Chelsea defeated West Ham United 2-0 in the London derby, while Tottenham lost 1-0 at home to Fulham which means Chelsea are back to 3rd place (1 point above Spurs, 5 above Arsenal). Jaaskelainen kept the scoreline low, which doesn’t tell the full story. Chelsea dominated West Ham for most of the match, but West Ham would feel harshly done by a 1st half decision that ruled out Andy Carroll’s goal. Nonetheless, we’re back to 3rd place and that’s most important.
What We Learned :
1. Hazard-Mata combination the making of something great
2. Eden Hazard is in terrific form
3. Another wasteful performance
4. Frank Lampard trying to prove that he deserves an extension
1. Hazard-Mata combination the making of something great :
Juan Mata was at the heart of everything Chelsea created in the final third but wasn’t quite at his flawless best having misplaced a couple of passes in the final third. His improved after the break and could have had a couple of goals had it not been for the impressive display of Jaaskelainen. Hazard was brilliant on the ball as he set up Lampard will a super chip and scored a great solo goal after linking up with Mata. These two have a lot of years left in the them and if they stay at Chelsea for a majority of that time, we will be a powerhouse. Hazard and Mata have really figured each other out and began to play together. Also, the pass combination of Mata to Hazard happened 31 times, the highest passing combination in the game – 2nd highest was Hazard to Mata (27 times).
2. Eden Hazard is in terrific form :
Hazard took 5 shots, 4 on target, 1 goal. He created 4 goal scoring chances, 1 resulted in a goal. He also made the most dribbles and passes. Hazard saw plenty of the ball in the first half and his pace caused West Ham all sorts of problems down either flank. Did well to pick out Lampard with a cute chip for Chelsea’s opener and continued to cause havoc in the visitors’ defence throughout. Cut in from the right flank with devastating effect to double Chelsea’s lead early in the second. Hazard was deservingly, Man of the Match.
3. Another wasteful performance :
We’ve had 24 attempts on goal and only scored 2. That statistic should speak for itself. We could of easily won 6-0, if not for poor finishing and some great goalkeeping from Jaaskelainen. Demba Ba should have given Chelsea an early lead but wasted a gilt-edged one-on-one chance with a poor finish and later failed to beat Jaaskelainen with two more golden chances just before the break. Had a couple more opportunities in the second half which he couldn’t convert either. Poor day from the Senegal international. Lampard fluffed a few chances as well, Mata could of finished 1 or 2 and Victor Moses could of scored as well, but Dema Ba was the most shocking.
4. Frank Lampard trying to prove that he deserves an extension :
Lampard found Demba Ba with a killer through pass early on which the Senegalese wasted but gave Chelsea the leader 15 minutes later with his 200th goal for the club. A clever forward run was followed by a well-placed header close range. Desperately pushed for another goal, but ended up missing a sitter in the final 5 minutes. Nonetheless, it was a good performance from Frank Lampard. His passing was sublime and so was his link up play. Frank Lampard handled business well in the double pivot alongside Ramires as West Ham’s midfield couldn’t do much as they were too busy helping the defense with the threat of Mata/Hazard.
Other Points :
1. Top 4 finish is ours to lose
2. Torres should have started