Bright Start For Maurizio Sarri’s Chelsea!

Maurizio Sarri watched on as his new Chelsea side comfortably recorded a 3-0 win over Huddersfield Town in their opening Premier League match of the season.

The Italian noted after the game that the scoreline flattered his team a bit and that they struggled initially to deal with the physicality of their opponents:

“The game was more difficult than the result. If you see the result, you think it was a very easy match, but in the first half it was very difficult against physical opponents.

“We are not a physical team so for 20 minutes we were in trouble but we did very well.”

Chelsea fans will be desperate to see what comes when the side are playing at their full potential.

In truth though, the London side did boss the opening game. They had 63% of possession, had thirteen shots compared to The Terriers six efforts and they also had more on target and more corners than their opponents.

The Blues scored with their first shot at goal but it was from a very unexpected source in N’Golo Kante.

Fresh from winning the World Cup in the summer, the French midfielder found himself in unfamiliar territory inside Huddersfield’s penalty area and he managed to scuff his shot beyond the opposition goalkeeper to give Chelsea the lead on the thirty-fourth minute.

Kante has now scored just as many Premier League goals this term as he has in each of the last four years!

New summer signing Jorginho doubled Chelsea’s lead just before the half-time break with a cooly taken penalty.

The Italian played under Sarri at Napoli and he’ll be a key component as Maurizio tries to implement his free flowing passing style. The deep-laying playmaker enjoyed a 94% passing success rate on his debut as he made sixty-six passes.

The final goal came with just ten minutes to go.

Star man Eden Hazard made a cameo from the bench, after his World exploits with Belgium, and that was enough time for him to cut through the Terriers defence before slipping in Pedro and the Spaniard slotted his chance away into the far corner.

The Spanish forward has recently signed a contract extension, much to the pleasure of his new boss:

“I’m very happy about this,”

“Pedro is very important for us.”

“He is a technical player. Very usable for me. And I think I’m really happy about the new contract.”

“Pedro is a top player.”

Sarri will respect Pedro’s footballing upbringing at Barcelona and will hope that his experience can help in bedding in the Italian coach’s new philosophy at Stamford Brigde.

It could be a very big season ahead for David Luiz.

The Brazilian defender looked to be a goner under previous boss Antonio Conte but his ability to pick a pass from the backline seems to have impressed his new gaffer. Luiz was comfortable at the back and attempted ninety-three passes during the game (more than any other player) and he had a 92.5% success rate.

New keeper Kepa had very little to do but the Spaniard will be happy to have kept a cleansheet on his debut, after becoming the world’s most expensive goalkeeper earlier in the week. He seemed very vocal in between the sticks but tougher tests will surely follow and he’ll be judged on those.

Sarri will know that things can improve and should improve as everyone at the club gets used to his way of playing.

The Italian will be hoping that striker Alvaro Morata can find the net as soon as possible. You can see that the hitman is still lacking in confidence. If his struggles continue then you’d expect Olivier Giroud to come in and take his place.

Obviously having Hazard in from he start will be a huge bonus. You also have talented loanee Mateo Kovacic to come in and he’ll add even more class to the midfield three.

It has been an exciting start to the Maurizio Sarri era at Chelsea. As I’ve previously stated, sterner opponents will do more to test them. But for now, The Blues support can enjoy the moment and be hopeful that they can have a strong season this term.

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