Chelsea met Aston Villa knowing they were on a two-game losing streak at the Premier League level, and on a three-game losing run in all competitions. Therefore, winning here was absolutely mandatory for Frank Lampard’s men.
The Blues made true of being favourites in the football betting tips and stopped the losing skid in front of their fans. A first-half goal from Tammy Abraham and an early second-half goal from Mason Mount pushed The Blues towards a huge win at home. Trezeguet had previously equalised for The Villians during the dying minutes of the first half.
Knowing there’s a Premier League during the weekend and a pivotal Champions League match in the week there after, Lampard chose to field an alternative squad with names such as Reece James, Andreas Christensen, and Kurt Zouma. The move paid off and one of the non-regulars was involved in Chelsea’s first goal. A pinpoint accurate cross from James found Abraham, and the striker nodded the ball home from close range past Tom Heaton.
It was Abraham’s 11th goal of the season. He ranks second in the Premier League scoring table, three goals behind Leicester star Jamie Vardy. It has been an impressive season for Abraham, and he continues to prove he is on track to become one of the best strikers in the Premier League sooner than later.
Chelsea controlled most of the first half, but they allowed Villa to find the back of the net in the first real scoring chance they had. Ahmed Elmohamady delivered a perfect cross deep inside the box, and Trezeguet scored in one of the oddest ways you will see in a long time. The Egypt international nodded the ball home, but it bounced off his right foot and sneaked past Kepa, who didn’t have enough time to react.
The first half ended with a 1-1 draw, but Chelsea only needed three minutes into the second half to recover a lead they would never relinquish. Abraham was involved once again, and this time he set up Mount’s goal beautifully. A cross from Willian found Abraham, who nodded the ball back to Mount and the central midfielder unleashed a volley that sneaked into an impossible angle for Heaton.
Abraham’s match ended in the 83th minute due to an injury, however, as he picked up a knock and was replaced by Michy Batshuayi. But Chelsea had several chances to increase their lead in the meantime. Christian Pulisic and Willian (twice) could have scored for The Blues, but Heaton was magnificent every time he was required.
Villa could have equalised the game, Douglas Luiz came close to score with a volley that went over the bar in the 85th minute, and he later came close to beat Kepa with a header from inside the box in the 90th minute. The Spaniard, however, came up big to save the three points for Chelsea in what was a must-win for the London-based side.
With the win, Chelsea remain in fourth place but now have 29 points, and remain just three points behind third-placed Manchester City. Meanwhile, Aston Villa are in 15th place with 15 points, and sit just one point above the relegation zone.