Chelsea battled their way to a 2-0 away win over Hull City thanks to two second half goals from forwards Willian and Diego Costa

Chelsea started the game slowly, with the Blues doing little to justify the majority share of possession, as the Tigers chose to sit back and absorb pressure while attacking on a few occasions. The two sides went into the half-time level but Conte seemed to have breathed life into the squad with his team talk at the break as the Blues came out dominant when the play resumed.

Willian opened the scoring around the hour mark with a curling shot past David Marshall and Diego Costa continued his run of scoring with a similar goal within minutes of the Brazilian’s attempt. Chelsea held off for an important 2-0 win away from Stamford Bridge as The Hard Tackle takes a look at some of the significant talking points from the game.

1. DieGOAL Costa shows no signs of stopping

Diego Costa had a wonderful debut season at Chelsea, but seemed to taper off a bit in the second season along with the rest of the squad. There were multiple rumours of the forward leaving Stamford Bridge in the summer with reports that the Spaniard himself had told Chelsea authorities he wished for a move back to Atletico Madrid.

However, the player remained at Stamford Bridge and the decision to keep the striker is starting to pay huge dividends.

The 27-year-old has been in menacing form with 6 goals in the 7 Premier League thus far and has been one of the key reasons of the good start to the campaign under Antonio Conte. The player has gained back his status of being a regular name on the team sheet and given his current form, Diego Costa doesn’t look like he’s going anywhere anytime soon.

2. Conte’s decision to deploy 3 man at the back vindicated with clean sheet

Antonio Conte needed a win to get the season back on track and the Italian took the risk of pulling out his 3-man central defence tactic as Chelsea looked to secure a win against Hull City. The Blues looked okay at the back as Hull City had little chances, but also had their moments where they could not make the best of their chances.

However, Chelsea’s defence prevailed as the Blues managed to keep a clean sheet. Even though that does not mean a successful transition to the 3-man central defence tactic, but the clean sheet would go a long way in making Conte’s mind about deploying this more often than he has done up until now.

3. Impressive Moses giving second wind to his Chelsea career

Victor Moses has failed to lock down a spot in the Chelsea first-team setup ever since making the move from Wigan Atheltic. The player has been mostly out on loan but was included in the first-team by Conte and the Nigerian international made his first Chelsea start in almost 4 years at the right wing-back position.

The 25-year-old was arguably, Chelsea’s best player in the first half and was almost everywhere on the pitch. This performance will give him more confidence and Conte could find in Moses, a combination of strength and pace, who could be the perfect fit for the wing-back position.

4. Lack of attack and creative intent cause of worry for Mike Phelan

Mike Phelan has done wonderfully well in order to get Hull to where they are this season after the team looked in shambles with the departure of Steve Bruce. However, the form seems to have faded away and Hull are seen sitting deep and absorbing pressure for most of the 90 minutes without venturing forward too often.

In the game against Chelsea, they had a decent amount of possession but failed to trouble their opposition, creating only 5 chances compared to Chelsea’s 16. The defence seems to be doing fine but Phelan needs to sort the attack out if they are to avoid the drop without much problem.

5. Conte walks the talk by dropping Ivanovic

Antonio Conte had a chat with Thierry Henry in the lead-up to the game against Liverpool wherein he said he prefers to kill players that don’t follow his orders or do not exude the passion for the game. Branislav Ivanovic is a player the fans have been highly critical of and despite the criticism, the Serbian has been a regular feature under every manager.

The last manager to drop the player was Andre Vilas-Boas, who was then sacked as a result of a squad revolt. Conte is known for his no-holds-barred character and the Italian showed a glimpse of it by dropping the underperforming Ivanovic, as he deployed a 3-man central defence with David Luiz at the heart of it.

Conte seems to have the backing of the board and the Italian does not seem to afraid of taking bold decisions, even after a couple of unconvincing results, wherein managers would have often gone for the tried and tested.

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