Title dreams over? Three things we learned as Chelsea are held by Brighton at Stamford Bridge


Title dreams over? Three things we learned as Chelsea are held by Brighton at Stamford BridgeTitle dreams over? Three things we learned as Chelsea are held by Brighton at Stamford Bridge

Chelsea fail Brighton test

Chelsea handed further initiative to Manchester City, just 24 hours after Liverpool did the same, as they were held to a 1-1 draw with Brighton at Stamford Bridge.

Romelu Lukaku nodded in what looked to be the winner midway through the first half, as Chelsea rode their luck, only for Danny Welbeck to head home a stoppage time equaliser, and leave the Blues likely 8 points off Manchester City, who are currently 1-0 up against Brentford.

Here are 4 things 101 picked out from the clash.

1. Chelsea facing defensive crisis

After just recovering from a midfield crisis, Chelsea and Thomas Tuchel are now facing one in defence.

Thiago Silva was forced to sit out of the clash through injury, while Ben Chilwell has been ruled out for the season following an ACL injury suffered against Juventus in the Champions League, which led to Tuchel fielding Reece James at left-wing-back and Christian Pulisic on the right of his defence.

And, then it got worse.

Andreas Christensen went down midway through the first half, and while he could continue until half time, Reece James could not.

The Englishman was forced off in the first half with a hamstring injury, while Christensen was replaced by Chalobah at the interval, raising fitness concerns over both.

This leaves the Blues very short in defence, with the pair joining Silva and Chiwell on the sidelines, leaving Tuchel with only one recognised wing-back and four recognised centre halves.

They desperately need to invest come the January window.

2. Lukaku back in form

For the first time since September, Romelu Lukaku netted in back to back games for Tuchel, and in the process netted his first goal at home since his return to Stamford Bridge.

A mixture of injury and lack of form has seen Lukaku struggle since he returned to Chelsea in the summer for a mammoth 97 million pound transfer fee, and without his goals the Blues have struggled in recent times, with their previously formidable defence showing signs of cracking. In this scenario, scoring is even more important than before.

Chelsea fans will be desperately hoping that this form continues for Lukaku, as they will need his goals as they look to close the gap on Manchester City, and bring the title back to west London after its spell in the north.

The million-dollar question is, will it?

3. Have Chelsea blown their title dreams?

It was all going so well for the Blues.

Top of the league just weeks ago, they have endured a poor run of form that continued this evening, even despite putting out a near full-strength side.

Worse still, they looked tired and devoid of ideas, creating only one of two chances in front of a restless home crowd that saw their side outplayed by Brighton.

Now only a point ahead of Liverpool and 8 points behind Manchester City, the Blues have both sides to come in their next fixtures, and will need to take 6 points from 6 to keep any fading hopes of a Premier League title alive.

Read more:

Chelsea fans point to one man as the key influence in second half against Brighton

Revealed: The injury that forced Chelsea star off in the first half of Brighton clash


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Chelsea vs Liverpool Result/Both teams score Yes No
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Liverpool 7/2
Draw 7/2 11/1

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Manchester City 19 38 47
2 Liverpool FC 19 34 41
3 Chelsea FC 19 29 41
4 Arsenal FC 19 9 35
5 West Ham United 19 9 31
6 Tottenham Hotspur 17 2 30
7 Manchester United 17 2 28
8 Wolverhampton Wanderers 18 -1 25
9 Leicester City 18 -2 25
10 Crystal Palace 19 0 23
11 Brighton & Hove Albion 17 -1 23
12 Aston Villa 18 -4 22
13 Southampton FC 19 -9 21
14 Brentford FC 17 -3 20
15 Everton FC 17 -8 19
16 Leeds United 18 -18 16
17 Watford FC 17 -13 13
18 Burnley FC 15 -7 11
19 Newcastle United 19 -23 11
20 Norwich City 19 -34 10
Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 15
Jota, Diogo Liverpool FC 10
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City 9
Dennis, Emmanuel Watford FC 8
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur 8
Smith-Rowe, Emile Arsenal FC 8
Raphinha Leeds United 8
Antonio, Michail West Ham United 7
Mount, Mason Chelsea FC 7
Ronaldo, Cristiano Manchester United 7
Sterling, Raheem Manchester City 7
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 7
Silva, Bernardo Manchester City 7
Maupay, Neal Brighton & Hove Albion 7
Gallagher, Conor Crystal Palace 6
Jorginho Chelsea FC 6
Wilson, Callum Newcastle United 6
Mahrez, Riyad Manchester City 5
Saka, Bukayo Arsenal FC 5
King, Joshua Watford FC 5



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