Chelsea had the perfect response to Saturday’s shock defeat against Crystal Palace by securing a 2-1 home win over Manchester City. Here’s how we rated the Blues players in the victory at Stamford Bridge.
Thibaut Courtois: 5
His horrendous mistake in the first half gifted City an equaliser and threatened to destabilise what had been a decent start. But Courtois made amends with a fine save soon after and an excellent block from Sergio Aguero in stoppage time.
Kurt Zouma: 6
The towering Frenchman came in for his first Premier League start of the season and was steady, but was replaced at the interval as Chelsea reorganised.
David Luiz: 7
Luiz was guilty of needlessly committing himself on a couple of occasions early on, but played with far greater discipline and composure as the match wore on.
Gary Cahill: 8
Had a fine game at the heart of the defence, particularly in the second half with Chelsea sitting deep and protecting their lead. He made a couple of trademark blocks and interceptions and led by example.
Cesar Azpilicueta: 7
He switched seamlessly to right wing-back and then back to playing as one of the three centre-backs with the minimum of fuss.
N’Golo Kante: 7
Kante was as industrious and busy as ever and just about managed to keep his side competitive in the midfield as City threatened to overload the central areas and Chelsea began to surrender possession.
Cesc Fabregas: 6
Struggled to screen his centre-backs after the City equaliser and was pushed further forward by Antonio Conte at the interval. He looked far more comfortable, although he did not see much of the ball with Chelsea looking to defend their lead.
Marcos Alonso: 6
Not the easiest evening for Alonso against the pace of Jesus Navas, but his technical ability and calmness on the ball still shone through.
Started in his preferred attacking role on the right, but was switched to right-back following the half-time reshuffle. Pedro answered those who criticised him following the loss to Palace with a surprisingly solid performance at the back, while also retaining a threat in the final third.
Diego Costa: 6
Another frustrating evening for the striker, who didn’t have a meaningful attempt on goal. Vincent Kompany’s return ensured he had a tougher evening than would have otherwise been the case, but his commitment and work-rate remained impressive.
Eden Hazard: 8
Chelsea’s matchwinner was very near his best, retaining possession, showing strength and trickery and providing an outlet with the team under pressure. But his finishing was the least impressive part of his display. His early strike, albeit well hit, only found the net thanks to a telling deflection and the second goal was also fortunate, scoring with a slightly casual follow-up after his weak penalty was saved. And he missed a glorious chance to seal the win when he shot over.
Nemanja Matic: 6
Provided much more defensive stability after coming on at the interval but was guilty of some slack marking from set-pieces, which could have proved costly – notably when he lost John Stones in time added on at the end.
Brought energy and helped relieve pressure in the final 10 minutes.