Chelsea 4 Everton 0
Chelsea thrashed Everton to close in on a top four finish. The Blues will not have had an easier Premier League game than this and their intentions were clear from the start. Youthful with a sprinkling of experience, Chelsea were 1-0 up after 14 minutes when Mason Mount opened the scoring against Everton. From that point onwards, this fixture effectively ceased to be a contest. Pedro doubled Chelsea’s lead before the break and six minutes after the re-start, Willian scored Chelsea’s third. What must have been going through the mind of Carlo Ancelotti on his first return since being sacked by Chelsea despite winning a double with the west London side in 2010 ?
Ancelotti’s Everton were outclassed by Chelsea
The Italian’s new charges showed industry, but little in the way of fight once they realised they would return to Merseyside following another loss inflicted in the capital. By the time Olivier Giroud guided in Chelsea’s fourth goal, Stamford Bridge was singing the name of “Super Frank Lampard.” The once successful player under Ancelotti had worked his magic over his former manager’s new club. Everton with their lack of invention, couldn’t have been more complicit in their own demise if they tried. The win tightens Chelsea’s grip on the Premier League fourth spot on 48 points, three points ahead of fifth placed Manchester United, and just two points off third placed Leicester, but having played one game more than the Foxes.
Mount scored his first goal in 19 games
Billy Gilmour started his first Premier League game, and once again demonstrated his vision and intelligence in the heart of Chelsea’s midfield. Liverpool know all about Gilmour after he was the architect of their FA 5th round demise five days ago. The 18 year old picked up from where he left off, turning in a man of the match performance. Alongside him, Ross Barkley is starting to show what Everton fans know only too well. Barkley was full of running, and was unlucky not to get on the score sheet himself, but did provide the assists for Chelsea’s second and third goal.
Pedro doubled the Blues lead
Everton could have made a game of it in the 26th minute when Richarlison won possession high up as Kurt Zouma and Antonio Rudiger pushed out. The Brazil striker had Dominic Calvin-Lewin alongside, and following his direct run, found the England man to his left. With a delicate chip, he beat Kepa Arizzabalaga, but agonisingly for him and the massed Evertonians ensconced in the away end, the upright too. That was really as good as it got for the Toffees who were 2-0 down at that stage. How that chance might have sparked a Toffee’s turnaround will never be known, as Chelsea just went up a few gears.
Mount scored his first goal in 19 matches. He started the move to find Pedro on his left and raced away for the return. Pedro obliged for Mount to turn and fire in low past Jordan Pickford after 14 minutes. Chelsea could have doubled their lead four minutes later. Willian was too quick for Mason Holgate on the right, and fired low, but this time Pickford made the save. Everton’s respite however would not last long. Midway through the first half, Barkley released the advancing Pedro to strike low past Pickford at his near post to make it 2-0. Bernard’s injury towards the end of the first half compounded the visitors’ woes. Former Arsenal forward Theo Walcott came of for Brazil forward at the re-start.
Willian made it 3-0 against Everton at Stamford Bridge
However Chelsea’s scoring continued unabated. Six minutes after the re-start, Barkley played in Willian racing in on the eighteen yard line, and his low powerful shot flew past Pickford as the Toffee’s defence switched off. The Blues were rampant. Less than a minute later, Pedro stayed on his feet wide of the Everton area. But as he slipped under the pressure of his marker, the Spain forward managed to scoop a shot just over Pickford’s bar. Again there would be no reprieve for Ancelotti’s side. From a short corner, Willian’s follow up cross went a long way to elude the Everton defence. Where was the marking? Giroud remained focussed on the flight of the ball to angle it back and beyond Pickford for a 4-0 scoreline.
Giroud competed Chelsea’s 4-0 rout of Everton
Despite their desperate plight, Ancelotti had four strikers on the pitch – Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin, Walcott and Moise Kean, until Calvert-Lewin made way for Anthony Gordon in the 76th minute. Kepa however was rarely troubled, and when Djibril Sidibe found Walcott deep on the right, Kepa bravely smothered the danger from his cross. Chelsea comfortably held on to their clean sheet in a game which they outclassed a strangely timid Everton side.