Mount lost possession to Deulofeu, however, and Deulofeu passed back to Capoue, who passed to Doucouré. Doucouré hit a searching pass to Pereyra, who got into the area before taking a shot which was turned around the post by Kepa, with Zouma heading the resulting corner clear. Hudson-Odoi then took the ball up the other end, before losing possession to Capoue. Azpilicueta got the ball back and passed to Jorginho, who played it to Kovacic. Kovacic passed to the feet of James, and James passed to Pulisic. Pulisic surged past Pereyra before passing back to James, whose cross was headed into Foster's hands by Abraham. On the hour mark, Troy Deeney was withdrawn, with Will Hughes coming on.

 

In the 63rd minute, a long goal kick from Foster found Deulofeu, who passed to Doucouré. Doucouré played a one-two with Capoue before passing to Hughes, who passed back to Cathcart. Cathcart sent a 40 yard ball to Janmaat, who fed the ball left to Hughes. Hughes' pass to Pereyra was intercepted by Jorginho, who passed to Azpilicueta. Azpilicueta played the ball to Hudson-Odoi, who sprayed the ball out right to Pulisic. Pulisic was tackled by Pereyra, but James regained possession and crossed into the area. Janmaat headed clear, but Azpilicueta recovered and passed to Mount, who played a quick pass into the area. Hudson-Odoi went for goal, but his shot was tipped over by Foster. Chelsea then replaced Hudson-Odoi with Pedro.

 

Three minutes later, a long ball from Kovacic found Pulisic, who got into the area. He got past Masina only to be brought down, and André Marriner pointed to the spot. Jorginho stepped up and sent Foster the wrong way to give Chelsea the lead. 

 

Etienne Capoue and Daryl Janmaat were replaced by Domingos Quina Craig Dawson, and in the 73rd minute, a long ball from Mount found James, who fired a low cross towards the far post which was cleared by Dawson. Watford then countered, and Pereyra broke the offside trap to receive the ball and take a shot which was deflected behind by Reece James. 

 

Three minutes later, Mount passed to Azpilicueta, who passed to Kovacic. Kovacic sent the ball forward to Azpilicueta, who got past Hughes before looking for Pedro in the area. Pedro hit a hopeful looking shot, which was secured by Foster, before Giroud came on for Abraham. 

 

Watford barely threatened, but they had one last chance in stoppage time. Quina received the ball from Masina's throw-in and looked to put the ball into the box for Hughes. Hughes, however, didn't see it, and the ball was easily caught by Kepa. Chelsea then countered, with Kovacic forcing a save from Foster. 

 

Saturday 21 December 2019, 15:00: Barclays Premier League - at Stamford Bridge, London 

Chelsea 1-0 Watford (Jorginho pen 66)

Attendance: 41,631 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Jorginho 

 

There was another managerial casualty following the weekend's fixtures, as Crystal Palace parted company with Roy Hodgson following a 3-1 defeat at home to Arsenal. Meanwhile, Marcelo Bielsa left Leeds to join Tottenham, whilst Sam Allardyce returned to West Ham and Newcastle appointed Quique Sánchez Flores.

 

Other results:

 

Friday 

Aston Villa 1-3 Everton (Samatta 31; Bernard 3, Calvert-Lewin 46, Walcott 54)

 

Saturday 

Burnley 0-1 Man City (Agüero 30)

Southampton 0-1 Norwich (Rupp 69)

West Ham 1-2 Newcastle (Haller 79; Bentaleb 5, Saint-Maximin 77)

Man Utd 1-0 Wolves (Fernandes 52)

 

Sunday 

Brighton 0-3 Tottenham (Dier 11, Kane pen 26, Sánchez 90)

Crystal Palace 1-3 Arsenal (McArthur 66; Aubameyang 71, 90, Torreira 76)

 

Monday 

Sheff Utd 2-0 Bournemouth (Ramsdale og 49, Freeman 77)

 

League Table 

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Man City       | 18    | 15    | 2     | 1     | 41    | 10    | 31    | 47    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Chelsea        | 18    | 12    | 3     | 3     | 30    | 12    | 18    | 39    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Arsenal        | 18    | 12    | 2     | 4     | 30    | 14    | 16    | 38    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Liverpool      | 17    | 11    | 3     | 3     | 41    | 14    | 27    | 36    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Wolves         | 18    | 10    | 2     | 6     | 32    | 17    | 15    | 32    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Man Utd        | 18    | 9     | 5     | 4     | 27    | 13    | 14    | 32    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Norwich        | 18    | 9     | 2     | 7     | 21    | 24    | -3    | 29    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Leicester      | 17    | 8     | 4     | 5     | 23    | 18    | 5     | 28    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Everton        | 18    | 8     | 4     | 6     | 26    | 23    | 3     | 28    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Bournemouth    | 18    | 8     | 1     | 9     | 26    | 25    | 1     | 25    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Sheff Utd      | 18    | 7     | 3     | 8     | 21    | 22    | -1    | 24    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Tottenham      | 18    | 6     | 6     | 6     | 17    | 20    | -3    | 24    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Southampton    | 18    | 6     | 4     | 8     | 22    | 25    | -3    | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | Aston Villa    | 18    | 6     | 3     | 9     | 20    | 27    | -7    | 21    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | Burnley        | 18    | 4     | 6     | 8     | 14    | 22    | -8    | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | Brighton       | 18    | 5     | 1     | 12    | 22    | 44    | -22   | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | Watford        | 18    | 3     | 6     | 9     | 15    | 23    | -8    | 15    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | West Ham       | 18    | 3     | 4     | 11    | 10    | 29    | -19   | 13    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Crystal Palace | 18    | 3     | 2     | 13    | 13    | 33    | -20   | 11    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 18    | 2     | 1     | 15    | 21    | 57    | -36   | 7     | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

 

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Chelsea faced Manchester United again in the Boxing Day match at Stamford Bridge. Despite being a 3pm kick off, the match was broadcast live on Amazon. The Blues, however, were missing Kanté through a twisted ankle, while Jorginho had suffered food poisoning a few days before the match but was available. 

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

Azpilicueta Zouma Christensen Emerson 

Jorginho 

Kovacic Mount 

Pulisic Abraham Hudson-Odoi 

Substitutes: Caballero, Rüdiger, Alonso, Barkley, Giroud, James, Tomori 

 

Man Utd 

De Gea

Wan-Bissaka Lindelöf Maguire Shaw

Fred Pogba 

Mata Fernandes Martial 

Ighalo 

Substitutes: Romero, Tuanzebe, James, Greenwood, McTominay, Dalot, Pereira 

 

Referee: Lee Mason 

 

In the second minute, Pulisic was fouled by Maguire, who received a yellow card. Two minutes later, a sloppy pass from Maguire was intercepted by Abraham, who moved the ball to Hudson-Odoi. Hudson-Odoi got to the edge of the box before passing to Jorginho, who played in Emerson. Emerson's cross was blocked by Wan-Bissaka, but Hudson-Odoi picked up the loose ball before squaring to Mount, whose shot struck the post before being cleared behind by Shaw, with the resulting corner being cleared by Maguire. 

 

With ten minutes gone, a throw-in saw Abraham pass to Azpilicueta. Azpilicueta's cross was headed clear by Maguire, but only as far as Mount, who exchanged passes with Jorginho. Mount then sent the ball back to Zouma, who passed to Azpilicueta. Azpilicueta laid the ball forward to Pulisic, who sent in a shot which was saved by De Gea before Maguire cleared. From the throw-in, Azpilicueta sent in a cross that Hudson-Odoi turned into the net. As Chelsea celebrated, however, Lee Mason made the "screen gesture", before VAR disallowed the goal for offside, prompting a chorus of "**** VAR" from the Chelsea faithful.

 

United had their first real chance in the 20th minute, as Mata sent a free kick into the area, which Emerson headed clear. Mason Mount took over and put the ball into space for Abraham, who got into the area and hit a shot at De Gea. 

 

Six minutes later, United were awarded another free kick. Mata sent the ball into the area, only for it to be easily caught by Kepa. Chelsea then went on the counter, and a cross from Hudson-Odoi found Abraham, whose header was saved by De Gea. 

 

In the 30th minute, Chelsea won a corner, which Martial headed clear. Chelsea regained possession and Hudson-Odoi sent in a cross, which Martial headed clear. Pulisic then surged past Shaw into the area before going for goal, only for his shot to be saved by De Gea. 

 

Four minutes later, a pass from Jorginho found Azpilicueta, who moved the ball onto Kovacic. Kovacic passed to Jorginho, who sprayed the ball to Emerson on the left. Emerson centred the ball to Pulisic, whose header from point-blank range was diverted over the bar by the fingertips of De Gea. Hudson-Odoi then saw a shot blocked by Wan-Bissaka. 

 

In the 42nd minute, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Kovacic's ball was headed clear by Wan-Bissaka, but only as far as Mount. Mount played it square to Kovacic, who passed to Pulisic, and Pulisic sent a shot into the side netting. 

 

Pogba was withdrawn in the 56th minute to be replaced by Pereira, with Daniel James replacing Ighalo six minutes later as United looked to park the bus. In the 65th minute, Daniel James took the ball into the Chelsea area before leading Martial onto the ball. Martial had a shot, which Kepa pushed away before Christensen cleared. 

 

In the 72nd minute, a free kick from Mata was headed clear by Pulisic, but only as far as Lindelöf. Lindelöf went for goal, but Kepa saved it. Pereira went for the follow up, but his shot was blocked by Emerson. 

 

As the clock ticked down, Pulisic was replaced by Ross Barkley. With 14 minutes left, Azpilicueta sent a cross to Abraham, whose header found Kovacic. Kovacic went for goal, but sent the ball wide. 

 

In the 83rd minute, Fred played a one-two with Shaw before passing to Daniel James. James forced a save from Kepa, but the offside flag went up.

 

A minute later, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Kovacic sent the ball into the area to Zouma, who headed just over the bar. 

 

In stoppage time, Jorginho sent a long ball over the top for Abraham, who ran onto it. With plenty of time, he went for the near post, only for his shot to be tipped behind by De Gea before being called back for offside. 

 

Thursday 26 December 2019, 15:00: Barclays Premier League - at Stamford Bridge, London 

Chelsea 0-0 Manchester United 

Attendance: 41,631 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: David De Gea 

 

Other results:

Watford 1-3 Everton (Pereyra 42; Iwobi 8, Delph 60, Calvert-Lewin 84)

Aston Villa 3-0 Southampton (Mings 30, Konsa 38, McGinn 90+3)

Crystal Palace 1-3 Newcastle (Sakho 6; Joelinton 11, Bentaleb pen 23, Saint-Maximin 28)

Liverpool 2-1 Burnley (Mané 19, Salah 22; Tarkowski 9)

Sheff Utd 1-1 Brighton (O'Connell 49; Bissouma 81)

Tottenham 2-1 Arsenal (Winks 42, Kane 88; Özil 26)

West Ham 3-1 Norwich (Yarmolenko 2, Haller 4, Masuaku 52; Godfrey 23)

Wolves 3-0 Leicester (Boly 2, Traoré 63, Jiménez 88)

Man City 4-1 Bournemouth (H. Wilson og 2, Foden 20, Bernardo 54, 67; Ibe 90+4)

 

League Table:

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Man City       | 19    | 16    | 2     | 1     | 45    | 11    | 34    | 50    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Chelsea        | 19    | 12    | 4     | 3     | 30    | 12    | 18    | 40    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Liverpool      | 18    | 12    | 3     | 3     | 43    | 15    | 28    | 39    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Arsenal        | 19    | 12    | 2     | 5     | 31    | 16    | 15    | 38    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Wolves         | 19    | 11    | 2     | 6     | 35    | 17    | 18    | 35    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Man Utd        | 19    | 9     | 6     | 4     | 27    | 13    | 14    | 33    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Everton        | 19    | 9     | 4     | 6     | 29    | 24    | 5     | 31    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Norwich        | 19    | 9     | 2     | 8     | 22    | 27    | -5    | 29    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Leicester      | 18    | 8     | 4     | 6     | 23    | 21    | 2     | 28    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Tottenham      | 19    | 7     | 6     | 6     | 19    | 21    | -2    | 27    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Sheff Utd      | 19    | 7     | 4     | 8     | 22    | 23    | -1    | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Bournemouth    | 19    | 8     | 1     | 10    | 27    | 29    | -2    | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Aston Villa    | 19    | 7     | 3     | 9     | 23    | 27    | -4    | 24    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | Southampton    | 19    | 6     | 4     | 9     | 22    | 28    | -6    | 22    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | Burnley        | 19    | 4     | 6     | 9     | 15    | 24    | -9    | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | Brighton       | 19    | 5     | 2     | 12    | 23    | 45    | -22   | 17    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | West Ham       | 19    | 4     | 4     | 11    | 13    | 30    | -17   | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | Watford        | 19    | 3     | 6     | 10    | 16    | 26    | -10   | 15    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Crystal Palace | 19    | 3     | 2     | 14    | 14    | 36    | -22   | 11    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 19    | 3     | 1     | 15    | 24    | 58    | -34   | 10    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 



 

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Chelsea faced Brighton at the Amex in their second game in three days. As such, Spencer rang the changes, although he was forced to play Christensen in the defensive midfield role.

 

Brighton and Hove Albion 

Ryan 

Duffy Webster Dunk

Schelotto Pröpper Mooy Bernardo 

Groß Mac Allister 

Maupay 

Substitutes: Button, Burn, Trossard, Connolly, Alzate, Lamptey, Bissouma

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

James Tomori Rüdiger Alonso 

Christensen 

Barkley Kovacic 

Pulisic Giroud Pedro 

Substitutes: Caballero, Jorginho, Willian, Abraham, Mount, Hudson-Odoi, Azpilicueta 

 

Referee: Mike Dean 

 

The first incident occurred in the seventh minute, as Pedro was shown a yellow card for a foul on Groß.

 

Four minutes later, Chelsea won a corner. Alonso's ball was cleared by Mac Allister, but Rüdiger recovered and sent a header towards goal which was saved by Ryan. 

 

A Brighton attack then broke down and Christensen sent a long ball to Pulisic. Pulisic's header was saved by Dunk, but Mooy lost the ball to Barkley, who drifted past him and took the ball deep into the Brighton half before passing to Kovacic. Kovacic then played the ball back to Alonso, who passed down the line for Pedro. Pedro ran onto the loose ball and sent in a cross to Giroud, who headed home at the near post to give Chelsea the lead.

 

Brighton looked to get back into the match, and in the 18th minute, Maupay volleyed the ball wide. Chelsea set up a counter attack, which saw Reece James' lofted pass intercepted by Groß.

 

Brighton had better luck in the 20th minute, however. Bernardo received the ball from Maupay and sent in a cross to the far post. Alonso misjudged his header, and Schelotto's downward header slipped through Kepa's fingers into the net. 

 

Chelsea looked to retain their lead, and in the 25th minute, Reece James saw a cross punched clear by Ryan. In the 29th minute, Brighton won a corner, which was headed clear by Rüdiger. 

 

In the 30th minute, Brighton broke again, but Mac Allister was fouled by James, earning him a yellow card. Mooy's free kick evaded everyone, going out for a goal kick. 

 

In the 38th minute, Brighton were awarded a free kick after Alonso obstructed Schelotto. Duffy sent the ball to Mac Allister, who cushioned a headed pass to Maupay. Maupay passed to Bernardo, who took advantage of James' missed interception and sent the ball past Kepa to give Brighton the lead.

 

Chelsea now looked to respond immediately, and in the 42nd minute, Kovacic won possession and took the ball into the Brighton half before winning a corner off Duffy, which was headed clear by Groß. Brighton then went up the other end, with Schelotto getting into the area before the flag went up for offside.

 

Right at the end of the half, Reece James sent a hopeful cross which was saved by Ryan. Alonso then won a throw-in and threw the ball to Giroud, who passed back to Alonso. Alonso played the ball ahead looking for Barkley, but Dunk intercepted. Tomori won the ball back and passed to to Barkley, who tried to find Pulisic. Pulisic brought Pedro into play with a searching pass, and Pedro crossed for Pulisic. Pulisic played the ball back for Alonso, who won another throw-in. Alonso threw the ball to Kovacic, who headed it back to Christensen. Christensen passed to Alonso, who passed it back. Christensen passed back to Alonso, who passed to Pedro. Pedro passed to Kovacic, who hit a 35 yard ball ahead of James. James exchanged passes with Pulisic, who took over and saw a cross headed clear. Barkley intercepted and sent a cross to Giroud, who volleyed wide when it was easier to score. 

 

Brighton started the second half brightly, with Schelotto meeting Maupay's 49th-minute cross with a header that didn't trouble Kepa. Chelsea then looked to turn the screw, with Pulisic forcing a corner. Alonso's corner was met by Giroud, whose header was tipped over by Ryan. 

 

In the 56th minute, Giroud was brought down by Bernardo. Kovacic sent the free kick into the area, with Tomori sending a header over. 

 

Just before the hour mark, a throw-in by Alonso was headed down by Giroud to Kovacic. Kovacic passed back to Giroud, who looked right and spotted the run of James. James knocked the ball to Pulisic, who sent a half volley fizzing into the net with Ryan stranded. It was described as "A wonderful goal" on Radio 5 Live, and Chelsea now looked to go push on. 

 

In the 64th minute, Barkley sent the ball to Pulisic, who got into the area before Dunk tackled him at the expense of a corner. Spencer replaced James with Azpilicueta, before Alonso's corner found Giroud, whose header deflected off the crossbar. 

 

In the 71st minute, a free kick from Kovacic was headed clear, but only as far as Pedro. Pedro passed back to Kovacic, who delivered the ball into the area, but Schelotto headed clear. Maupay looked to set up an attack, but he was tackled by Alonso. Pulisic then played a one-two with Barkley before getting into the area and seeing a shot saved by Ryan. A minute later, Brighton replaced Mac Allister with Alzate while Mount came on to replace Kovacic. 

 

With fifteen minutes left, Alonso lost the ball to Schelotto, who took off down the right before spreading the play to Groß. Groß tried his luck, but Kepa got up to tip the ball over. The resulting corner found Duffy, whose header was acrobatically tipped over by Kepa. This time, the corner was headed clear by Rüdiger, and Giroud played in Pedro, who got into the area before his cross was headed clear by Dunk. Maupay took the ball into the Chelsea half but was block-tackled by Tomori, who angled it down the line for Pulisic. Pulisic was dispossessed by Bernardo for a corner, and Hudson-Odoi came on to replace Pedro. Alonso's corner was cleared by Duffy but only as far as Hudson-Odoi, whose shot was saved by Ryan. Brighton then replaced Schelotto with Tariq Lamptey.

 

In the 79th minute, Barkley intercepted a clearance and passed to Christensen, who struck a low pass to Pulisic. Pulisic passed back to Azpilicueta, who played a series of passes with Christensen before passing to Barkley. Barkley passed back to Azpilicueta, who hit the ball left to Mason Mount. Mount brought Giroud into play, and Giroud passed to Hudson-Odoi, who drove the ball ahead of Pulisic. Pulisic hit a hopeful-looking shot, which hit the side netting. 

 

In the 81st minute, Mount went by Lamptey and took a shot which was blocked by Duffy. Mount's corner was cleared by Dunk to Alzate. Alzate looked to start an attack, but he was fouled by Pulisic, who received a yellow card. 

 

In the final minute of normal time, Rüdiger scrambled a throw-in to Giroud, who took the ball over the halfway line before losing it to Duffy. Duffy looked for Trossard, but the offside flag went up. Rüdiger passed to Alonso, who found Hudson-Odoi. Hudson-Odoi produced a fine piece of skill to get away from Pröpper, and took the ball into the area before being tackled by Dunk.

 

In the second minute of stoppage time, Azpilicueta sent a cross into the area. Lamptey's clearance was intercepted by Mount, who passed to Barkley. Barkley passed to Giroud, who was caught offside. 

 

In the final minute of stoppage time, Chelsea were awarded a free kick for offside. A long ball from Barkley found Hudson-Odoi, but Mike Dean inexplicably blew the final whistle just as Hudson-Odoi prepared to send in a cross.

 

Saturday 28 December 2019, 15:00: Barclays Premier League - at American Express Community Stadium, Brighton 

Brighton and Hove Albion 2-2 Chelsea (Schelotto 20, Bernardo 38; Giroud 14, Pulisic 61)

Attendance: 30,666 (3,000 away)

Man of the Match: Bernardo 

 

Other results: 

Saturday 

Man Utd 1-2 Liverpool (Ighalo 90; Origi 58, Firmino 64)

Arsenal 1-3 Wolves (Ceballos 6; Moutinho pen 9, Boly 22, Campana 90+1)

Burnley 1-3 West Ham (Gudmundsson 12; Ajeti 17, Sánchez 87, Mee og 90)

Everton 4-2 Sheff Utd (Gomes 1, Bernard 24, Calvert-Lewin 26, Davies 73; McBurnie 6, Zivkovic 87)

Norwich 2-0 Crystal Palace (Godfrey 82, Stiepermann 90+1)

Southampton 0-0 Watford 

Newcastle 0-2 Man City (Gabriel Jesus 59, 73)

 

Sunday 

Bournemouth 2-2 Tottenham (King 17, 74; Lo Celso 60, Lucas Moura 70)

Leicester 0-0 Aston Villa 

 

League Table:

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Man City       | 20    | 17    | 2     | 1     | 47    | 11    | 36    | 53    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Liverpool      | 19    | 13    | 3     | 3     | 45    | 16    | 29    | 42    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Chelsea        | 20    | 12    | 5     | 3     | 32    | 14    | 18    | 41    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Wolves         | 20    | 12    | 2     | 6     | 38    | 18    | 20    | 38    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Arsenal        | 20    | 12    | 2     | 6     | 32    | 19    | 13    | 38    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Everton        | 20    | 10    | 4     | 6     | 33    | 26    | 7     | 34    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Man Utd        | 20    | 9     | 6     | 5     | 28    | 15    | 13    | 33    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Norwich        | 20    | 10    | 2     | 8     | 24    | 27    | -3    | 32    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Leicester      | 19    | 8     | 5     | 6     | 23    | 21    | 2     | 29    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Tottenham      | 20    | 7     | 7     | 6     | 21    | 23    | -2    | 28    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Bournemouth    | 20    | 8     | 2     | 10    | 29    | 31    | -2    | 26    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Sheff Utd      | 20    | 7     | 4     | 9     | 24    | 27    | -3    | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Aston Villa    | 20    | 7     | 4     | 9     | 23    | 27    | -4    | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | Southampton    | 20    | 6     | 5     | 9     | 22    | 28    | -6    | 23    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | West Ham       | 20    | 5     | 4     | 11    | 16    | 31    | -15   | 19    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | Burnley        | 20    | 4     | 6     | 10    | 16    | 27    | -11   | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | Brighton       | 20    | 5     | 3     | 12    | 25    | 47    | -22   | 18    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | Watford        | 20    | 3     | 7     | 10    | 16    | 26    | -10   | 16    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Crystal Palace | 20    | 3     | 2     | 15    | 14    | 38    | -24   | 11    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 20    | 3     | 1     | 16    | 24    | 60    | -36   | 10    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

 

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Chelsea's final match of the calendar year saw them travel to a freezing Turf Moor to face Burnley. The Blues knew that victory would be crucial with Arsenal and Wolves breathing down their necks.

 

Burnley 

Pope 

Long Tarkowski Mee Taylor 

Gudmundsson Cork Hendrick McNeil 

Wood Barnes 

Substitutes: Hart, Gibson, Westwood, Rodriguez, Brady, Bardsley, Brownhill 

 

Chelsea 

Kepa 

James Tomori Zouma Azpilicueta

Jorginho 

Kovacic Mount 

Pulisic Giroud Hudson-Odoi 

Substitutes: Caballero, Rüdiger, Christensen, Barkley, Abraham, Willian, Emerson 

 

Referee: Stuart Atwell 

 

Things didn't start well for Burnley, as in the third minute, Ben Mee went down injured tackling Pulisic. Ben Gibson came on to replace him. 

 

In the tenth minute, a cross from Gudmundsson was caught by Kepa.

 

Reece James was the first name to go into the book, for a thirteenth-minute foul on Charlie Taylor. 

 

In the sixteenth minute, Pulisic found Kovacic, who passed back to Jorginho. Jorginho laid the ball left to Mount, who sprayed it to Azpilicueta. Azpilicueta sent a cross to Giroud, whose header was tipped over by Pope.

 

A minute later, Hudson-Odoi took the ball down the left and cut inside before sending a shot sailing over the crossbar. Hudson-Odoi had another shot two minutes later, which he sent wide.

 

In the 21st minute, Chelsea were awarded a free kick for a foul on Hudson-Odoi. James stepped up, but his shot was saved by Pope.

 

In the 25th minute, a Burnley free kick was caught by Kepa, who immediately sent a long ball upfield. Long intercepted, but Hudson-Odoi won the ball back and got into the area before having a shot blocked. Chelsea then won a corner, which Tarkowski headed clear. 

 

In the 27th minute, Chelsea were awarded a free kick. Kovacic sent the ball into the area for Giroud, whose header was saved by Pope. 

 

In the 32nd minute, Pulisic got down the right before being fouled by Gibson, who received a yellow card. From the free kick, Kovacic found Zouma, whose header went over the bar. 

 

In the 36th minute, McNeil got to the byline and sent in a cross. Zouma headed the ball clear, but only as far as Hendrick, who sent a half volley wide.

 

A minute later, Chelsea won a corner. Mason Mount's ball was headed clear, but Pulisic intercepted and passed to Zouma. Zouma exchanged passes with Tomori before passing to Azpilicueta, who played a one-two with Hudson-Odoi before sending a cross to Pulisic, which Barnes intercepted and cleared. 

 

From the throw-in, Jorginho passed left to Azpilicueta, who lost the ball to Gudmundsson. Gudmundsson played a one-two with Wood before exchanging passes with Long. He then knocked the ball down the line for Wood, but Zouma got there first and cleared behind. 

 

Chelsea then countered, and a pass from Kovacic found Giroud, whose header was intercepted by Gibson. 

 

In the 40th minute, Burnley won a corner, which was cleared by Pulisic. 

 

Three minutes later, a cross from Gudmundsson found Barnes, who headed over the bar.

 

Chelsea were then awarded a free kick, and Kovacic found Zouma, whose header was saved by Pope. 

 

In stoppage time, Burnley won a corner, which Zouma headed clear.

 

In the first minute of the second half, Hudson-Odoi looked to bend the ball towards goal from long-range, but his shot was too high.

 

Four minutes later, Pulisic took the ball down the right before putting in a cross which was deflected behind.

 

Fikayo Tomori then went into the book for a foul on Ashley Barnes, before Hendrick was booked for a foul on Pulisic. 

 

A long ball from Jorginho then found Azpilicueta, who got the ball across to Pulisic. Pulisic got his head to it, but his header was tipped over by Pope. Chelsea then replaced a disappointing Hudson-Odoi with Willian. 

 

This nearly backfired as, in the 59th minute, a corner from Mount was headed clear by Long. Burnley countered, and Willian missed an interception. Gudmundsson searched out Wood, who was denied by a fingertip save from Kepa. Wood connected with the resulting corner, but sent his header high over the bar. Ashley Westwood then came on, replacing Jeff Hendrick.

 

In the 65th minute, Azpilicueta fed the ball down the line for Giroud, who passed to Willian. Willian passed to Azpilicueta, who passed to Kovacic. Kovacic looked for Willian in the area, and Willian took a shot which was saved by Pope. Chelsea then took Giroud off, replacing him with Abraham, before Rodriguez replaced McNeil.

 

In the 70th minute, Jack Cork was booked for pulling Kovacic's shirt. From the free kick, Kovacic sent a high ball towards the far side of the area. Abraham saw his header saved by Pope, but the rebound deflected to Pulisic, who scrambled it over the line to give Chelsea the lead.

 

Two minutes later, a pass from Mount found Azpilicueta, who won a corner. Mount's corner was only cleared as far as Tomori, whose shot was saved by Pope.

 

In the 79th minute, Burnley were awarded a free kick. Westwood's ball found Wood, who headed over the bar. A minute later, a Burnley counter-attack saw Kepa tip a Wood shot behind. 

 

In the 83rd minute, Taylor was booked for a foul on Abraham. 

 

In the 86th minute, an aerial pass from Gudmundsson was intercepted by James and headed to Barkley. Barkley hit a 35 yard ball ahead of Abraham, who got in behind Taylor and got into the area before seeing his shot tipped behind by Pope when he should have scored.

 

With two minutes left, Pulisic got into the area before being tackled. The loose ball fell to Abraham, whose shot was tipped wide by Pope.

 

Burnley were unable to muster up any attack in stoppage time, and Chelsea hung on for a somewhat fortuitous win.

 

Tuesday 31 December 2019, 19:45: Barclays Premier League - at Turf Moor, Burnley 

Burnley 0-1 Chelsea (Pulisic 71)

Attendance: 21,401 (2,140 away)

Man of the Match: Mateo Kovacic 

 

Other results:

Wednesday 

Arsenal 3-1 Watford (Pépé pen 20, 33, Lacazette 87; Sarr 3)

Brighton 1-0 Wolves (Dunk 47)

Everton 2-1 Man City (Calvert-Lewin 15, 81; Agüero 19)

Man Utd 2-0 Tottenham (Rashford 4, Mata 73)

Newcastle 1-1 Aston Villa (Joelinton 19, Rose s/o 31; Samatta 66)

Southampton 1-1 West Ham (Redmond 22; Yarmolenko 26)

Bournemouth 2-0 Crystal Palace (Ibe 7, King 72)

Liverpool 3-1 Leicester (Wijnaldum 12, Alexander-Arnold 55, Gomez 65; Maddison 4)

 

League Table:

| Pos  | Inf   | Team           | Pld   | Won   | Drn   | Lst   | For   | Ag    | GD    | Pts   |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 1st  |       | Man City       | 21    | 17    | 2     | 2     | 48    | 13    | 35    | 53    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 2nd  |       | Liverpool      | 20    | 14    | 3     | 3     | 48    | 17    | 31    | 45    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 3rd  |       | Chelsea        | 21    | 13    | 5     | 3     | 33    | 14    | 19    | 44    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 4th  |       | Arsenal        | 21    | 13    | 2     | 6     | 35    | 20    | 15    | 41    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 5th  |       | Wolves         | 21    | 12    | 2     | 7     | 38    | 19    | 19    | 38    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 6th  |       | Everton        | 21    | 11    | 4     | 6     | 35    | 27    | 8     | 37    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 7th  |       | Man Utd        | 21    | 10    | 6     | 5     | 30    | 15    | 15    | 36    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 8th  |       | Norwich        | 20    | 10    | 2     | 8     | 24    | 27    | -3    | 32    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 9th  |       | Bournemouth    | 21    | 9     | 2     | 10    | 31    | 31    | 0     | 29    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 10th |       | Leicester      | 20    | 8     | 5     | 7     | 24    | 24    | 0     | 29    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 11th |       | Tottenham      | 21    | 7     | 7     | 7     | 21    | 25    | -4    | 28    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 12th |       | Aston Villa    | 21    | 7     | 5     | 9     | 24    | 28    | -4    | 26    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 13th |       | Sheff Utd      | 20    | 7     | 4     | 9     | 24    | 27    | -3    | 25    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 14th |       | Southampton    | 21    | 6     | 6     | 9     | 23    | 29    | -6    | 24    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 15th |       | Brighton       | 21    | 6     | 3     | 12    | 26    | 47    | -21   | 21    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 16th |       | West Ham       | 21    | 5     | 5     | 11    | 17    | 32    | -15   | 20    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 17th |       | Burnley        | 21    | 4     | 6     | 11    | 16    | 28    | -12   | 18    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 18th |       | Watford        | 21    | 3     | 7     | 11    | 17    | 29    | -12   | 16    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 19th |       | Crystal Palace | 21    | 3     | 2     | 16    | 14    | 40    | -26   | 11    |
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 
| 20th |       | Newcastle      | 21    | 3     | 2     | 16    | 25    | 61    | -36   | 11    | 
| ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------| 

 

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