Valencia picked up a smash-and-grab 1- win at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday evening, toppling ​Chelsea thanks to Rodrigo’s second-half purpose. 

Ross Barkley wasted a fantastic chance to draw the hosts level late on, striking a VAR-awarded penalty more than the crossbar immediately after appearing to relieve frequent penalty takers Jorginho and Willian of their spot-kick duties – even though manager Frank Lampard later confirmed he is the penalty taker when he’s on the field.

Ross Barkley

Each sides have been straightforward on the eye in he very first half, even though each lacked any true penetration – the very first true work of note coming on the stroke of half-time as Willian tested Jasper Cillessen in the guests purpose.

The Blues enhanced immediately after the break, with Marcos Alonso going close from a totally free-kick, but have been shellshocked by a sucker punch from Rodrigo – who converted 1 of Valencia’s two shots on target from Dani Parejo’s whipped totally free-kick.

Fikayo Tomori’s header onto an unwitting Daniel Wass’ arm, by way of VAR critique, gave Chelsea a likelihood to grab a share of the spoils, but it wasn’t to be as Barkley blazed woefully more than the best.

Here’s 90min’s breakdown of the game under.


​Key Speaking Point

It may well have been his ​Champions League managerial debut, but Frank Lampard not only kept his faith in youth, he opted to use the 3 at the back program that was so impressive in the five-two demolition of Wolves. 

The formation suited Chelsea on a evening when Fikayo Tomori created his debut and an out-of-sorts Kurt Zouma replaced the injured Antonio Rudiger. Wing backs Cesar Azpilicueta and Marcos Alonso dropped into a 5 with Valencia in possession, defending the centre backs, and played higher and wide when Chelsea gained possession. 

It was reminiscent of Antonio Conte’s title-winning side at instances, just without having the cutting edge. 

Frank Lampard

Recognising the need to have for alter, Olivier Giroud replaced Zouma as the Blues reverted to a back 4. But just a minute later, Valencia had taken the lead in what can most likely be classed as an unlucky coincidence.

Each Alonso and Andreas Christensen squandered late probabilities as Chelsea piled on the stress, but the late penalty miss could possibly come back to haunt them.

Sadly, Mason Mount’s competitors debut ended on just 15 minutes as he failed to recover from a powerful Francis Coquelin challenge a true blow to Lampard ahead of the impending stop by of Liverpool.

Player Ratings

Beginning XIArrizabalaga (six) Zouma (six), Christensen (7), Tomori (six), Azpilicueta (7), Jorginho (six), Kovacic (7), Alonso (7), Willian (eight*), Mount (five), Abraham (six)

Substitues: Pedro (7), Giroud (five), Barkley (four)


Substantially maligned Brazilian winger Willian was Chelsea’s most constructive player on the evening, cutting inside to drive at the Valencia defence on numerous occasions. In some ways ​Willian‘s overall performance summed up Chelsea’s attacking play – as in spite of all of his endeavour, Chelsea struggled to build on a evening exactly where their attacking players basically did not click.

It could possibly have been a distinctive story had he and Jorginho not stepped aside for Barkley on penalty duties, but that is anything we’ll under no circumstances know.




Important Speaking Point

​The life of a manager is generally a lonely 1, anything Albert Celades located out the difficult way significantly less than a week into his tenure at Valencia. In a rumoured protest at the sacking of his well-known predecessor Marcelino, the Valencia players refused to attend pre-match media duties alongside him – not excellent.

Cutting a lone figure, Celades did his finest to place a brave face on points and stated that: “The reaction I’ve had has been incredibly great and I’m confident it will continue to increase. The spirit is incredibly great. (Tuesday) is the commence of the finest club competitors in Europe and that is ample motivation for the players to give their finest.”

If there is player unrest behind the scenes, there have been no indicators of it in Valencia’s overall performance. Two organised banks of 4 have been powerful at nullifying Chelsea’s attacking threat, even though they also utilized a higher press at times to protect against Chelsea creating a rhythm. Their attacking players have been tireless in their operating, as Celades’ group attempted to stretch the Blues on the counter attack. 

Player Ratings

Beginning XICillessen (7) Wass (7), Garay (7), Gabriel (7), Gayá (eight), Coquelin (six), Parejo (eight), Kondogbia (7), Cheryshev (six), Rodrigo (eight*), Gameiro (six)

Subs: Gomez (six), Lee (four), Diakhaby (four)


Smash and grab it may well have been, but goalscorer Rodrigo was the heartbeat of Valencia’s great perform and all of their finest attacking football came by means of him. 

He dropped deep to hyperlink up with his teammates, attempting to spring the offside trap and release them behind the Chelsea defence. His instinctive finish was cool and collected on a evening when he received restricted service. 

Seeking Ahead

Chelsea face away trips to Lille and Ajax in their subsequent two Champions League fixtures, so will disappointed to have dropped all 3 points right here. 

Domestically, the Blues commence 3 consecutive dwelling games by welcoming Liverpool to Stamford Bridge this Sunday. Grimsby and Brighton stick to in Carabao Cup and Premier League action, respectively.

Valencia, meanwhile, face Ajax at dwelling and Lille away in their upcoming Group H matches. Domestically, Celades has two arguably winnable dwelling games as Leganes and Getafe stop by Mestalla.