Football Features

England’s best ‘orthodox’ RB right now? Every player rated from Chelsea 0-0 Spurs

By Muhammad Butt

Published: 18:48, 29 November 2020

In a tense but fairly uneventful afternoon of football, Chelsea and Spurs played out a 0-0 draw at Stamford Bridge.

The result was enough to send Spurs back to the top of the table, one point ahead of Liverpool (who they will face mid-December).

Meanwhile, Chelsea remain in third and just two points from first place. And considering how Manchester United can go level on points if they win their game in hand, the Premier League title race still looks thrillingly open 10 games in.

Here’s how the players rated at Stamford Bridge this afternoon.

Chelsea

Edouard Mendy – 7 – Not tested too much but was still extremely solid, bar one moment of miscommunication with N’Golo Kanté (which he sorted out anyway).

Reece James – 8 – A sublime display from the best orthodox right-back in England right now. Where Aaron Wan-Bissaka is a masterful defender and Trent Alexander-Arnold is a game-changing genius of a creator, James is just a good ol’ fashioned up-and-down full-back. That sounds like damning with faint praise but so much of football is about doing the little things right, and Reece James always does the little things right.

A fast and furious worker who defends diligently and attacks with a simple creativity. Reece James booms crosses into the box, and that’s it. He makes crosses. All manner of crosses. From all angles. Against Spurs, he was Chelsea’s biggest creative outlet and put in some tasty balls that should have been attacked better. Deserved to create the match-winner.

Kurt Zouma – 6 – As comfortable a display as he could have hoped for, with Kane & Son not at their furious best. Awful pass at the end nearly gave Spurs a clean look at goal.

Thiago Silva – 7 – Struggled to handle Spurs’ movement in the very early going but settled soon after as Spurs’ caution.

Ben Chilwell – 7 – A hard-working performance on the left.

N’Golo Kanté – 6 – Worked hard.

Mateo Kovacic – 7 – Was the best midfielder on the pitch. Took control of midfield, battling Tanguy Ndombele and then outdoing everyone else. Had more tackles (4) and interceptions (3) than anyone else in the game. The Croatian continues to grow under Lampard and Morris.

Mason Mount – 7 – Should have fed Werner earlier in what turned out to be a disallowed goal, but was his usual industrious self and produced the best shot of the game with a stinging drive from 25 yards.

Hakim Ziyech – 7 – Played some deliriously good passes and crosses into the box but did so before the man to take advantage of them (Olivier Giroud) was even on the pitch. Good, but not as good as he should have been.

Timo Werner – 5 – Had a stunning finish ruled out early on but beyond that was mostly quiet as Spurs’ low block neutered his strengths.

Tammy Abraham – 5 – A disappointing display against two centre-backs who clearly could not handle his movement. Abraham repeatedly failed to truly test Hugo Lloris, failing to hit the target despite taking a game-high four shots.

Substitutes:

Christian Pulisic (for Werner 74′) – 5 – Didn’t have much impact, but did defend well.

Olivier Giroud (for Abraham 79′) – 4 – Had a superb chance to really test Lloris and maybe win the game late on but scuffed his shot.

Kai Havertz (for Ziyech 83′) – n/a – Came on late.

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Spurs

Hugo Lloris – 7 – An impressive performance. Made big saves when he had to.

Serge Aurier – 7 – Good forward raids early on but faded badly there. However he worked furiously defensively, with joint-team-highs in tackles and interceptions.

Joe Rodon – 6 – Decent on his debut, although he clearly struggled with the movement of Tammy Abraham and very nearly handed Olivier Giroud the game-winner on a plate.

Eric Dier – 6 – Looked significantly weaker without Alderweireld next to him. Nowhere near as commanding.

Sergio Reguilon – 7 – Worked hard up and down the left-flank.

Moussa Sissoko – 5 – Ran and ran in midfield but didn’t do anything either defensively or with the ball. Oddly out of his depth for a game that was really well-suited for his talents.

Pierre-Emil Hojbjerg – 7 – As always, a tenacious performer in the middle of the pitch.

Tanguy Ndombele – 7 – Electric with the ball at his feet, dancing through midfield on more than one occasion. The highlight of an otherwise dreary match of football. Possesses so much potential, needing only the trust of his coach.

Heung-min Son – 5 – Profoundly disappointing. There was none of the sharp movement or decisive play we’ve seen of late and Chelsea’s defenders managed to keep him quiet. Didn’t have a single shot.

Steven Bergwijn – 6 – Chelsea’s best and brightest attacker. Unafraid to move the ball quickly or shoot sharply.

Harry Kane – 5 – Dropped deep on more than one occasion but never did his damage in an area that was likely to hurt Chelsea.

Substitutes:

Giovani Lo Celso (for Ndombele 65′) – 4 – Missed a golden chance to snatch it for Spurs when he wafted a weird cross-shot instead of either shooting or crossing or literally anything bar what he did.

Ben Davies (for Bergwijn 89′ – n/a – Came on late.

Lucas Moura (for Son 90’+2) – n/a – Came on late.

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