[Player Ratings] Newcastle 2-0 Chelsea: Misery on Tyneside for Mourinho’s men
Chelsea lost ground on league leaders Arsenal as a poor second half showing condemned them to a 2-0 defeat at Newcastle. Here are player ratings from the game.
Chelsea lost ground on league leaders Arsenal as a poor second half showing condemned them to a 2-0 defeat at Newcastle.
Jose Mourinho’s men came to Tyneside in confident mood after dumping Arsenal out of the Capital One Cup in midweek, but it was the under pressure Alan Pardew who came out on top. Chelsea wasted a first half of dominance, hitting the woodwork twice before Yoan Gouffran and Loic Remy struck in the second half to give Newcastle all three points.
After his mercurial display on Tuesday, Juan Mata kept his place in the team while rested regulars at the Emirates such as Oscar and Eden Hazard returned to the starting XI. Chelsea started brightly, with wave after wave of attack unsettling the home side and they nearly took the lead inside 13 minutes. John Terry’s header from a Mata corner struck the crossbar as did Branislav Ivanovic’s volley from the same move.
Terry went close again with a header that needed on the line intervention from Davide Santon, but their inability to make possession count only encouraged Newcastle in the second half. The Magpies were much improved after the break and Goufrann headed his side into the lead on 68 minutes from a deep Yohan Cabaye free-kick.
Both teams had chances before the end, Chelsea going close from Willian before substitute Samuel Eto’o’s follow up was blocked by Mathieu Debuchy. But Newcastle made safe the three points with a minute remaining when Remy finished coolly after good work from Vurnon Anita.
The loss ensures Chelsea have taken only five points from their opening five away matches this season; their worst such return since 2000-01.
Cech- 6- cannot be blamed for the goals conceded. Made some good saves in the second half to keep his side level before Gouffran’s header.
Cole- 5- had a torrid time up against Moussa Sissoko, especially in the second half.
Terry- 7- one of few Chelsea players to leave the pitch with any credit for his performance. His two headed efforts ended up being Chelsea’s only significant attempts on goal. That says more about those in front of him.
Luiz- 5- looked comfortable in possession but his lackadaisical approach saw him fail to win 50-50’s. Looks more and more a liability at centre-half.
Ivanovic- 7- like Terry, the Serb was amazingly one of the Blue’s best attacking threats. Always eager to get forward and defended well.
Lampard- 5- these inept and dull performances are becoming more and more common place for Lampard. Maybe a period out of the team would help him reassess his form.
Ramires- 6- wasn’t quite himself today. Started brightly and helped drive Chelsea forward but failed to make his presence felt in the second half.
Mata- 6- a positive start after taking his chance to shine in mid-week, but wasn’t his creative self.
Oscar- 7- one of Chelsea’s consistent performers on a windy afternoon at St James’ Park. Sadly the others around him were having the day off in the second half.
Hazard- 6- like a few of his team mates, the Belgian enjoyed a sparkling start but faded in the second half. Sadly the spark of inspiration that the winger is capable of was missing when his side really needed it.
Torres- 6- worked hard but had next to no chances, which was perhaps more a reflection on those team mates who were meant to be supplying him.
Schurrle- 6- had a decent chance after coming on for Lampard.
Willian- 7- the Brazilian had an excellent chance to equalise but Tim Krul saved superbly.
Eto’o- 6- took up some good positions and had a good chance blocked by Debuchy.
Man of the Match- Terry- seems strange to award this to a defender in a defeat, but Terry led by example when others around him were struggling. Also had two of Chelsea’s best goal-scoring opportunities.
What went wrong for the Blues at St James’ Park? Chelsea appear to have struggled away from home this season- what’s the problem? Is Mourinho changing his team too much and too often? Do you think he and the players had one eye on their Champions League clash against Schalke on Wednesday? Where do you think David Luiz’s best position is?…please leave your comments below…
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