Chelsea will travel to Spain in around three weeks time knowing they need a result, after drawing 1-1 with Barcelona at Stamford Bridge. Willian opened the scoring for the Blues just after the hour mark, before Lionel Messi scored his first ever goal against Chelsea to give Barcelona a precious away goal. Here’s who impressed as Chelsea drew with Barcelona last night:
3. Cesar Azpilicueta
Captaining the side in Gary Cahill’s absence against a side like Barcelona, last night was never going to be easy for the Chelsea back three. They needed a leader, and the Spaniard was exactly that. He didn’t put a foot wrong for the entire 90 minutes, and held his own against the likes of Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez. No doubt he will be disappointed about the equaliser, but a great performance from Azpilicueta.
2. N’Golo Kante
The back three had a tough time up against Messi and Suarez, Kante’s job in the midfield wasn’t much easier. The Spanish side’s starting XI boasted Sergi Busquets, Ivan Rakitic, and Andres Iniesta in their midfield. But the Frenchman performed admirably, breaking up possession and making vital interceptions. He was also a willing runner, and helped to start a number of Chelsea counter attacks.
Who else would it have been? The Brazilian was outstanding from start to finish, and could’ve had a hat-trick if it wasn’t for the thickness of the woodwork. Willian hit both posts in the first half for Chelsea, before finally netting at the third time of asking. He bled for the team too. Literally. After a clash with a Barcelona player earlier in the game, he was left with a cut lip which required attention. A brilliant performance from the Brazilian, hopefully we see more of it in the second leg away at the Nou Camp next month.