Chelsea 2 Newcastle 1 – Saturday 12 January 5.30pm
We asked Jonathan Drape-Comyn to give us his match ratings after tonight’s match.
Newcastle losing 2-1 despite a spirited performance which also carried some threat.
The club now 18th in the table after only one win since November.
Dubravka 7 – Hard to tell from the away end whether he was caught too far from his line for the first goal, or whether it was just a good finish.
Made a wonderful save to deny Pedro at the start of the second half. No complaints.
Yedlin 6 – Offered our most potent attacking threat in the first half but atrocious in the second.
Still, not sure why that warrants him being brought off for Manquillo when we are chasing a goal.
Lejeune 8 – Distribution from the back was key when we were put under pressure.
Had a brilliant game and if we can get him back in the line up every week then he will be a real asset.
Lascelles 5 – Doesn’t quite look comfortable on the ball but solid defensively.
Big calls coming up for Rafa because on form, Lascelles is definitely behind Lejeune, Schar and Fernandez.
A strange one. I have no idea what I would do if I was Rafa.
Clark 7 – A great header for the goal. Had a solid game.
Ritchie 7 – Set up the goal and had a good game all round.
However, same argument that I always make is that he doesn’t know whether he is coming or going at left back.
When we play so deep it means that whenever he does get the ball, he isn’t anywhere near the opposition third enough to have an affect on the game. Does not thrive from a back five.
Longstaff 8 – May have looked a little out his depth to the naked eye, but when you consider that he was up against (in my opinion) the best central midfielder in the world by a distance in Kante, plus Jorginho, plus Kovacic, with the best player in the PL behind him in Hazard…
I think he had a really good game that he can be proud of. Would Shelvey and Diame have done any better? I doubt it. Thoroughly well done Sean Longstaff.
Hayden 8 – Was all over the park and showed great levels of fitness and determination.
If he wants away then I would just let him go but there was no sign against Chelsea that he isn’t committed.
Perez 6 – Didn’t do anything good or bad of note.
Impossible for him to have any sort of positive impact on the game under this formation.
Was constantly caught in no-man’s land between pressing the Chelsea defence or backing off and keeping position.
Atsu 6 – Again, another one who had no real positive impact on the game.
Not to blame as we struggled to get the ball far enough up the pitch to do so. A tough game for those attack-minded players.
Rondon 7 – Held up the ball brilliantly, didn’t have much going in terms of chances but really can’t fault him.
Deserves better service around him but considering Mike Ashley has put £50 mil of his own money (according to Rio Ferdinand…) into the side then he can’t complain.
Should really thank him.
Manquillo NA – Not on long enough.
Murphy NA – Not on long enough.
Rio Ferdinand 0 – Wa..er
Stats from BBC Sport:
Chelsea 2 Newcastle 1
Chelsea: Pedro 9, Willian 57
Newcastle: Clark 40
Possession was Chelsea 66% Newcastle 34%
Total shots were Chelsea 10 Newcastle 9
Shots on target were Chelsea 6 Newcastle 2
Corners were Chelsea 8 Newcastle 5
Referee: Chris Kavanagh
Dubravka, Yedlin (Manquillo 82), Lejeune, Lascelles, Clark, Ritchie, Hayden, Longstaff, Perez (Murphy 82), Atsu, Rondon
Woodman, Joselu, Schar, Fernandez, Sterry
(David Pleat reviews the match HERE)
(Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Chelsea 2 Newcastle 1 HERE)
You can follow the author on Twitter @_jonathandc