Here are four talking points following our wasteful display against Atletico in the Champions League.
Chelsea’s return to Europe’s foremost club competition has been decorated with progression into the knockout stages of the Champions League, albeit in unfavourable circumstances.
Due to the head-to-head rule instituted in European competitions, the Blues finished 2nd in the group level on points with Roma – goal difference is discarded in favour of the head-to-head rule.
Much to our annoyance, this means a conceivably tougher challenge in the last 16 stage of the most prized tournament in world football. The likelihood is that we will face Barcelona, Besiktas or PSG in the next phase of the competition.
Despite dominating the majority of the game, we were unable to capitalise on a whole host of purposeful goal-scoring opportunities to seize the all-important three points.
- Eden Hazard is on another level this season.
The Belgian has been in magnificent form since returning from injury; it’s arguably the best period that he’s enjoyed throughout the entirety of his Chelsea career. His ability to dictate our attacking play and exert his creative influence is unparalleled in the Premier League. He indeed is displaying the full extent of his qualities on a weekly basis, and the Blues are seemingly reliant on his industry and creativity.
- We were made to rue our wasteful
We managed to amass a staggering total of 17 shots against Atletico Madrid – a team regarded for their defensive guile – and for the second successive game against our Spanish opponents, we dominated the game. However, unlike the away fixture in Spain, the Blues failed to find the vital second goal despite creating numerous opportunities to extend our advantage.
- Tiemoue Bakayoko is struggling for consistency.
The majority of the Frenchman’s performances in a Chelsea shirt have been affected by the knee injury that the 23-year-old endured at Monaco last season. His career in the iconic royal blue shirt was rushed somewhat due to lack of midfield options, and even though he’s produced brilliant displays such as his performance against Manchester United and Atletico (away fixture), he’s also illustrated his capacity to deliver abject performances. As was witnessed last night.
- We must be prepared to beat the best.
It is of vital significance that we show greater consistency in the latter stages of the Champions League, as we only managed to record three victories in six games in the group stages of the Champions League. Despite two terrific attacking displays against Qarabag, and two dominant performances against Atleti, we were ruthlessly exposed against Roma in both of the fixtures. We cannot let the same defensive ill-discipline characterise our performances in the knockout stages.
What are your thoughts? Let us know!