Tuesday , June 28 2022

The first loss of the season exposes Chelsea's weaknesses to Sarri


It took a terrible 90-minute performance to expose the growing list of Chelsea team shortcomings that the coach warned for much of the season.

Chelsea was lucky to come from the Wembley stadium, with a 3-1 loss to Tottenham on Saturday. So powerful and dominating were Tottenham's players, so the victory margin could easily have been five or six goals.

Some will try to put this result in perspective, arguing that it was Chelsea's first loss in 19 matches this season and that the match with Tottenham – a team that made the best start to a Premier League campaign – will be among the most difficult season.

Look deeper, though, and there are a number of issues that concern Chelsea coach, Maurizio Sarri, who admitted that a "problem is obvious."

The biggest might be that the opponents seem to have realized that midfielder Jorginho, who squeezes his mind, goes a long way toward chasing Chelsea. An off-season arrival in Naples, Jorginho dictates how the team plays with its relentless distribution and is Sarri's brain on the field.

Dele Alli cursed all Jorginho on Saturday, forcing the mistakes of international Italy and leading him to hit Alli just before the break. Everton did the same in a 0-0 draw at Chelsea in the last round of games before the international break, and Richarlison crashed back to suppress Jorginho, who was booked for a hard scissors by Gylfi Sigurdsson.

The fact that Jorginho's cancellation is so effective naturally shifts his attention to Nicolas Golo Kante, a player considered the world's best midfielder, but who is no longer playing Chelsea in this position.

Now, he plays a more prominent role in front of Jorginho, who hardly gets the best of international France. He was anonymous against Tottenham, who did not offer any striking threat as the game passed largely. It seems that Kante's skills are scattered by Sarri.

Meanwhile, taking Jorginho out of the game means Chelsea's protection is lower. David Luiz, a back center in the center, was mostly on a light walk this season, with Jorginho standing in front of him, but he and defender Antonio Rudiger's teammate were badly exposed against Tottenham.

Luiz can sometimes defend and the way he turned his back on Harry Kane when the striker shot in a long shot for Tottenham's second goal would be disgusting Chelsea fans who have seen the retired recently, John Terry, has often put his body on the line for the cause of the team.

With his left back, Marcos Alonso remains very attacked on his wing, there is a danger that Chelsea's defense will be overtaken.

In the front, Sarri continues to move from Olivier Giroud and Alvaro Morata as the only striker of the team, but no player has looked convincingly. Giroud seems to get the best out of Hazard, but he fails to score enough, with a late consolation at Wembley, his first Premier League goal of the season.

The morgue offers more threats to the goal but is inconsistent, and Sarri recently says the striker of Spain is "mentally fragile".

That means relying on the danger of clicking the Chelsea attack. Although he started the season with 10 goals in the first 12 matches for the club and the country, he did not score on October 7 and the task of leading the team could start to weigh him.

Chelsea was defeated by Tottenham in the standings and now is just one point over Arsenal's fifth place, Manchester City visiting Stamford Bridge earlier this month.

The Sarri honeymoon period lasted three months. Now he is facing his first real test as coach Chelsea.

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