Bournemouth beats punchless Chelsea to end losing streak
Bournemouth snapped a five-match losing streak in a place that feels like home, toppling Chelsea 1-0 at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.
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Chelsea’s attack was woeful and Bournemouth needed VAR help to get Dan Gosling’s winner on the board.
The Blues fall for the fourth time in five league matches, and have seen their Top Four cushion slip to a maximum on five points.
Bournemouth gets some relief, rising 14th with 19 points.
Three things we learned
1. Bournemouth still loves the Bridge: Chelsea has now lost to Bournemouth at Stamford Bridge three times since 2015. The Cherries have back-to-back victories over the Blues for the first time ever. These are good things for Eddie Howe, and it was a much better show than the loss to Liverpool.
2. VAR helps Cherries to win: Gosling’s winner was a clever bit of football, the back-to-the-goal midfielder looping over Arrizabalaga. The linesman’s flag was up but Gosling had beaten the fray of people and an offside-appearing teammate had nothing to do with the play. A quality finish deserving of a winner.
3. Poor attack weakens Top Four cushion: Very poor from Chelsea’s attackers as a whole, with Willian the only players truly in-form on the day. Tammy Abraham was the best of an otherwise poor bunch, with Christian Pulisic and Mason Mount poor as starters and Callum Hudson-Odoi and Michy Batshuayi nearly irrelevant off the bench.
Frank Lampard hinted earlier this week that the club still needs to replace Eden Hazard. Transfer ban lifted, his men did little to convince him otherwise on Saturday.
Man of the Match: With respect to Simon Francis and Jefferson Lerma, the honor goes to Gosling for his creativity at outsmarting the Blues back line and beating Arrizabalaga.
Mason Mount’s sloppy touch betrayed a 26th minute Chelsea attack set up by Willian.
Christian Pulisic nearly nodded home at the back from a very tight angle in the 39th minute, one of few moments of danger for either side.
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Bournemouth regrouped at the break and Chelsea’s defenders had several strong moments in keeping shot attempts from reaching Kepa Arrizabalaga.
Pulisic led a charge into the right that led to a corner kick, and the Blues won another off a Willian shot.
Aaron Ramsdale made an incredible stop on Emerson’s solid point-blank header of a Cesar Azpilicueta flick.
Gosling thought he’d scored in the 84th minute with a clever shot, but the offside flag was raised.
VAR fixed that, and the losing streak ended in London.