Wembley welcomes the Premier League
Written By: Robert Halter
Tottenham Hotspur staged the first Premier League fixture at Wembley stadium as Chelsea were the visitors on Sunday, August 20. In the fourth minute from a ball over by Cesar Azpilicueta, it found an unmarked Alvaro Morata, but he miss directed his header wide to the right with a clear sight of goal. The Lilywhites exerted pressure when Dele Alli was fouled by David Luiz, and a short free kick from Christian Eriksen went to Eric Dier, whose delivery forced Tiemoue Bakayoko, to put the ball out of play by ballooning a header over. In the ninth minute, Thibaut Courtois, spilled a first time strike by Harry Kane, who had collected a pass from Victor Wanyama. Two minutes later, from an assist by Ben Davies, a lofted cross from Kane, went over the target range. On thirteen minutes, a ball over from Dier was missed completely by Andreas Christensen, and Alli poached to whip his strike over the upright. In the eighteenth minute, after Morata was dispossessed by Kieran Trippier, a flying dipping blast from Mousa Dembele, was tipped over from the faintest of touches by Courtois. But after Alli’s stray foot pulled down Luiz in the twenty third minute, a curling free kick from Marcos Alonso, bent over the Spurs wall and into the top right corner to give Chelsea the lead. After Davies was appended by Moses, a free kick on the left from Eriksen, had to be headed out of play from Bakayoko. Then from a corner by Davies, a header was put wide to the right by Toby Alderweireld, in a central position. In the twenty ninth minute, Spurs went close as Kane was put through by Dier, and Courtois pulled off a close range save to keep out Kane’s right footed shot. In the next minute, from an Alli pass, Kane drilled a low shot past the left post. On thirty eight minutes, after Luiz pulled Eriksen’s shirt, from the resulting free kick by Eriksen, the ball flew past a packed Blues area, and missed the outstretched leg of Kane and the stationary Dier, at the far post. In the forty first minute, a ball from Alli, broke through to Kane on the left, who drilled a low strike against the bottom right post, then following a passage of play, a soft strike by Wanyama went directly at Courtois. Before the half time break, Kane put the ball out to Davies, whose fierce long range curling strike required Courtois to leap over to his left and turn the strike away. Kane then had a header saved by Courtois following a cross by Eriksen as the ball was targeted towards the top right corner. Spurs were the quickest out of the blocks for the second half, as Kane put Eriksen through on goal, but the ball deflected off Azpilicueta for a corner, which Davies put over and Kane headed the ball into the back of Luiz from close range before Luiz turned the ball away. Spurs later made the first change of Dier with Heung-Min Son. In the seventieth minute, a burst of pace from Willian inside his own half, set Morata free but Jan Vertonghen made a last ditch block to avert the danger. A minute later, Willian was again the creator as Victor Moses drove into the box and fired over. But on seventy three minutes, Morata played the ball across to Willian, who struck a low drive against the foot of the left post. The Blues later changed Willian with Pedro and Morata with Michy Batshuayi before Spurs took off Davies for Moussa Sissoko. But after Alli was brought down from Bakayoko in the eighty first minute, a free kick from Eriksen on the left was headed into his own net by Batshuayi to bring the scores back to level pegging. Although Chelsea restored their lead in the eighty eighth minute, when Luiz won the ball off Wanyama and Pedro slid the ball through to Alonso on the left, who fired his shot underneath Hugo Lloris, who fumbled in his attempt to make a save, as the ball went into the bottom right corner. Near the end, Trippier was fouled by Pedro and was unable to continue as Vincent Janssen made a brief appearance but it was the Blues who secured all three points with a 2-1 victory to inflict a home defeat for Spurs at their new accommodation in Wembley stadium during a competitive London derby.