Chelsea and Maurizio Sarri’s perfect start to the Premier League Season has come to an end Courtesy a Goalless draw away to West Ham. Chelsea fans can probably associate this slip up to the fact that the Europa League has now kicked-off and the players aren’t accustomed to mid-week fixtures yet. Not to take any credit away from West Ham, Manuel Pellegrini’s side were Hardworking, organized in defence and broke very well on the counter giving Chelsea’s defence and Goalkeeper Kepa Arizzabalaga a few problems. Sarri’s men had a few chances too, but in the end, a game that could have gone either way went neither way.
— Premier League (@premierleague) September 23, 2018
Chelsea, as usual, kicked off the proceedings with a bulk of the possession and looked very threatening in the final third. But at home, West Ham looked solid in defence and denied any opportunity in the penalty box that presented itself for Chelsea. In the 31st Minute, West Ham’s Michail Antonio struck from four yards out but was brilliantly denied by Kepa Arizzabalaga to ensure that the game remains Goalless going into Half-time.
Alvaro Morata replaced Olivier Giroud in the 65th Minute that led to some eventful moments in this frustrating London Derby. Morata had an opportunity to score with his first and second touch of the game, first a backheel from Hazard to the Spaniard that resulted in a corner. The Second opportunity came with the resulting corner when the ball fell perfectly for Morata who poked it in from close range to, unfortunately, find Lukasz Fabianski’s face. The best chance of the game came when Andriy Yarmalenko Headed wide from six yards in what seemed to be a perfect opportunity to break the deadlock with 13 minutes left.
Injuries create setbacks
Chelsea and West Ham both had injury problems that seemed to bite them in the back. The Blues were missing Pedro (Shoulder Injury suffered against PAOK) and his ability to score and create goals from tight situations, while West Ham’s main man, Marko Arnautovic was out with a knee injury. Both players would have and could have had a major Impact on this game. Furthermore, for Chelsea, the setbacks didn’t end with Pedro’s injury with Centre-Back Antonio Rudiger out for 2-3 days as well.