Werner misfortune continuesTimo Werner has not had it particularly easy since joining Chelsea from RB Leipzig in the summer of 2020.
Things started off well for the German with eight goals in his opening 11 matches for the Blues, but only four more followed during the 2020/21
It wasn’t for the want of trying, however. During his debut season, Werner had 15 goals ruled out by a combination of the linesmen and VAR.
Understandably, the 25-year-old felt his first year in Chelsea blue was the most unfortunate of his career.
The hope was this campaign would be different, that the arrival of Romelu Lukaku would liberate Werner and unlock his goalscoring potential.
The German international hasn’t had too many opportunities to make that happen. Against Southampton this afternoon, he was.
Deployed on the right of an attacking three alongside Lukaku and Callum Hudson-Odoi, Werner was given licence to stretch the Southampton backline,
something he did wilfully, and come inside into the penalty area to offer a tandem threat with Chelsea’s Belgian star.Shortly before half-time, it appeared Thomas Tuchel’s strategy had paid off when Werner was on hand to head home from a perfectly weighted Hudson-Odoi cross.
Chelsea’s players celebrated, Southampton’s set up to restart the game from the centre circle, but then came VAR
It was confirmed on the big screens at Stamford Bridge that Mike Dean was reviewing the goal back at Stockley Park.
The infringement? A rather soft challenge by Cesar Azpilicueta on Kyle Walker-Peters in the build-up.Referee Martin Atkinson was advised to go to the monitor to view the footage and he decided to rule the goal out.
So yet again Werner was denied by the officials.
Fortunately, with a little more than five minutes of the contest remaining, Werner’s luck changed as he was on hand to fire home from close range following a Cesar Azpilicueta cross.
He will hope that continues in the weeks ahead
Chalobah celebrationChelsea had the ball in the Southampton net on three occasions in the opening period.
Yet it was only Trevoh Chalobah’s early header that was allowed to stand by the officials.
The academy graduate was handed his first Premier League start since the 3-0 victory over Aston Villa and impressed on the right of the back three.
He took his goal, a stooped header from a corner, excellently.
But what was equally as impressive was that it was he that started the attack which led to the corner with intricate footwork on the edge of the Chelsea penalty area.Chalobah continues to look at home in this Chelsea side.
He has been with the club since the age of eight, so perhaps that is no surprise.
And his celebration after putting the Blues ahead was one of a club icon.
The 22-year-old ran towards those Chelsea supporters in the lower East Stand and produced a knee slide with arms out wide reminiscent of a certain Didier Drogba.
Trevoh Chalobah celebrates scoring for Chelsea against Southampton
Tuchel’s anger with ChilwellFor the first time this season, Chilwell started a game for Chelsea in the Premier League.
The England international has been stuck behind Marcos Alonso so needed to impress Tuchel ahead of the international break.
Whether he did that is up for debate. Early on Chilwell was somewhat hesitant to get forward and there was one instance when a nice reverse pass from Hudson-
Odoi rolled away harmlessly behind the Southampton defence because the wing-back had halted his run.Tuchel did not like that.
Not one bit. And from the touchline, he bellowed Chilwell’s name three times in quick succession to try to get the 24-year-old’s attention.
When Chilwell finally did make eye contact, the message was simple from the Blues head coach: be braver in the final third.
It was a message noted by Chilwell for the remainder of the contest as he was constantly prepared to run behind the Southampton defence.
He came close to scoring in the opening period only to be denied by a fine save from Alex McCarthy.
After the half-time interval, Chilwell was at fault for Southampton’s equaliser as he brought down Tino Livramento in the penalty area.
It was a difficult moment.
Fortunately, there was redemption late on for Chilwell as he fired home Chelsea’s third goal of the afternoon.
The celebration spoke volumes for the standing the defender has in the dressing room as he was embraced by every member of the side.