Chelsea Player Ratings vs Valencia Champions League Matchday 5

Written By Uttiyo Sarkar on November 27, 2019

Chelsea visited Valencia in the UEFA Champions League looking to take a step closer into qualifying for the knockout stages. Frank Lampard’s side barely did so, playing out an action-packed 2-2 draw. They dominated the early stages before Valencia started growing into the game and handed them a lifeline when Maxi Gomez missed from an open net in the 18th minute.

Both sides pegged forward for the opener, but it was Valencia who got it when Carlos Soler scored from close range in the 40th minute. Chelsea, however, came up with an immediate response with Mateo Kovacic scoring his first goal for the club with a precise finish from outside the area. 

The Blues came out firing in the second half and after a long VAR check, Christian Pulisic’s tap-in from close was awarded to give them the lead in the 50th minute. Valencia were then awarded a penalty in the 64th minute, but Dani Parejo’s attempt was expertly saved by Kepa Arrizabalaga to retain his side’s lead. 

The hosts kept pegging on and found their equalizer through an amazing goal from Daniel Wass from the right-wing to set up a dramatic finish.Valencia threw the kitchen sink in the end and Rodrigo missed a simple tap-in in added-time to end the game with the sides sharing the points. Chelsea will take it!

Chelsea Player Ratings

Manager

Frank Lampard (5.5)-

Lampard was too ambitious with trying to dominate Valencia and played right into their hands at times. His tendency to keep his side pegging forward almost caused disaster with the hosts almost getting a late winner. However, Chelsea played some slick attacking football and his youngsters impressed again. Needs to get his side’s defensive shape sorted out to survive in this competition. 

Goalkeeper

Kepa Arrizabalaga (5.5) –

Extremely lucky to see Gomez scuff his early chance, but held onto his tame header minutes later. Made a stunning stop to deny Maxi from close in the 30th minute. He should’ve saved Soler’s goal, which scraped past his hands into the net. Then he unnecessarily came rushing out of his goal in the 56th landing himself in trouble, but Rodrigo’s chipped attempt went just over.

After having a shoddy game, he redeems himself with an insane penalty save at the 64th! Then he grew cocky and allowed Wass’ attempted cross to go over him, only to see it go inside his net. A very mixed performance. 

Defenders

Reece James (6.0) –

The young right-back has been menacing with his crosses, putting in an inch-perfect one to lay up Willian who horribly scuffed his header in the 2nd minute. James whipped in a number of inviting crosses which weren’t capitalized. Remained defensively solid too. But he allowed too many moves through his side late on. 

Andreas Christensen (5.0) –

Coming off a long injury period, Christensen showed little signs of weariness as he outpaced Maxi Gomez to recover possession early on. Lost track of his man on many occasions and almost exposed his side in the 56th with a botched clearance. Couldn’t clear Gaya’s cross in added time, but saw it scuffed as well. Christensen couldn’t do anything about Valencia’s attacking onslaught, looking very nervous. Still has lots to do to take Fikayo Tomori’s place. 

Kurt Zouma (6.0) –

Zouma looks to be confident as ever in defence. But he completely lost his positioning allowing Rodrigo to sail through and play through to Maxi, who luckily missed from open range. Couldn’t do much to stop Rodrigo’s cross leading to the goal. Despite some defensive lapses, Zouma made himself big assisting Pulisic’s goal with a dominant header. 

Cesar Azpilicueta (5.5) –

Captain Azpilicueta looks tenacious heading forward despite playing on the opposite side of his natural role. But he misread Parrejo’s movement leading to Gomez’s chance at the half-hour mark. Badly caught napping out of his position leading to the opening goal. Got booked in the 55th for a poor challenge. He came his own after moving into a centre-back role, making some important late challenges to ease the tension. 

Midfielders

Jorginho (4.5) –

Despite being that bit vulnerable to swift-breaks, Jorginho’s distribution has been classy as ever. Put in an amazing long-ball to almost gift Pulisic a goal in the 11th minute. Rodrigo’s cross went over him leading to the opener. He also gave away the penalty with a sloppy challenge on Jose Gaya inside the box. Struggled against Valencia’s intensity and substituted after being booked. 

Mateo Kovacic (7.0) –

The shackles are off Kovacic today, allowing him to be more influential in churning together attacking moves. He kept pegging forward and FINALLY gets his first Chelsea goal with a stunning curler into the net. Almost got his 2nd before the break, but his powerful attempt was saved well. Oozed with confidence and showcased impeccable flair carrying the ball forward. 

N’Golo Kante (6.5) –

After his heroics at City, Kante looks industrious as ever winning back the ball man times inside the first half-hour. Sneaked into some scoring positions in the first half as well, but the best he came was in the 36th minute when his shot from range skied over. Then made a fancy lick two minutes later for Abraham to test Jasper Cilessen. Looked in two minds in the second-half, making some frustrated fouls and getting booked. His work-rate, however,  is unquestioned. 

Forwards

Willian (5.0) –

Willian had a golden opportunity to score immediately after kick-off, but botched an easy header over the bar. Apart from a couple of decent crosses, he was rather ineffective going forward. Bit of a dull showing. 

Tammy Abraham (6.0) – 

Abraham looks hungry as ever in the final third, with his hold-up play in the early minutes being especially impressive. He kept hounding for a goal and almost got it in the 38th minute, when his timely tap forced an incredible save from Cilessen. His night, unfortunately, ended early when he went off injured after landing badly during a duel. 

Christian Pulisic (7.5) –

Pulisic is already tormenting Valencia’s defenders with his swift movement and ability to dance past defenders at will. Moved forward with confidence and almost set-up Kovacic’s 2nd with a delightful pass in the 44th minute. His hunger paid off in the 50th minute when he smartly finished from close to get another CL goal.

Almost added another at the hour-mark, but his strike wasn’t clean enough. Chelsea’s best attacker once again. Left defenders in tatters with his unpredictability.

Substitutions

Michy Batshuayi (5.5) –

Replacing the injured Abraham, he failed to consolidate that centre-forward role. The only shot he got was late in the game, which deflected off a defender before being spectacularly saved by Cilessen. 

Emerson (5.5) –

Made a few surging forward runs, but wasn’t able to close in Wass quick enough to deny his strike. 

Mason Mount (6.0) –

Mount was precise with his set-pieces, but failed to deliver the winner. 

MAN OF THE MATCH

Pulisic was irresistible once again gliding past defenders and showcasing delightful skill going forward. Scored a poacher’s finish to effectively win Chelsea the point. Definitely the MOTM. 

Uttiyo Sarkar Avatar
Written by
Uttiyo Sarkar

An unbiased Manchester United die-hard. Lover of the beautiful game. Addicted to the Premier League and beyond. Hopeful writer in the search for the greater good.

View all posts by Uttiyo Sarkar
Privacy Policy