Chelsea went head to head with PAOK Salonika at Stamford Bridge earlier tonight looking to bounce back from their 3-1 defeat at the hands of Tottenham Hotspur last weekend. The Pensioners started the game on the front foot and created a great early chance when Olivier Giroud was through on goal. However, the Frenchman was brought down by Yevhen Khacheridi who received a red card for his troubles.
It took the home side just 27 minutes to score the opening goal of the contest when Giroud curled in a fantastic shot from 15 yards. The French forward doubled his team’s lead in the 37th minute which put Chelsea in an excellent position going into half-time.
The West London outfit kept the pressure on in the second half and scored their third goal of the night courtesy of Callum Hudson-Odoi’s superb strike in the 59th minute. Alvaro Morata came off the bench to put the icing on the cake when he scored in the 78th minute to hand the Pensioners a deserved 4-0 win on the night.
Let’s take a look at how each Chelsea player performed during the match against PAOK Salonika.
GK: Kepa Arrizabalaga – 6/10
The Spanish keeper was not tested at all in goal for Chelsea and had one of the most comfortable matches of his career.
RB: Davide Zappacosta – 5.5/10
He got a lot of joy running down the right flank but failed to deliver the telling ball in the final third.
CB: Gary Cahill – 6.5/10
The English centre-back had a relatively easy game while defending his own box. He neutralised the threat of Aleksandr Prijovic in the first half but was largely untroubled in the second.
CB: Andreas Christensen – 6.5/10
Much like his centre-back partner, Christensen did his job well to earn one of the most comfortable clean sheets of his life.
LB: Emerson Palmieri dos Santos – 7/10
The Chelsea full-back was a wonderful outlet down the left flank and was always looking to deliver some dangerous balls from the wide areas.
CM: Ross Barkley – 7/10
The English prospect kept things tidy in midfield and distributed the ball well to retain possession for Chelsea.
CM: Cesc Fàbregas – 9/10
The Spaniard was brilliant on the night and managed to completely exploit the 10-men of PAOK with his accurate through balls from midfield.
CM: Ruben Loftus-Cheek – 8.5/10
He put in an outstanding shift for the Pensioners and completed a number of dangerous dribbles in the opposition half. The English youngster used his strength and power to perfection as he caused a lot of problems for the PAOK defence.
RM: Pedro – 7/10
The Spanish sensation made some excellent runs behind the PAOK backline as Fabregas picked him out on more than one occasion. However, his impact faded in the second half which is why Maurizio Sarri decided to sub him out.
ST: Olivier Giroud – 8/10
The Frenchman scored a brace on the night which ultimately made the difference for the home team. Giroud looked like a striker in form and his performance tonight would definitely help his chances of getting a spot in Sarri’s first-team in the coming weeks.
LM: Callum Hudson-Odoi – 9/10
The Chelsea youngster was not afraid to take on the PAOK defenders and was pretty direct when dribbling with the ball. He scored his first senior goal for Chelsea to cap off an excellent display at Stamford Bridge.
RB: Ethan Ampadu – 6.5/10
He came off the bench to feature as a makeshift right-back. Ampadu did his job quite well to see out the clean sheet.
RM: Willian – 5/10
The Brazilian brought some energy to the Pensioners midfield but couldn’t do much to affect the game.
ST: Alvaro Morata – 7/10
The Spaniard came on to score with his head which will give him some confidence going into this weekend’s league clash versus Fulham.