Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Chelsea 0-1 Manchester City: Major Talking Points As Pep Guardiola’s Side Lay Down Their Marker

Tom Dunstan in Editorial, English Premier League 25 Sep 2021

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In what was a real heavyweight showdown on Saturday lunchtime, Manchester City managed to lay down a title marker as the defending champions picked up a 1-0 win in west London.

With many feeling that the weekend’s showdown was a battle between the two leading contenders, Pep Guardiola’s side put in a dominant display at Stamford Bridge and were a more than worthy winner.

Watching Gabriel Jesus eventually grab the winner early in the second-half, we have taken a look at all the major talking points as Manchester City managed to right their Champions League wrong.

A season-best display from City

Left hugely disappointed to have had to settle for a toothless 0-0 stalemate at home against Southampton last weekend, Manchester City showed no signs of a hangover on Saturday lunchtime.

With Kevin De Bruyne making his return alongside Phil Foden who was making his first Premier League appearance of the season, the defending English champions pressed Chelsea from the opening whistle.

Knowing that they had a real chance to lay down a marker, the Sky Blues would have left Stamford Bridge knowing that they could have easily left with more goals to show for their efforts.

With Jack Grealish forcing Edouard Mendy into a pair of stunning second-half saves, Gabriel Jesus found himself in the right place at the right time as he opened the scoring eight minutes after the break.

Watching Joao Cancelo’s miss-hit effort fall into his patch, the Brazilian striker swiveled well as he saw his deflected shot bounce off Jorginho and go past an on-looking Mendy.

Still conceding just a single domestic goal since opening the 2021/22 campaign, Pep Guardiola was right to praise his side’s stellar display in the capital.

A bad day at the office for Chelsea

Putting on a rampant second-half display away at Tottenham last weekend as they stormed their way to a thumping 3-0 win, many from across the Premier League expected Chelsea to lay down their own marker at Stamford Bridge.

Lifting their second Champions League title thanks to that famous 1-0 win against Manchester City back in May, Thomas Tuchel had in fact won all three of his meetings against Guardiola since arriving in England earlier in the year.

However, while the former PSG boss might have made the decision to partner Timo Werner with Romelu Lukaku on Saturday lunchtime, it was a plan that really didn’t pay off for the title hopefuls.

While their returning Belgian superstar might have enjoyed a free-scoring start to life back at Chelsea, Lukaku failed to lay a glove on City’s defensive partnership of Ruben Dias and Aymeric Laporte.

Cutting a frustrated figure and with him and Werner having the fewest touches of any players at Stamford Bridge, Tuchel was left far from pleased by his side’s sluggish display on home soil.

Failing to record a single shot on target, Tuchel and Chelsea will know that they missed a real chance in west London.

What’s next for both?

Managing to shock some around the Premier League as they landed what could turn out to be a crucial 1-0 win on the road, there is no doubt that Manchester City will be desperate to keep up that momentum.

Bouncing back after opening the 2021/22 campaign with a 1-0 loss away at Spurs, Guardiola’s side will be next seen in midweek when they turn their attention back to European duties.

In what could be a mouth-watering affair in Paris, the Sky Blues will face off against a stacked PSG squad on Tuesday night.

As for Chelsea, after suffering their first defeat of the season at Stamford Bridge, the title challengers will know that they have no time to feel sorry for themselves.

Facing their own Champions League heavyweight showdown as they travel to Juventus in midweek, the west London outfit will be next seen on domestic duties when they host Southampton next weekend.

Match Report:

Chelsea: Mendy (7.5), James (5.5), Azpilicueta (6.5), Christensen (6), Rüdiger (6), Alonso (5.5), Kante (6), Kovacic (5.5), Jorginho (6), Lukaku (3), Werner (3.5)

Subs: Thiago (7), Havertz (5), Loftus-Cheek (5.5)

Manchester City: Ederson (7), Walker (7), Dias (8.5), Laporte (7.5), Cancelo (9), Rodri (7), B. Silva (8), De Bruyne (6.5), Grealish (7), Jesus (9), Foden (7)

Subs: Sterling (6), Mahrez (7), Fernandinho (6)

Goals: Jesus 53′

Yellow Cards: Chelsea: Christensen, Rüdiger, Alonso – Manchester City: Dias, Laporte

Referee: Michael Oliver

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Dunstan


Formerly of The Independent, Tom is a freelance football and boxing journalist from Essex, England. Currently working for three online publications, Tom is a graduate of the University of Falmouth and has spent the last two years writing across Australia, New Zealand and Asia. He can be followed at @IamTomDunstan

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