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Saturday, April 20, 2024

Chelsea, Felix annoyed by Liverpool as each groups’ prime 4 hopes decline

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LONDON — Chelsea and Liverpool prolonged their depressing Premier League seasons by taking part in out a dismal goalless draw at Stamford Bridge within the residence crew’s first sport for the reason that sacking of supervisor Graham Potter.

Reece James and Kai Havertz noticed objectives dominated out by VAR for Chelsea and Mateo Kovacic missed a simple probability to attain within the second-half.

Report: Chelsea and Liverpool draw | Premier League desk

However in a marketing campaign that has seen extra downs than ups for either side, this was one other low second for Chelsea and Liverpool.

Speedy response

1. Champions League heavyweights now going through scrap for minor locations

Chelsea vs. Liverpool fixtures are normally explosive, high-stakes clashes with titles or cups on the road, particularly presently of yr.

However after these two Premier League giants and Champions League heavyweights — the final two English golf equipment to carry the European Cup — performed out a 0-0 draw at Stamford Bridge, it meant that they’re now taking part in for the doubtful honour of locations within the Europa League and Convention League.

Stream on ESPN+: LaLiga, Bundesliga, extra (U.S.)

Chelsea, and not using a supervisor since Sunday’s sacking of Graham Potter, are in all probability now out of the operating for a Europa League spot having fallen seven factors behind sixth-place Brighton after this outcome, however they may nonetheless sneak into the Convention League with seventh-place Liverpool simply 4 factors forward.

However for 2 golf equipment with eight Champions League titles between them, the prospect of taking part in out the season for the prize of a spot amongst European soccer’s minnows subsequent season will likely be a galling one.

Liverpool at the moment are seven factors adrift of the highest 4 and fading quick after scoring one in three league video games since beating Manchester United 7-0 final month. The chase for the ultimate European spots sums up the place these two golf equipment are, nonetheless, following a dismal season for each.

On this sport, Chelsea had the higher probabilities and noticed two objectives dominated out — one for offside and the opposite for handball — however they confirmed little signal of a optimistic bounce below interim supervisor Bruno Saltor. And Liverpool had been flat and bereft of vitality and concepts following their heavy defeat on the Etihad.

On the proof of this sport, neither membership might be sure of qualifying for Europe, so the summer season’s rebuilding plans might be even tougher to attain.

2. Jurgen Klopp’s adjustments made little sense in Liverpool’s push for prime 4

Klopp made six adjustments to his crew following Liverpool’s 4-1 defeat at Manchester Metropolis on Saturday and just one — the sick Virgil van Dijk — was enforced on the Reds’ supervisor.

Contemplating the way of their defeat on the Etihad, Klopp might argue that none of his gamers deserved to start out at Stamford Bridge, however his choice didn’t look like a ruthless show of a supervisor dropping his under-performing stars.

Mohamed Salah was rested relatively than dropped, as was Andy Robertson. Each got here off the substitutes’ bench within the second-half. Trent Alexander-Arnold was poor on the Etihad, however Cody Gakpo was a uncommon shining mild in defeat, but he was on the bench too. Harvey Elliott in the meantime did not even make the bench.

Klopp would possibly merely have determined that, with this sport sandwiched between the Metropolis fixture and a conflict with Arsenal at Anfield on Sunday, he needed to inject some freshness into his crew.

However with no cup or European commitments between now and the tip of the season, Liverpool now have simply 10 Premier League video games to play over two months, so did the likes of Salah, Robertson and Gakpo actually have to be rested 5 days earlier than going through the Gunners?

Klopp is aware of his gamers higher than anybody, however by making so many adjustments, it gave the message that Liverpool have given up hope of climbing into the highest 4 this season. And with 10 video games to go, that is not a superb place for Liverpool to be.

3. Joao Felix a uncommon Chelsea spotlight, however will he keep?

With simply two objectives in 12 video games for Chelsea since arriving on mortgage from Atletico Madrid in January, it might be a stretch to recommend that the Portugal worldwide has been successful at Stamford Bridge.

However the 23-year-old confirmed towards Liverpool that he’s a expertise who might develop into a 15-goal a season participant below the correct coach or supervisor. With a reported buy-out payment of £70 million on the finish of his mortgage, nonetheless, he might want to do way more to earn a everlasting transfer.

Felix nearly scored an excellent purpose inside three minutes when he raced half the size of the pitch solely to have his shot blocked within the closing motion. It summed up the risk he posed along with his direct operating and willingness to take the ball.

Whereas a few of his teammates is likely to be missing in confidence following the run of poor outcomes that led to the dismissal of Potter on Sunday, Felix didn’t show the consequences of an absence of morale. However though he carried out like a participant able to take off, Felix summed up Chelsea in some ways — full of life, however erratic and with no actual final touch.

Chelsea went into this sport with their lowest-ever Premier League objectives whole after scoring simply 29 objectives in 28 video games, however they’ve an excessive amount of high quality to play with a blunt edge.

Greatest and worst performers


Joao Felix, Chelsea: A relentless ball of vitality and unfortunate to not rating a shocking solo purpose within the first-half. Chelsea’s greatest participant.

Jordan Henderson, Liverpool: After the 4-1 humiliation at Manchester Metropolis, Henderson steadied the ship with a captain’s efficiency in midfield for Liverpool.


Alisson Becker, Liverpool: The Liverpool goalkeeper has had some wobbles not too long ago and he was unconvincing once more at Stamford Bridge, particularly with the ball at his toes.

Mateo Kovacic, Chelsea: Missed a transparent probability to place Chelsea forward early within the second-half, however blazed his shot excessive over the crossbar from ten yards.

Darwin Nunez, Liverpool: One other high-energy, big-effort efficiency from the Liverpool ahead, however as soon as once more, there was no finish product.

Highlights and notable moments

Havertz thought he had damaged the impasse earlier than VAR disallowed his purpose for a handball.

After the match: What the gamers/managers stated

Kai Havertz on the sacking of Graham Potter: “We have now to take accountability what is going on on. We’re the faces on the market. We’re all very annoyed to see Graham [Potter] go, however now we have to simply accept the state of affairs.”

Key stats

James Milner made his 610th Premier League look and is now third in all-time appearances within the English prime flight.

Chelsea have failed to attain within the first half of every of their final eight Premier League video games at Stamford Bridge, their joint-longest such run within the competitors.

Up subsequent

Chelsea: The Blues go to Wolves on April 8 within the Premier League earlier than going through Actual Madrid within the Champions League quarterfinals on April 12.

Liverpool: With solely Premier League video games left to play this season, the Reds host league leaders Arsenal subsequent on April 9 adopted by a go to to Leeds United on April 17.

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