Chelsea made an inauspicious start to life under Frank Lampard as they were thrashed 4-0 by Manchester United in their Premier League opener on Sunday.
Chelsea made a great start as they took the game to Manchester United on their own turf and should have had an early lead, but the post denied Tammy Abraham’s well-struck effort. The Blues kept coming at their hosts. but against the run of play United took the lead after Kurt Zouma brought Marcus Rashford down in the box, who dispatched a great penalty.
Ross Barkley came close to equalising for Chelsea in the 39th minute but was denied by David de Gea, while Emerson Palmieri’s thunderous effort a minute later cannoned off the woodwork. The Italian international fired another fierce shot at the Manchester United goal early into the second period, but de Gea was in the way.
A little after the hour mark though, Lampard’s side were hit with a sucker punch as Anthony Martial poked home from close range, before Rashford rounded off a devastating counter a minute later to kill the game off. Substitute Daniel James added a fourth late on to heap further misery on Chelsea in their first game of the 2019-20 Premier League.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) August 11, 2019
Here’s how we rated the performances of the Blues’ stars on what was a disappointing outing at Old Trafford.
Kepa Arrizabalaga: 5/10
Not a lot he could have done about Rashford’s well-hit penalty. Apart from that, he wasn’t tested a whole lot in the first-half. Shipped in three as the defence in front of him capitulated after the break.
Cesar Azpilicueta: 3/10
The Chelsea captain started well and looked particularly dangerous romping forward, but struggled big time after the break. Caught on the wrong side of Martial for the second goal, while he could not catch up with Rashford leading to the third. Caught out in the build-up for the fourth as well.
Andreas Christensen: 5/10
Was one of Chelsea’s more reliable defenders on the day, as the Dane dealt with the threat of Martial and Rashford fairly well for most of the first-half. The two-minute defensive collapse after the break though indicated he still has a long way to go. Would perhaps fare better with an experienced partner like Antonio Rudiger.
Kurt Zouma: 3/10
A disastrous outing for the Frenchman. Did not look comfortable playing out from the back as an early misplaced pass presented Martial with a great chance. Then gave away the penalty with a clumsy foul before picking up a booking for a rash challenge. Not confident enough on the ball, wasted possession on multiple occasions.
Emerson Palmieri: 6.5/10
One of the few Chelsea players who had an impressive game on Sunday. Was a threat going forward down the left side and came close to scoring on three separate occasions with three powerful attempts, but was denied by the post once and twice by de Gea.
Starting as a part of the two-man midfield pivot, the Italian international looked good in the first period, showing his range of distribution to kickstart moves. Did not offer a whole lot after the break though, and was part of the midfield that was overrun as United asserted themselves. Subbed off for N’Golo Kante.
Mateo Kovacic: 6/10
Having made his move to Chelsea permanent, the Croat did little wrong in the first game of the new season, but didn’t exactly stand out either. Moved the ball sharply around and worked hard, but seemed to lack the creative touch.
Started brightly and was part of some nice attacking moves, but tapered off quickly as he got sloppy in possession. Lost the ball leading up to the penalty in the first period and struggled to make much of an impact, but cannot fault the amount of work he puts in.
Mason Mount: 6/10
Making his competitive debut for Chelsea, the academy product started off sharply. Got into good positions constantly, linked up well with his teammates and even had a shot at goal. Looked confident, but his decision-making was a bit of a let down at times. Petered out with time, but there were glimpses of his immense ability on display.
Ross Barkley: 5/10
Starting out on the left side, the England international had a difficult time early on against the impressive Aaron Wan-Bissaka. Started to get more effective as he started to drift in centrally and forced a fine save from de Gea. Hooked off early in the second-half for Christian Pulisic, though.
Tammy Abraham: 5/10
Almost opened the scoring just four minutes in with a powerful hit, but the post denied him a dream start. Tried to hold the ball and bring others into play, but was marshaled well by Manchester United’s defence. Lost the ball to Harry Maguire in the lead-up to United’s second. Needs to be stronger if Chelsea are to use him as the lone striker.
Christian Pulisic: 5/10
Replaced Barkley a little before the hour-mark to make his Premier League debut. Showed a couple of neat touches, but was largely ineffective and couldn’t help Chelsea claw their way back into the game.
Olivier Giroud: 5/10
Came on in place of Abraham immediately after United’s second goal. Found it difficult going up against Harry Maguire and made little impact.
N’Golo Kante: 5/10
Replaced Jorginho with less than twenty minutes left. Made a good last-ditch tackle to deny Manchester United a chance, but looked rusty and was overran on occasions. Booked.