Chelsea edged past a fighting Liverpool side with a narrow 1-0 victory at the Rose Bowl, Pasadena, on Wednesday.
Gary Cahill’s 10th-minute strike proved to be the game’s only goal as Chelsea held on to beat fellow Premier League side Liverpool at the International Champions Cup in the United States of America. The game hardly looked like a friendly as tackles flew in all over the field. Dejan Lovren and Marko Grujic picked up knocks while Cesc Fabregas’ needless challenge on Reds defender Ragnar Klavan saw him receive a straight red.
Here are the player ratings for the 22 starters on the day:
Asmer Begovic: 6
The Chelsea goalkeeper kept a clean-sheet, but had very little to do throughout the course of the match.
Cesar Azpilicueta: 6
Had a fairly decent outing at right-back, but is expected to switch to the other side once the season commences.
Gary Cahill: 7.5
Scored the game’s solitary goal and was rock-solid at the heart of the Blues’ defence. Decent showing by the centre-half.
John Terry: 6.5
Proved to be an able partner to Cahill as he marginalized Firmino for the entire duration of the match.
Ola Aina: 5
The youngster seemed to be overwhelmed by the situation and the day’s opponents. However, it was arguably his first real test playing for Chelsea and can only get better with every passing game.
Cesc Fabregas: 4
The Spanish midfielder lost his cool and made a cynical and needless lunge on Liverpool’s Klavan. Luckily, the defender walked it off, but it was shambolic from the Chelsea player.
Nemanja Matic: 5
Was decent in midfield, but wasn’t the imposing presence he is known to be.
Was energetic for most parts of the game and showed Conte why he should be starting every game for the Blues
Bertrand Traore: 6
Had a couple of opportunities to score, but lacked the composure to slot it past Karius.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek: 6
Playing in an unfamiliar position, the academy product came out with flying colours, showing his versatility.
Victor Moses: 5
A disappointing outing by the Nigerian, and did very little to justify his place in the manager’s plans for the upcoming season.
Loris Karius: 6
Wasn’t tested to a great extent all evening, but could have done better in trying to stop Cahill’s header.
Connor Randall: 6
Another solid showing from Liverpool’s second-choice right-back. The young defender is making a case for an inclusion in the first team.
Ragnar Klavan: 7.5
A very solid debut from the Estonian, who read the game well and provided some crucial interceptions.
Dejan Lovren: 6.5
Was given the role of captaining the side, and the Serbian did manage to marshal the back-four with great efficiency. Was unfortunately subbed off as the goalkeeper ran into him, causing a concussion.
Alberto Moreno: 4
A torrid outing for the defender who is already under tremendous scrutiny. Klopp may well consider his options before deploying the Spaniard as his first choice left-back.
Kevin Stewart: 6
Started in central midfield, ended in defence, but provided a solid enough performance. Needs to become more confident on the ball though.
Ovie Ejaria: 8
The youngster ran like a machine all evening and his sublime pass almost saw Firmino equalize for Liverpool.
Marko Grujic: 6
Was substituted at the break due to a head injury, but while he was on the field, the new signing failed to impress.
Sadio Mane: 6
The former Southampton attacker really looks to have gelled with his teammates as he produced another impressive performance.
Philippe Coutinho: 6
A quiet evening for the Brazilian, who didn’t get on the ball as much as Liverpool needed.
Roberto Firmino: 6
Was fielded as a striker, but failed to justify his selection.