Chelsea lost 4-1 to Manchester United in yet another miserable Premier League outing for the Blues at Old Trafford on Thursday evening.
The writing was on the wall from the minute Casemiro was left unmarked to head home after all of six minutes, as Frank Lampard and his band of misfiring misfits slumped to another pitiful defeat.
What followed was the story of the season – big chances going to waste before being punished by way of an Anthony Martial back-post tap-in just before the interval. Bruno Fernandes would then score from the spot in the 73rd minute after clumsy defending from Wesley Fofana, who would go on to make another calamitous error for Marcus Rashford to make it four just five minutes later.
Joao Felix got the consolation but Blues fans will be counting down the minutes until their worst season this century is over, and the good news is that it all mercifully comes to an end when they host Newcastle United on Sunday. Until then, here is how Absolute Chelsea rated the players’ painful performance in Manchester.
Kepa Arrizabalaga – 6/10
The first two shots on target were two goals. Not really his fault for either. Good save to deny Eriksen thereafter and in reality kept the scoreline respectable.
Cesar Azpilicueta – 6/10
Whether his time is drawing near or not, he showed more commitment and passion than the rest combined in a superb bit of defending midway through the first period, hurting himself in the process. Leaves it all on the line even if there isn’t much left in the tank to draw upon. Completely smothered young rising star Marcus Rashford out of the game too. Some of his colleagues should take note.
Wesley Fofana – 2/10
Bullied for the opener, being blocked off by Victor Lindelof of all people and failing to recover in time, thereby giving Casemiro the freedom of Old Trafford to nod one past Kepa. Never really recovered from there. Shocking defending to give away a penalty for the third and abysmal for the fourth. One of the all-time worst performances from a Chelsea player.
Trevoh Chalobah – 5/10
An excellent old-fashioned challenge lamentably left winger Antony unable to continue, but that should be no stain on the young Sierra Leonean’s efforts. A little static in defence otherwise and lacking awareness.
Lewis Hall – 8/10
Set up a multitude of gilt-edged chances only for his peers further forward to spurn them like it was going out of fashion. The youngster has acquitted himself so admirably in tough fixtures. Defensively astute too. A talent who can hold his head high.
Enzo Fernandez – 7/10
Penny for his thoughts? Yet again oozed class in his intricate movements and laser-guided passing, even managing to slip a perfect through ball to Conor Gallagher on the cusp of half-time that has rarely been sighted in this Chelsea outfit for a good seven or eight years. For the second game in a row you could see his frustrations bubbling over and you do genuinely have to wonder what he feels about his mid-season move. His current situation feels like a crime to football and the powers that be at Chelsea have to put it right this summer.
Conor Gallagher – 5/10 (80)
A good run out for Chelsea’s faithful companion. Plenty of intent but execution, be it passing or otherwise, was pretty limp.
Carney Chukwuemeka – 7/10 (80)
The lesser spotted Carney Chukwuemeka finally got some minutes after months and months of online fans pleading for Frank Lampard to give it a go. Were those calls justified? On balance, it would appear so. Very neat and tidy, looking to link-up play, keep it simple and progress the ball forward. Refreshing after some of the stinkers that have been on display in the engine room this season.
Noni Madueke – 5/10 (80)
Pretty quiet all told, with much of proceedings taking place on the opposite flank. Some nice direct running when it did come his way, but lacking a bit of the explosiveness or impetus of some recent appearances. Roughed up and persistently fouled.
Mykhailo Mudryk – 4/10 (64)
That debut cameo against Liverpool, so full of promise, seems so far away now. A genuinely puzzling inability to control a ball and a penchant for choking in front of goal makes it hard to defend the Ukrainian on the early evidence of his Blues career. Confidence is shot to bits but needs to get his head down, work hard and keep the social media drama to a minimum if he wants to crack on.
Kai Havertz – 3/10 (64)
This writer had to rub his eyes when the German inexplicably headed off target late in the first half. A horrible miss that encapsulated a horrible performance from a player who has been a horrible experiment cosplaying as a striker for Chelsea in lieu of any other trusted options. Can only assume his angry reaction when substituted was aimed at himself – he has zero grounds to be annoyed at anyone else.
Christian Pulisic – 5/10 (64)
Surprised all by reminding those in attendance of his employment. No real impact of note. Not so much sprinting towards a Stamford Bridge exit than jogging.
Joao Felix – 7/10 (64)
Excellent goal from a player who looked an echelon of quality above the rest upon his introduction. Seems to get the club even more so than some of those who have been around it for years, and has talisman potential if Chelsea look to bring him back in for next season.
David Datro Fofana – N/A (80)
Hakim Ziyech – N/A (80)
Ruben Loftus-Cheek – N/A (80)
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