10-Man Chelsea Hold Off Liverpool in Entertaining 1-1 Draw at Anfield

10-Man Chelsea Hold Off Liverpool in Entertaining 1-1 Draw at Anfield

  • Chelsea had to play the entire second half with 10 men after Reece James was sent off late in the first period
  • The Blues took the lead through Kai Havertz but Liverpool pegged them back through a Mo Salah penalty
  • There was controversy in the build up to Liverpool’s penalty as Reece James was adjudged to have handled the ball
  • Despite the setback, Thomas Tuchel’s side hang on for a hard-earned point at Anfield

Chelsea showed impressive discipline and grit to hold off Liverpool in the second half with 10 men to claw an important point at Anfield.

Chelsea vs Liverpool
Chelsea played the second half with 10 men after Reece James was sent off. Photo by Michael Regan.
Source: Getty Images

Both sides went into the game with a 100% run in the Premier League after two games but it was Thomas Tuchel’s side who took initiative early on.

After cancelling each other in the opening exchanges, Tuchel’s side stunned the hosts in the 21st minute when Kai Havertz glanced a header past Alisson from a Reece James corner.

Liverpool were perhaps guilty of giving too much focus on danger man Romelu Lukaku, completely overlooking Havertz who headed home from a corner that initially looked like a fluke from James.

Mason Mount should have doubled his side's lead in the first half after a spurned an effort, and controversy soon ensued towards the end of the first half.

The home side went chasing for an equaliser soon after going behind, but Chelsea were resolute in their defending, up until the end of the first half when odds shifted against them.

In the closing moments of the first half, a goalmouth melee saw Reece James sent off for a handball after referee Anthony Taylor deemed the England right-back to have stopped a goal scoring opportunity with his hands.

Liverpool were subsequently given a penalty and Mohammed Salah made no mistake from 12 yards.

Chelsea were clearly incensed by the referee’s decision to send off Reece James and they made their feelings known at half time as they surrounded the referee in protest, with momentum now shifting to Liverpool with 45 minutes to go.

Tuchel made two changes at half time, with Kai Havertz having to make way for Thiago Silva as Chelsea tried to contain the game with 10 men.

The introduction of Thiago Silva seemed to calm the Chelsea defence, which was subjected to unrelenting attacks from Liverpool as the front three of Salah, Sadio Mane and Diogo Jota, who replaced Roberto Firmino, tried to find the goal to give them the lead.

With 10 men, Chelsea were forced to resort to counter attacks but they rarely looked like they would find a winner as Lukaku was isolated for large parts of the second half.

In the end, Tuchel’s second half tactic worked perfectly as both sides had to settle for a point in an entertaining encounter.

In the other game, Manchester City inflicted another painful defeat to Arsenal as Mikel Arteta’s side were comprehensively thrashed 5-0 at the Etihad stadium.

Arsenal’s flashes of brilliance would only last five minutes, however, as Manchester City exploited their leaky defence with virtually their first attack of the game.

Source: Sports Brief News