Chelsea beat 3-2 Leeds as Jorginho scores 94th minute penalty

Chelsea 3-2 Leeds: Jorginho scores 94th minute penalty as Blues come from behind to win at home in the Premier League for the first time in SIX weeks

  • Jorginho scored two second half penalties as Chelsea beat Leeds 
  • Blues trailed after Raphinha’s first half penalty, before Mason Mount equalised
  • Joe Gelhardt looked to have saved a point for Leeds with late goal
  • The win is Chelsea’s first at home in the Premier League since October 23 
  • Blues remained third in the table, two points behind league leaders Man City

Old enmities don’t easily die. The embers of a historic grudge can quickly fire up into life. 

And a 51-year-old feud between these clubs was given fresh life in a feisty, tetchy encounter, which ultimately saw Chelsea come out on top against an injured-ravaged Leeds.

Chelsea had steadied themselves after their recent wobble in form. Yet in the heat of the encounter, as Junior Firpo and Kai Havertz clashed at the final whistle, prompting almost all 22 players to rush to join in a mass shoving match, which saw Antonio Rudiger held back as Illan Meslier gestured at him to be quiet, it seemed the bragging rights were more important than the three points.

Jorginho converted a 94th minute penalty as Chelsea beat Leeds 3-2 at Stamford Bridge

The spirit of Ron Harris and Billy Bremner seemed to infuse players born decades after those brutal 1970s encounters entered domestic football folklore. 

Footballers from continents and countries which would have seemed exotic and out-of-reach back in the day in the Football League Division One, seemed to have inherited the ancient hostility.

A game which had seen Mason Mount, Marcos Alonso and Cesar Azpilcueta all either gesture to or celebrate in front of the Leeds fans while Raphina did the same, performing a samba in front of The Shed after scoring his penalty, wasn’t short of controversy and excitement.

The intensity of occasion seemed to be inflamed as Leeds fans goaded Alonso with a distasteful chant about the fatal car accident in which he was involved ten years ago. Unsurprisingly, that cut through. 

Antonio Rudiger (middle) was at the centre of a scuffle after the final whistle 

Players from both sides were involved as Rudiger and Junior Firpo (right) argued

When Alonso provided that decisive cross, to allow Mount to score an equaliser, he was directly in front of the Leeds fans and he turned to celebrate there, face to face with his tormentors, punching the air. 

Even the angelic-looking Mount ran cross to place his finger to his lips to the Leeds fans. Later, as Cesar Azpilicueta was subbed and walk off in front of the Leeds fans, he made a gesture, which prompted missiles to which the Spaniard responded with kisses.

Inbetween all that, we had three controversial penalties, five goals, including a spectacular strike from teenager Joe Gelhardt with his first touch of the ball and that steadying of the ship from Chelsea.

Yet how they were made to fight for the points. First half, Chelsea were struggling. Marcelo Bielsa’s defence was robust and all Tuchel had was Reece James free kicks, earned from the succession of fouls Leeds were committing. 

Raphinha put the visitors ahead in the first half with a well-taken penalty

The Brazilian has now scores seven Premier League goals in 14 appearances this season

Crucially, Chelsea’s wing backs were nullified by man-to-man marking from Jack Harrison on the left and Jamie Shackleton on the right. Neither Alonso nor James could get in the game. Timo Werner’s pace was rendered obsolete by a deeper line and Mount couldn’t get on the ball to create anything for Kai Havertz.

Bielsa, with his branded and cushioned bucket on which to sit, had the better of the intellectual joust between two of the game’s key thinkers. They took the lead when Alonso injudiciously slid in on Dan James, who threaded the ball between his legs before being taken out by the wing back. 

Raphinha took the penalty, scored and then performed that samba for The Shed.

Mason Mount equalised as he scored for a third straight Premier League game

Before Jorginho converted his first penalty of the afternoon to put the Blues 2-1 up

The Italian has scored four Premier League goals this season, all of them from the penalty spot

Having coped with Chelsea so well, Bielsa would have been incandescent at the manner in which Leeds conceded the equaliser. Goalkeeper Illan Meslier tried a chipped ball out from the back which left Stuart Dallas exposed to an onrushing Alsono. 

As Dallas controlled the ball and turned, he had no chance, the wing back already on him to steal the ball. Alonso then fed Werner who returned the pass to Alonso, but now heading for the byline. 

He pulled the ball back for Mount, who swept it in from inside the area. Leeds’ defensive positioning, so meticulous up to that point, was all awry, unable to cope with a such a swift turnover of possession.

Joe Gelhardt looked to have rescued a late point for Leeds with an 83rd minute equaliser

Tension broken, Chelsea looked more themselves, Jorginho suddenly finding Havertz for the first time in a central area with a prodded through ball, requiring a fine smothered save from Meslier. 

The dynamic of the game changed. Chelsea approached the second half more confidently, though Leeds’ defiance held until Raphinha, back to help out defensively at a corner, decided to make the rashest of challenges, sliding through scissor-legged as he wiped out Rudiger in the penalty area. 

True, he did play the ball but it seemed an incidental accident as he sliced through the player. It took VAR to overturn Chris Kavanagh’s initial refusal to award the penalty. Jorginho stepped up, performed his trademark skippy run up and drove the penalty into the top left corner for 2-1.

The Blues remained third in the Premier League, two points adrift of Manchester City

Yet Leeds hit back when 19-year-old Joe Gelhardt, plucked from the Wigan academy when the club was in administration, came on. Attacking quickly, Mateusz Klich played in Tyler Roberts, who crossed for Gelhardt. Belying his years, he finished magnificently from just inside the box for 2-2 with his first touch of the ball.

And then came the final twist. Chelsea were throwing many forward but there was little danger in injury time when Rudiger received the ball in the box. Yet Klich clumsily kicked him, missing the ball. 

It was soft but, despite their hopes, it was never going be overturned by VAR. Jorginho provided the denouement, sending his penalty kick in the opposite corner to his previous penalty and with a confident strike for 3-2.

Share this article

Source: Read Full Article