Blues blown away at Wembley
Spurs 3-1 Chelsea
Sat 24 November 2018, 19:26|Tottenham Hotspur
A magnificent all-round performance saw us power past Chelsea at Wembley Stadium on Saturday evening to end their unbeaten record and climb above them into third place in the Premier League.
From the first minute to the last, we were always in control and produced arguably our best display of the campaign so far, registering back-to-back 3-1 wins over the Blues following our success at Stamford Bridge in April.
Dele got the ball rolling, heading us in front in the eighth minute before Harry Kane doubled our advantage with a fine strike from distance, while Heung-Min Son’s magnificent solo goal on 54 minutes put us firmly in the driving seat. In truth, it could have been so many more as we spurned some glorious chances and Blues goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga made some fine saves, before Chelsea netted a late consolation through Olivier Giroud.
As you’d expect, it was frenetic stuff right from the outset and there was real intensity to our play. We made the perfect start, taking the lead after just eight minutes when Christian Eriksen whipped in a lovely free-kick wide on the right which Dele glanced with power past Arrizabalaga and into the net. And just a minute later, we worked it really well once again, Eriksen chipping over the Chelsea defence for Son who lashed over the bar. There was barely time to catch your breath before Son was in again, Arrizabalaga saving with his legs, while Chelsea had penalty claims waved away after Juan Foyth challenged Eden Hazard.
We then doubled our lead on 16 minutes when Kane picked up possession midway inside the Blues' half and, although there didn’t look like much was on, he just advanced infield and drilled right-footed low past a completely wrong-footed Arrizabalaga. We looked so dangerous on the attack, but then so did Chelsea with everything going through the in-form Hazard, except our defence was dealing far better with the Blues’ forwards then Chelsea’s were with ours.
On the half-hour, Eriksen’s cross was touched goalwards by Toby Alderweireld with Arrizabalaga saving again and from the rebound, Foyth’s scorpion-kick back-heel just evaded the far post while Son brought down Dele’s long pass with a sublime touch, ran at David Luiz and Antonio Rudiger but was just over the bar with his 20-yard drive.
At the other end, the visitors had their first shot on target on 38 minutes but Hazard’s drive was parried away by Hugo Lloris, and it was almost 3-0 on the stroke of half-time, Son meeting Eriksen’s cut-back with a sweet volley and it needed an excellent save from Arrizabalaga to prevent his side from falling further behind.
It wasn’t quite as frantic at the start of the second half as we appeared to sit in a little more and Chelsea certainly had more of the ball, almost pulling one back when Marcos Alonso’s cross fell to Willian, his effort from 12 yards nicking off a defender and flying over the bar.
Instead, it was us who grabbed the next goal – and what a goal it was! With 54 minutes on the clock, another Chelsea attack was broken up allowing Dele to send a ball down the right flank for Son to chase. He collected possession, burst away from Jorginho, skipped past David Luiz into the area and calmly curled a low left-foot shot into the bottom corner to send Wembley wild!
Quite how it wasn’t 4-0 on 67 minutes remains a mystery. A superb counter involving Eriksen, Son and Moussa Sissoko ended with the latter’s low cross to Kane on the edge of the six-yard box, but incredibly he fired over the bar.
The visitors pulled a goal back in the 85th minute when substitute Giroud headed home Cesar Azpilicueta’s cross and might have added a second through Pedro two minutes later, but we were never really in any danger and held on for a superb victory.
In our best performance of the season, there was some great football played, great goals and some great defending, but Son’s goal stands out as an absolute highlight.
Not only was it an individual strike of the highest quality but it came at a crucial time too, early after the interval, just as Chelsea were starting to exert some pressure in search of a way back into the game. A truly wonderful moment.
Mauricio Pochettino said the players did the talking with their football, leaving him only to praise them for a fine display after what was an important derby outing.
"We are so pleased and the players deserve all the credit," he said. "They were fantastic and their attitude was amazing. Now the big challenge is to be consistent and to show (that) that performance is a thing to be optimistic for the future.
"I don’t need to say too much. You don’t need to talk, just give the credit to the players. They talked on the pitch and they need to be praised for everything."
Eric Dier agreed that the performance was something to be proud of, coming off the back of some tough games where we've had to grind out the results.
"It’s a really pleasing result and performance to go with it," he told Spurs TV. "In the league this season that’s been the only criticism, that the performances haven’t really matched the results, so the feeling has been a bit strange in that sense.
"But today the performance definitely matched the result."
Reaction on Spurs TV
Spurs 3-1 Chelsea
Spurs (4-2-3-1): Lloris (c), Aurier, Foyth, Alderweireld, Davies, Dier, Sissoko, Son (Lamela 78), Dele (Winks 86), Eriksen, Kane. Substitutes (not used): Gazzaniga, Walker-Peters, Vertonghen, Lucas, Llorente.
Chelsea (4-3-3): Arrizabalaga, Azpilicueta (c), Rudiger, Luiz, Alonso, Jorginho, Kante, Kovacic (Barkley 58), Willian (Giroud 76), Morata (Pedro 58), Hazard. Substitutes (not used): Caballero, Zappacosta, Christensen, Fabregas.
Goals: Spurs – Dele 8, Kane 16, Son 54; Chelsea – Giroud 85.
Yellow cards: Chelsea – Rudiger, Hazard, Jorginho.
Referee: Martin Atkinson.
Venue: Wembley Stadium.
Weather: Light cloud, chilly, eight degrees.