Chelsea’s 3-0 defeat of Arsenal on Saturday in Beijing was an impressive start to their tour of the Far East and acted as slight revenge for the FA Cup final result in May. A couple of players impressed and one certainly was out to prove a point to Antonio Conte and to a certain Spanish striker.
Thibaut Courtois – 6
The Belgian shot-stopper was rarely threatened during his first half stint in goal and was assured in possession. He made a smart save to deny Alexandre Lacazette but was otherwise untroubled.
Cesar Azpilicueta – 6
Consistent and confident in possession and, as always, a reliable defender when it came to shutting out the threat of Alex Iwobi and Alexandre Lacazette.
David Luiz – 6.5
Marshalled Lacazette extremely well, limiting the Frenchman to just a few touches and very little chances to score. Contributed to the attack well at times but dealing with Lacazette was main job.
Gary Cahill – 6
Didn’t allow Mesut Ozil any space to play and was a threat in the opposition box as well as being a stalwart in his own area. Was late on in the second half along with Azpilicueta and Luiz.
Victor Moses – 6.5
Was a persistent thorn in Arsenal’s left side as youngster, Conor Brammal, found it hard to defend against him or get past him. Was very involved in attacks during the first half and produced some decent crosses.
Cesc Fabregas – 7
Completely controlled the game in the first half, spraying the ball left, right and centre with stunning accuracy. Faded slightly in the second half with the introduction of Granit Xhaka and Francis Coquelin but his defensive work should not go unnoticed.
N’Golo Kante – 6.5
His work off the ball allowed Fabregas to dictate the tempo of the match and, as usual, he covered every blade of grass during his spell on the pitch. Was involved in the build up to Batshuayi’s disallowed goal with a neat pass back to the corner taker and went on to get an assist for Batshuayi’s first goal.
Marcos Alonso – 6.5
Had a quiet first half by his standards and looked in a little discomfort when being confronted by a quicker Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain but produced a moment of magic after the break. He ran down the left-hand side and cut inside, leaving Oxlade-Chamberlain on his backside, and picked out Michy Batshuayi who scored from the edge of the area.
Willian – 8
Ran the show in the first half with many bursts forwards with the ball. Broke the deadlock in the 40th minute with a typical goal – he cut inside on his right foot and bent the ball into the far corner, off the post. Looked bright and sharp throughout and caused the Arsenal defence all sorts of problems.
Pedro – 6.5
Lively on the ball during the first half and looked like creating a chance or scoring with every contribution. Was taken off with concussion in the first half after a nasty clash with the Arsenal keeper, David Ospina, where they collided when Ospina came out to punch the ball and ultimately ended up punching Pedro in the face.
Michy Batshuayi – 9 – Man of the Match
Batshuayi sent a warning shot to new arrival, Alvaro Morata, with an impressive performance where he bagged 2 goals and claimed an assist – having a hand in each Chelsea goal. His first goal was a smart turn and finish on his weaker foot after having a perfectly valid goal chalked off for offside. His second was a brilliant strike on the edge of the area which flew past Ospina. A smart turn on Per Mertesacker set-up Willian’s goal before he struck two of his own.
Jeremie Boga – 7.5
Boga came on for Pedro in the first half and stunned Chelsea fans with his flamboyant and intricate dribbling. His final product could be improved but he often drifted past Arsenal players like they weren’t even there and dazzled defenders with his close control. The Frenchman certainly didn’t look out of place and Chelsea fans will hope to see him involved in Conte’s Premier League plans.
Willy Caballero – 6
Was busier than Courtois was in the first half but he was still confident on the ball and rarely looked like conceding. Made a few saves but nothing spectacular from the new signing.
Lewis Baker – 6.5
Baker, who has spent the last 2 seasons on loan at Vitesse, looks ready-made for the first team and was impressive and composed when given the opportunity on the pitch with 20 minutes to go. His passing accuracy was a major strength and he was denied by Gunners keeper, Emiliano Martinez, from a free kick late on.
Loic Remy – 5.5
Wasn’t really involved in many attacks after replacing Batshuayi and was not nearly as much of a threat as the Belgian had been.
Fikayo Tomori – 6
Replaced Victor Moses at right back and did not look out of place in the Chelsea side. Was played in brilliantly by Fabregas but his shot was stopped by Martinez.
Kenedy – 5
His brief cameo was blighted by poor decision making which included being responsible for a 3-on-1 opportunity not being taken and a couple of backheels did not come off as he’d hoped. Not an impressive performance from the Brazilian.
Other subs: Tomas Kalas, Mario Pasalic, Jake Clarke-Salter, Andreas Christensen and Kyle Scott all played just 10 minutes.