During 45 minutes of Saturday’s royal turmoil between Liverpool and Chelsea, one factor was clear: we witnessed two real Premier League challengers locking horns.
The depth, aggression and high quality of the show was plain, and either side proved precisely why they’ve received massive cutlery in current seasons.
A laborious fought battle and a vital level alongside the best way. ? #LIVCHE pic.twitter.com/Nt7kuJkUms
– Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) 28 August 2021
In the top, the competitors steadiness exterior of Kilter was thrown by Reece James’ purple card after the halftime battle, however there was sufficient proof that we might title the reds and the blues as “up there at the end of the season”.
The first half was probably the most intense half of the season thus far. Liverpool began with their typical gusto and business, whereas Chelsea took benefit of Thomas Tuchel’s intricate taking part in subject and realized the Reds’ early enthusiasm.
Then got here the suction punch. Mason Mount whipped a nook into the entrance put up, and Kai Havertz waited to throw the ball over Alisson Becker and into the online with a shocking header. From that second on, Chelsea started to flex their muscle tissue.
Reece James despatched off for handball on the road after a prolonged VAR assessment – Mo Salah fires Liverpool stage from the pitch
? Watch #LIVCHE on Sky Sports PL pic.twitter.com/rbeLvqHOUq
– Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) August 28, 2021
Romelu Lukaku seemed critically threatening, and the convenience with which he rolled Joel Matip and located that his flying teammates instructed that the Reds ought to have interaction in a slugging contest, whether or not they preferred it or not. Momentum swung uncontrollably, with the most effective defenders, midfielders and attackers within the league going to conflict.
Then got here the turning level. The introduction of Diogo Jota simply earlier than half-time bore fruit instantly, as he received a spot-kick via sheer endurance and pressured James to deal with the ball on the road.
James bought his marching orders and let in a penalty, and Mohamed Salah did the remaining to create a grandstand second half. There appeared to be just one consequence within the match, however Chelsea confirmed their metal to frustrate the hosts.
The Anfield crowd was behind Liverpool from the beginning and the photographs and crosses rained down on Edouard Mendy and his again guard. The Blues typically rode their luck and relied on the French striker’s experience, however survived the storm to outlive the 20-minute barrier.
A Hero on the Back / Michael Regan / Getty Images
From then on, Chelsea managed the sport brilliantly, slowed down and received energy-saving free kicks everywhere in the pitch. Anfield loyalists grew to become stressed when the gamers jerked and puffed, and there was a sense that the Blues now had way more management over their very own future than anticipated.
This can occur while you meet 10 males, particularly a website that’s as nicely drilled and arranged as Tuchel’s boys. When the final whistle blew, the distinction in feelings was apparent.
The Liverpool stars have been pissed off that they’d put a lot power into it and have little to point out for it in opposition to a group that was a person of sunshine, and Chelsea’s heroes congratulated one another as in the event that they had collected all three factors.
However, we discovered a vital factor from the assembly. The incontrovertible fact that Klopp and co. have been disenchanted to have simply pulled with the European champions reveals that they nonetheless boast the identical excessive calls for on their very own title glory 2020.
Title Rivals / Michael Regan / Getty Images
And as for Chelsea, their capability to repel one of the harmful assaults in Europe in entrance of a packed, motivated crowd left little doubt about their togetherness, capability and general energy.
It’s going to be a hell of a struggle at the highest.