Chelsea vs Leeds: Post-match Reactions

Relief. That’s the feeling everyone felt at that end of that epic and dramatic encounter against our old rivals, Leeds United. The past few games have not boded well for the Blues hence why this result means so much. Chelsea’s heavy load of injuries has significantly hampered our performance on the pitch. Nevertheless, the countless individual mistakes can’t be excused and therefore criticism should be just. Tonight was no different. Several key mistakes including a lazy tackle by Marcos Alonso gave Leeds the opening goal inside 30 minutes. Late in the half, Mason Mount was able to equalize. A back and forth match-up between two well-acquainted foes gave fans their money’s worth. Chelsea fans, however, can say easily that it wasn’t good for their blood pressure. The history between the two clubs is well documented especially for the long-tenured fans. Getting the win along with late drama fits perfectly into the narrative especially for the fans who can now banter with their rivals in local pubs. Let us quickly brief you on the match highlights before we share our reactions from the crew.

Man for the Big Moment: Jorginho celebrates after scoring his first penalty at home to Leeds United. Credit | David Klein via Reuters.
Man for the Big Moment: Jorginho celebrates after scoring his first penalty at home to Leeds United. Credit | David Klein via Reuters.

Brief Summary

The opening few minutes went well into Chelsea’s favor as they were able to control possession and pin back Marcelo Bielsa’s side. Despite the bright start, Leeds grew into the match and their chances arose. In the 28th minute, a ghastly challenge by Marcos Alonso on Daniel James inside the box cost us a penalty. After VAR reviewed the clumsy foul by the Spaniard, Raphina easily scored the pen past his former teammate, Edouard Mendy. After a couple of half-chances between the two foes, Mason Mount was able to briefly silence the Leeds supporters as he was able to equalize after a cross from Marcos Alonso.

In the 58th minute, a surprising run from Rüdiger allowed the German to win us a penalty after it was initially deemed a cross. An awkward-looking challenge from the goal-scorer, Raphinha made the home supporters groan in distress as they believed it was a foul. After VAR reviewed the play, Chelsea was given the penalty. Jorginho then proceeded to calmly score the pen with ease past Meslier. The final 12 minutes were filled with action as Leeds was able to level the score once again. An apparent foul on Hudson-Odoi was not called and it allowed Leeds to squiggle past our counter-press and find an opening down the left flank. Harrison and Klich linked up beautifully and the latter was able to pick out Roberts on the edge of the box. Roberts then expertly found a run from the 19-year-old, Joe Gelhardt to set up a perfect goal in front of their crowd. In what seemed like another bump on the road, the whistle was blown in the 92nd minute of stoppage time for a foul inside our box. Antonio Rüdiger was once again brought down again by a silly foul from Mateusz Klich. Jorginho with ice in his veins sealed the victory with a well-placed penalty after what looked like another draw for the Blues. The late match-winner is the first since Florent Malouda in 2009. Now let us share our thoughts and reactions from the Chelsea Social family with the dramatic 3-2 win against Leeds United.

Rey (Rey_Blues30)

Wow, what a game! This game personifies Chelsea Football Club. The late drama even after the whistle exemplifies the historic rivalry between the two clubs. What a way to end the game. With a decisive penalty in stoppage time. Needless to say, I am a bit worried about the goals that we are conceding. This needs to be addressed ASAP. We can’t be conceding goals left and right after a positive spell. Hopefully, Tuchel can tidy this up. One criticism though for our manager is probably the subs. Hudson-Odoi shoul’ve been brought on sooner as well as the Lukaku sub. This festive period is always a tricky one for the Blues. This is the time where we start to falter a bit therefore staying composed in this hectic period is crucial. Onto to Everton where we will need to be sharp and decisive. CMON YOU BLUES!

Rob (@RJPJournalism )

A tough match and a full-blooded affair. Stupid defensive lapses again cost us but showed good character to fight back. Important to ‘stop the rot.’ Mount once again superb.

Dan (@idanknow05)

And breathe. Another scintillating Premier League encounter saw our Blues walk out winners. Yes, it was a fortunate win but with the way that the last few weeks have gone, it was a vital one to instill some belief in the group again.

I felt Mason Mount was particularly good as was Jorginho. Kai Havertz was particularly physical if not decisive enough in the final third. The troubling part was the way our defensive structure brought back memories of some of the more open encounters under Frank Lampard. Though it wasn’t costly in the end, there has been a clear reversal over the last couple of weeks that saw the Blues concede what is now eight goals in three games.

To be able to sustain a title challenge or at the very least trim the gap to Manchester City and Liverpool, Chelsea will need to do what they do best better: defend. Still, we take the win and move forward into another fixture on Thursday that should be a stern test once again. As always, back the team and Up the Chels!

Vik (@CFCVik)

Another match where I think our performance was poor and we were actually very lucky to beat Leeds. Considering the key players Leeds had missing, likes of Kalvin Phillips and Bamford; it should have been a more comfortable win considering our team on paper was much stronger even with three key players out.

We were rescued by Jorginho and Mason Mount. The performance in itself was actually poor, we never really dominated for long periods of the game and it could’ve gone either way. It was another match like Watford, we were poor but just managed to scrape through.

The first penalty was debatable but the second one was definite. It was a frustrating watch but one where we just had to get the 3 points. I think it was one of those games where if we started Lukaku, the game would’ve been finished a lot earlier. But ignoring the performance, the atmosphere and scenes at full-time was incredible. Love to see it.

Chelsea Extra (@CFCExtra)

What an important result that was for Chelsea. It’s another one of those smash and grab victories with a poor performance but it keeps Chelsea in the title race so it’s hard to complain. I think we all thought when Gelhardt scored, that would be it. We’ve conceded these late goals far too much recently and I don’t like the inevitability that there seems to be around them at the moment. It also doesn’t help that Chelsea have been really poor when coming from behind under Thomas Tuchel.

Still, it speaks volumes to the character of the squad that we were able to get forwards and hold our nerve in the final few minutes. Yes, there was some luck involved but Jorginho showed an incredible composure to tuck away both of his penalties and earn us the three points. Rudiger also had a massive influence, and it was nice to see him make up for his mistake in the second goal by winning the penalties. As I’ve been saying all season, the performances need to improve, although you can’t argue with the results we’re getting.

At this point, I’m wondering if it’ll just be a case of trying to ride out the storm and keep grinding out results until our key players are fit again.

Written by Rey (@Rey_Blues30) with help from Rob, Dan, Vik & Chelsea Extra

Edited by Dan Hill

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