Football Features

Chelsea 4-0 Malmo: Injuries mar solid performance from Blues in biggest win under Thomas Tuchel

By Harry Edwards

Published: 22:28, 20 October 2021


Chelsea recorded their biggest win under Thomas Tuchel in beating Malmo 4-0 in the Champions League on Wednesday night.

The Blues went into the game knowing only a win would do having lost 1-0 to Juventus in gameweek two and once Chelsea got up and running, there was little doubt in the result.

Two goals in either half were enough for Chelsea who remain second in Group H after Juventus beat Zenit 1-0 in Russia.

Here’s how the players rated at Stamford Bridge:

Chelsea

Edouard Mendy – 5 – Might as well have been sitting in the Shed End, he had so little to do.

Andreas Christensen – 8 – Opened the scoring for Chelsea with a finely-taken volley after a late run into the box, grabbing his first Chelsea goal in his 137th appearance. Defensively kept the Malmo attack nullified but also looked to help Chelsea advance with the ball at his feet.

Thiago Silva – 8 – Another solid defensive performance, protecting Mendy’s goal and he sent in an absolutely delicious cross into the box for Christensen’s goal.

Antonio Rudiger – 8 – A peak Rudiger performance once Chelsea had taken control, constantly looking to run through the Malmo midfield and defence. It was his extremely high pressing that forced the error early on in the second half before bullying his way into the box to win Chelsea’s second penalty. Saw his name in lights with a late free-kick attempt but it sailed into the Matthew Harding Lower. He’s no Alex.

Cesar Azpilicueta – 7 – In the first half you could be mistaken for thinking Azpilicueta was playing as a No.10 he was so high up the pitch. Did not give the Malmo defence a moment’s rest before coming off with the result sealed.

N’Golo Kante – 7 – Helped control the midfield and popped up everywhere across the pitch, frustrating Malmo. Rested after 65 minutes.

Jorginho – 9 – Another excellent performance from the Uefa Player of the Year and not just because of the goals. The Italian completed 72 of his 82 passes on the night including 30 in the final third (more than any other player) and kept his side ticking from the midfield with eight tackles. Then, of course, he stepped up to blast his penalties past two difference goalkeepers, going for power more than placement.

Ben Chilwell – 7 – Like Azpilicueta, Chilwell started the game very advanced and tucked in to overload the Malmo defence but he then took a step back as Chelsea overloaded their right-hand side. A solid performance nonetheless.

Mason Mount – 7 – This was Mount back to his usual self after a handful of poor performances this season, linking up well with Azpilicueta to cause Malmo’s left flank problems.

Timo Werner – 5 – Timo Werner cannot catch a break. The German had a poor miss early on from inside the six yard box that might have counted if he had scored despite the offside flag going up. He didn’t make it to half time, pulling up with what appeared to be a hamstring injury running into the box. Went straight down the tunnel.

Romelu Lukaku – 6 – The Belgian had a bright start, sending a cross for Werner’s miss and then having a deflected effort saved early on. Won the penalty for Chelsea’s second but was injured in the process and not risked, coming off after Jorginho had converted. A worry for Chelsea.


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Substitutes:

Kai Havertz (for Lukaku 23′) – 7 – The German had a slow start to the game after replacing Lukaku but slowly grew and, just before half time, had a good opportunity to score but saw his effort saved. He wouldn’t have to wait too long into the second half for his goal, beating the goalkeeper with a neat chip that only boosted his confidence. He’ll be the man leading the line for Chelsea in the coming weeks, so this was a good starting point.

Callum Hudson-Odoi (for Werner 44′) – 8 – There were cries for him to start and Callum Hudson-Odoi showed why with an excellent performance after replacing Werner. While Havertz got the goal, Chelsea’s third was all about Hudson-Odoi as he won the ball back inside his own half before running 50 yards to play the German in. This should put him ahead of Christian Pulisic for the weekend (if the American is fit).

Saul Niguez (for Kante 65′) – 6 – Didn’t really do much after coming on but helped keep Chelsea in control.

Reece James (for Azpilicueta 66′) – 6 – Filled in Azpilicueta’s space as advanced winger quite well, keeping the pressure up though Malmo were done at this point.

Marcos Alonso (for Chilwell 66′) – 6 – A decent performance from the Spaniard but provided no signs of taking his starting role off Chilwell.

Malmo

Johan Dahlin – 6 – Produced a good save to stop Lukaku’s deflected shot and could do very little about Chelsea’s two first-half goals, beaten by the bounce for the opener and then a good penalty. Replaced at half time.

Eric Larsson – 4 – It was a night to forget for Malmo’s defenders and Eric Larsson will not want to watch the game back, especially for his role in the defeat. The Swede was clumsy in barging Rudiger in the back for Chelsea’s second penalty having been slow to get back into position following a turnover.

Lasse Nielsen – 4 – Could not handle Lukaku and brought the Belgian down for Chelsea’s first penalty by a combination of a pull and a late tackle.

Franz Brorsson – 3 – The worst of the Malmo defenders as he really struggled to deal with the Mount-Azpilicueta partnership. Not good at all.

Jo Inge Berget – 5 – Had more touches than any other Malmo player but he didn’t really have much impact on the game.

Sergio Pena – 3 – Despite having 41 touches, Pena completed just 13 passes (from 16 attempts) but was like tissue when put under pressure by Rudiger in the build up to the second penalty. Wanted time on the ball that he was never going to get at Stamford Bridge.

Bonke Innocent – 4 – Let Christensen run behind him for the opening goal and made no real attempt to clear Silva’s cross but wasn’t the worst – not that it’s a feat.

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Anders Christiansen – 3 – Completely overrun in midfield and absent for his 59 minutes on the pitch, having just 19 touches of the bacll.

Martin Olsson – 5 – Making his return to England, Olsson was Malmo’s biggest attacking threat on the night putting in three crosses but he never truly troubled Chelsea.

Antonio Colak – 4 – Skied Malmo’s best opportunity in first half and that was about it. Seriously isolated.

Veljko Birmancevic – 4 – Played a good ball over Chelsea defence for Colak’s effort but was taken off at half-time after struggling. No Malmo player had fewer touches.

Substitutes:

Ismael Diawara (for Dahlin 45′) – 5 – Came on at half time to concede twice, unable to do much about either goal like Dahlin. No major saves, however.

Abdul Abubakari (for Birmancevic 45′) – 4 – Made no difference to the Malmo attack and had just 14 touches.

Erdal Rakip (for Pena 58′) – 4 – Struggled like the man he replaced.

Adi Nalic (for Christiansen 59′) – 5 – Brought more than Christiansen into the midfield but Chelsea had taken their foot off the gas by the time of his arrival.

Niklas Moisander (for Berget 84′) – N/A – A late sub.

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