The humiliation against Manchester United followed by a home draw against Leicester City piled the pressure on Chelsea ahead of their trip to Carrow Road this afternoon in the hunt for their first win of the season against Norwich City. But it was not at all a stroll in the park for them as the new boys gave the Blues a real run for their money.
However, Frank Lampard’s trust on the academy graduates paid off as his side clinched a narrow 3-2 win in a five-goal thriller and grabbed three massive points in their battle to fight for the silverware going forward.
Below are the Chelsea players rated in their win against Norwich City.
Kepa Arrizabalaga: 6
The Spaniard conceded twice early on but was solid ever since. He managed to pull off a few routine stops to deny the Canaries. Kepa’s distribution out from the back could have been better though, and he was lucky not to concede for the third time as Ben Godfrey’s header came off the woodwork minutes after Tammy Abraham’s decisive strike.
Cesar Azpilicueta: 7.5
Made timely overlapping runs using the right-hand flank and his cross from the wide was slotted home calmly by Abraham within three minutes into the game. The skipper, however, had a few nervy occasions defensively against the pace and trickery of Emiliano Buendia mostly during the first half of the tie.
Andreas Christensen: 6.5
Mistimed a few tackles and struggled to contain Teemu Pukki who scored and assisted one in the early minutes to level the scoreline. Had one big opportunity to find the net and threatened from the indirect set-pieces.
Kurt Zouma: 7
Made eight recoveries and exhibited great physical as well as aerial dominance against a sharp Norwich attacking third. His passing could have been better, but the Frenchman did not take too many risks and opted for no-nonsense clearances under pressure.
Had an impressive outing down the left-hand side of the pitch. Was denied by Tim Krul once and created several chances high up the pitch. Was prompt with tackling, recoveries as well as duels and delivered a standout display throughout the contest.
Did well to win back and retain possession deep down the midfield. Distributed upfront with his vision and passing technique, and also came close to finding the net around the half-hour mark but was denied by a last-ditch block from Godfrey.
Mateo Kovacic: 8.5
Had a stellar show in the middle of the park in the absence of N’Golo Kante. Dribbled past the Norwich midfield time and again and set it up for Abraham who found the winner midway through the second half with a sensational finish.
Ross Barkley: 7.5
His pace, power, as well as creativity, often opened up space in the Canaries backline and led to the creation of quite a few key opportunities. Was denied by Krul twice and saw a couple of his efforts blocked by the hosts which could have ended up into the back of the net.
Christian Pulisic: 7.5
Played his part in the build-up of Abraham’s opener and set it up for Mason Mount who finished sensationally to restore the lead around the 17th-minute mark. Looked a bit off-paced after the break, lost possession four times and was eventually taken off to be replaced by Willian late in the game.
Mason Mount: 8.5
The youngster showcased his composure yet again as he found the net yet again after picking up Pulisic’s pass early in the first half. His quick runs, link-up play and one-twos high up the pitch troubled Max Aarons all throughout in Norwich defence. Made his way for Marcos Alonso in the closing minutes after suffering a cramp.
Tammy Abraham: 9
Missed the decisive spot-kick against Liverpool to throw away the Super Cup glory, but Lampard’s trust was repaid this afternoon when the young Englishman netted a brace and ensured their maiden win of the new campaign in an intriguing battle. Was lauded by the travelling Blues while making way for Olivier Giroud with 15 minutes remaining of the regulation period.
Olivier Giroud: 6
Used his experience to slow down the tempo, hold on to the ball high up the pitch to avoid a late heartbreak on the road.
Played too little to warrant a rating.
Marcos Alonso: NA
Played too little to warrant a rating.
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