Sunday, November 19, 2017

Tottenham 1-2 Chelsea: Alonso double continues Wembley woes for Spurs

Ashley Randall in Editorial, English Premier League 20 Aug 2017

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Two goals from Marcos Alonso earned Chelsea their first Premier League points of the season as they beat rivals Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 this afternoon.

Spurs thought they had stolen a point when a late Michy Batshuayi own goal had cancelled out Alonso’s sublime first-half free kick.

However, the Spaniard ensured Chelsea secured the bragging rights when he popped up with a dramatic last-minute winner.

It meant Spurs continued their dreaded record at Wembley after winning only once in their last 10 competitive matches at their temporary home.

First Half

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte sprung somewhat of a surprise when he started David Luiz in a midfield role designed to nullify Tottenham’s strength in the middle of the park.

It was the Blues who started more confidently and they should have been ahead inside five minutes when Alvaro Morata somehow diverted a free header wide of the goal from only five yards out.

The West London team was looking comfortable and composed on the ball, and were operating with mostly five at the back early on in order to frustrate their opposition.

Chelsea then deservedly went ahead in the 24th minute when Alonso expertly caressed a free kick from 25 yards into Hugo Lloris’ top left-hand corner.

That seemed to have brought Spurs to life and they suddenly looked a different team for the rest of the first-half, with forward Harry Kane missing a hatful of decent chances.

It didn’t look like it was going to be the England striker’s day and this was further confirmed when he made his way into the penalty area and confidently curled the ball round Lloris, only to see the ball hit the foot of the post.

Just before half-time it was Ben Davies’ chance to go close as he struck a deflected ball from just outside the box which saw Lloris parry the ball to safety.

Second Half

Tottenham didn’t want the break to come, and they started the second-half with more of the same pressure, but with less opportunities than they created in the first period.

Jan Vertonghen could have easily seen red in the 50th minute when a late tackle on Victor Moses was high and rash, only for referee Anthony Taylor to produce the yellow card.

Chelsea had their backs to the wall but Spurs weren’t showing enough creativity in the final third to make all their possession count.

However, a clumsy challenge from Tiemoue Bakayoko in a dangerous position was enough invitation for Christian Eriksen to play a wonderful ball into the box, only to see substitute Batshuayi divert it past his own goalkeeper to make it 1-1.

The Tottenham fans were in jubilant mood and were optimistic to push on for a late winner, but Chelsea had other plans.

Fantastic work from Luiz allowed him to intercept a dangerous looking break for Spurs in the middle of the park, and neat play between Pedro and Alonso allowed the left-winger to rifle a shot underneath Lloris at his near post to win the game for the Blues.

It was an important victory for Chelsea and will have answered some of the critic’s questions towards Conte regarding the manager’s future at the club.

Tottenham: Lloris (5), Trippier (6) (Janssen 4), Alderweireld (7), Vertonghen (6), Davies (6) (Sissoko 4), Wanyama (6), Dembele (6), Dier (6) (Son 5), Eriksen (6), Alli (6), Kane (6).

Subs not used: Vorm, Wimmer, Winks, Walker-Peters.

Chelsea: Courtois (7), Christensen (7), Rudiger (7), Luiz (8), Azpilicueta (7), Alonso (8), Moses (7), Kante (7), Bakayoko (6), Willian (7) (Pedro 6), Morata (6) (Batshuayi 4)

Subs not used: Caballero, Kenedy, Musonda, Tomori, Scott

Referee: Anthony Taylor

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ashley Randall


Ash is a freelance football writer who lives, breathes and dreams the beautiful game. A lifelong Wolverhampton Wanderers season ticket holder, if he isn't at Molineux then he will be watching any game on television that he can set his eyes on. Producing work for various football websites and publications, Ash has also written for regional newspapers and global magazines.

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