- Arsene Wenger contends the Blues' defence should have done enough to stop the Greek from scoring
- Chelsea had to rely on Mason Mount's second half penalty to grab a point at St Mary's
- Mount's goal cancelled out Minamino's opener earlier in the first half of the tie
Arsene Wenger has singled out for blame the trio of Kurt Zouma, Cesar Azpilicueta and Reece James following Chelsea's disappointing draw against Southampton.
The Blues were held to a 1-1 draw at the Saints on Saturday, February 21, to miss a chance to solidify their place in fourth on the standings.
The Thomas Tuchel-tutored side fell to a Takumi Minamino goal in the 33rd minute of the clash and had to rely on a Mason Mount penalty in the second half to secure a point at St Mary's.
Wenger contends Zouma, Azpilicueta and James were largely responsible for Minamino's opener and should have done enough to stop the Greek from scoring.
Nathan Redmond tore apart Chelsea's defence before he set up the Liverpool loanee who drew Azpilicueta to his backside before beating Édouard Mendy in goal. Wenger said via Daily Star:
"This guy (Minamino) is an artist in his mind but I would say it’s as well an art of bad defending from Chelsea.
"Zouma has turned completely, the space between him and Azpilicueta. Look where Reece James is… he should be in there and Azpilicueta much more in. There is no communication and no taking information but what the striker does is exceptional."
The result meant Chelsea will keep their place in fourth with 43 points, but face the prospect of dropping to fifth depending on the outcome of West Ham United's match against Tottenham Hotspur.
Tuchel, however, remain unbeaten across competitions since his arrival at Stamford Bridge and will be looking to keep the record when his wards take on Atletico Madrid in the first leg of their last 16 Champions League tie on Tuesday, February 23.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng earlier reported that Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho has stated that despite the unimpressive form of his team in the Premier League lately, Spurs can still make top four.
Spurs had a sensational start to the season as the were on top of the standings for some time before they saw themselves down the ladder following dismal run of recent results.
Babajide is a digital publishing expert, an avid sports content thinker, researcher and writer. He is a graduate of Guidance and Counselling, having bagged his B.SC (ED) from the Ekiti State University. He can be reached on Twitter @JideOrevba