Lampard leads Chelsea in Foxes Draw
Written By: Robert Halter
Frank Lampard began his first home game as Chelsea manager while in the opposing Leicester City dug out was Brendan Rogers, who had worked at the Blues when Lampard was there as a player. The Blues released the handbrakes immediately when from Cesar Azpilicueta’s cross on the right and chest down by Olivier Giroud, the ball was struck on the volley from Pedro, into the outside netting, after just forty eight seconds. In the second minute from Jorginho’s pass and knock on by Giroud, the Foxes keeper, Kasper Schmeichel, was called into action with a brave body block to keep out first Mason Mount and then the follow up shot by Christian Pulisic. From the resulting corner by Mount, a near post header by Pulisic was turned away by Leicester’s Ricardo Pereira, from the six yard box, to avert the danger. But the Blues struck first in the seventh minute, as Schmeichel rolled the ball out to Jonny Evans, whose lay off went to Wilfred Ndidi, who got caught in possession by Mount, as he moved into the area before ramming the ball past a stationary Schmeichel, into the centre of the goal. In the twenty first minute, from Pedro’s delicate assist, Azpilicueta’s cross was headed down by Mount into the reaches of Schmeichel. Five minutes later, a low cross by Emerson was flicked back off the heels of Giroud, and an unmarked N’Golo Kante drove the ball against Christian Fuchs, as the ball deflected wide of the near left post. On the half hour mark, a lazy back pass by Kurt Zouma caught Kepa Arrizabalaga by surprise, who was close to losing the ball to Jamie Vardy, before tackling him and deflecting the ball out to safety. Jorginho got the first booking for a rash challenge on Youri Tielemans, but the free kick by James Maddion, flew past Ndidi at the far post, and out of play. In the fiftieth minute, a threaded pass by Ayoze Perez, found Maddison on the left, who rounded Arrizabalaga, but as he tried to find Tielemans, an important clearance was made by Mount, to diffuse the situation. In the following five minutes, there was a delay in the match as Pedro pulled up injured, while Maddison was waiting to take a corner, before play resumed. The corner was only half cleared, and a cross was whipped in by Hamza Choudhury, which cannoned off Perez, before Arrizabalaga leaped to his left and made the save. The Foxes pressed again, as Fuchs found Maddison, who turned past Andreas Christensen, before putting in a dangerous cross on the left past the face of the goal. The Blues first substitution saw Tammy Abraham replace Giroud. On sixty six minutes, a surging run by Fuchs, ended with the ball striking Azpilicueta, and going onto the outside netting of the crossbar, but from the resulting corner by Maddison, a bullet header from Ndidi, in the centre of the box, crashed into the top right corner, to bring the Foxes back to level pegging. The Blues soon made a double change of Matteo Kovacic for Jorginho and Willian for Pulisic, before Leicester brought on Dennis Praet for Choudhury. In the seventy third minute, from Fuch’s cross and link up play by Perez, the ball was blasted over by Maddison. The Chelsea response was a delivery by Pedro which went over the head of Abraham, in the middle of the box. On seventy seven minutes, from Maddison’s through ball on the left, Vardy drilled the ball narrowly past the far right post. Chelsea responded as Mount found Willian on the left, who struck the ball into the side netting. Marc Albrighton soon took over from Perez as the Foxes made a second change. In the eighty ninth minute, Maddison combined with Albrighton, before a fierce rising effort from Tielemans, was parried away by the firm hands of Arrizabalaga. At the end, from Tielemans headed pass, Arrizabalaga ran out of goal, to stick a leg out and nullify the threat of Albrighton, to rescue a point for Chelsea as the match ended in a 1-1 draw with Leicester City during the middle part of August.