Marcos Alonso was the saviour for Chelsea as they manage to salvage a point against relegation battlers Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium on Saturday.
The game was off to a bright start with both teams threatening to score. But, eventually it was Chelsea who broke the deadlock in the 33rd minute, as Marcos Alonso fired home a thunderous effort after Olivier Giroud’s strike had bounced off the crossbar.
Bournemouth hit back in the second half as a quickfire double from Jefferson Lerma and Joshua King stunned Chelsea and left them staring at a defeat. However, with five minutes left on the clock, Alonso was at hand to head home another rebound, after Pedro’s initial hit was saved by Aaron Ramsdale, to rescue a point for Chelsea.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) February 29, 2020
Here’s how we rated the performances of Frank Lampard’s stars on their day out at the south coast club;
Willy Caballero: 7/10
Started out very well, making two important stops to deny Phillip Billing and Callum Wilson early in the first half. Got his hands to Lerma’s header, but failed to keep it out as Bournemouth equalized. No chance for the Cherries’ second goal though, but made another crucial block to keep Wilson out at 2-1 and keep Chelsea in the game.
Cesar Azpilicueta: 6/10
Starting as the right-sided centre-back in the Chelsea’s three-man backline, the captain had a few problems with the dangerous King early on, but improved with time and enjoyed a fairly solid outing in defence. Always looked to get forward when the opportunity presented itself and delivered a couple of teasing crosses into the box as well.
Andreas Christensen: 5/10
The Danish centre-half enjoyed a strong first half against Bournemouth, managing to keep a lid on the dangerous Wilson for most parts. Caught napping by the Cherries’ intensity early in the second period though and found it difficult to recover. Booked for a cynical foul on Wilson after being beaten by the striker.
Fikayo Tomori: 4/10
Starting his first game since December, Tomori was carrying a bit of ring-rust into the game and it showed. Was robbed by Billing leading to a great chance for the hosts early in the game and generally failed to impose himself on the proceedings. His pace did come in handy on occasions to tackle the threat posed by Bournemouth, but was sacrificed for Willian after Chelsea went behind.
Reece James: 6/10
The academy ace got forward with purpose on the right-wing every time the opportunity presented itself. However, his end product was found wanting, until he delivered a fine cross for Giroud in the lead-up to the opening goal. Nonetheless, lacked the desired precision and potency on his final ball for large parts of the game on Saturday.
Booked early in the game for a late challenge on Billing. It was his tenth yellow card of the season, which means Jorginho will now miss Chelsea’s next two league outings. Was neat and tidy in possession, but slowed down the tempo of the game at times, while being unable to match the intensity shown by his Bournemouth counterparts. Taken off for Ross Barkley in the 64th minute.
Mateo Kovacic: 5/10
A dip in performance levels after a fine showing in midweek against Bayern Munich for the Croatian, who started off sluggishly, but helped Chelsea regain control in the first half. Was overpowered by Lerma for Bournemouth’s first goal. Lacked the accuracy and incision in his passing, while he was let down by his touch on numerous occasions.
Marcos Alonso: 8/10
Alonso was at the right place at the right time to power home a brilliantly hit strike to put Chelsea in front and then was once again positioned brilliantly to head home the equalizer late in the game. Has now scored three goals within a week, but missed a great chance in injury time to win it for Chelsea, sending his header narrowly wide. Defensively, the Spaniard was not always solid and left spaces in behind.
The 32-year-old attacker put in a real shift at the Vitality Stadium, working hard throughout the game. Enjoyed some nice moments linking up with Giroud and Mason Mount, but the end product wasn’t there. It was his volleyed strike that was saved by Ramsdale, leading to Chelsea’s late equalizer.
Mason Mount: 7/10
Made a bright start to the game, drawing a couple of saves from Ramsdale in the first period. Continued to look sharp after the break with his driving runs and link-up play with his attacking partners looking sharp throughout. Good energy and intent from the Englishman.
Olivier Giroud: 6/10
Starting his third match in a row, the Frenchman once again showed what he brings to the table, dropping deep in order to link up play and create spaces for the runners behind him. A fine flicked effort from James’ cross hit the crossbar leading to Alonso’s opener. Missed a chance in the second period though and was taken off Michy Batshuay in the latter stages of the game.
Thrown on in place of Tomori, the Brazilian did not see a lot of the ball and could not make a difference to the outcome.
Ross Barkley: 5/10
Replaced Jorginho just a little after the hour mark. Struggled to make any meaningful impact on the game.
Michy Batshuayi: 5/10
Came on for Giroud with less than twenty minutes left. Had a goal chalked off for offside and saw another effort being saved.