Chelsea ratings: Aubameyang’s poor form 4/10 epitomizes Champions League loss to Dinamo Zagreb


Chelsea’s stuttering start to their Champions League campaign opened with a 1-0 loss to Croatian club Dinamo Zagreb on Tuesday.

The Blues were shocked in the 13th minute when Mislav Orsic ran in to complete a brutal counterattack. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang then had the ball in the back of the net but Ben Chilwell had been taken offside when he met Mateo Kovacic’s pass to launch the debutant.

While they held plenty of possession throughout the game, Chelsea struggled to upset the hosts and so had to wait for their first point on the Continent this season.

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Good points

There were plenty of enjoyable linking plays between the front three early on, while the Blues saw plenty of possession as they had near total control of the ball. There were some good recoveries when Dinamo threatened to break through in the second half.

negatives

Despite their possession, Chelsea were guilty of playing a number of sloppy passes, and they also needed to play the ball faster as they were unable to penetrate Dinamo Zagreb’s deep and resolute defence.

Having been unable to really test goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic, they were cut far too easily as Orsic rushed to open the scoring. While the hosts were pushed deep, Chelsea were never able to make them truly uncomfortable.

Manager rating (out of 10)

Thomas Tuchel, 5 years old — The Chelsea manager will remain furious with his players after a disappointing performance, especially since nothing Tuchel tried could have enough impact to at least salvage a point. Those frustrations surfaced when he received a yellow card.

Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best, players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Kepa Arrizabalaga, 6 years old – Was beaten by a smart finish from Orsic but made a decent save to deny Arijan Ademi then tipped Stefan Ristovski’s shot impressively to the woodwork.

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2 Related

DF Cesar Azpilicueta, 5 – Did the basics on the ball but struggled to find any sort of killer pass. Also struggled to match Orsic whenever he got going.

DF Wesley Fofana, 4 – Was unable to keep up with Orsic as he moved forward and scored the game’s only goal, while the Frenchman struggled to deal with Bruno Petkovic’s physique. Made slight improvements as the game progressed and seemed comfortable on the ball in the forward areas.

DF Kalidou Koulibaly, 4 – Was beaten to the head by Bruno Petkovic for the opener, and although he made a good tackle to stop Ademi, he was beaten too easily at times. Booked for foul on Orsic when the Croatian beat him to the ball and had other moments when he was too slow to react. His late chest to Christian Pulisic could have ended up being an assist.

MF Reece James, 5 years old – Got himself into good positions but his passing was poor at times, as was his first-half run with too many of his attempts to obediently hit Robert Ljubicic. Almost found Armando Broja at the far post after doing well to reach Jorginho’s pass. Hit the post with a shot in the closing stages.

MF Mason Stand, 5 – Moved the ball fairly well through the middle but struggled to get things moving in the final third for most of the game, although was unlucky to see a smart cross go away and then an effort instinct saved. Reserved for dissent.

MF Mateo Kovacic, 6 – Moved the ball brilliantly at times and was one of the few players to successfully break the lines, although Ben Chilwell was offside when he found the back with a seek pass. There was a sloppy period towards the end of the first half.

Chelsea’s start to the new Champions League campaign went badly as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was among the players who had a bad day. Denis Lovrovic/AFP/Getty Images

Mr. F. Ben Chilwell, 5 — En route Orsic shot well. Made progress most of the time but found himself well framed by Sadegh Moharrami and Stefan Ristovski. Did well to reach Kovacic’s pass to give Aubameyang a chance but was slightly offside. Sums up Chelsea’s night when their throw-in came in and came back without hitting anyone.

Striker Kai Havertz, 5 – Had some encouraging flashes with some good runs and crosses that nearly found Aubameyang, although a poor touch let him down when there was a chance to break through later in the half. Was too undecided when there was a chance to break through after Josip Misic lost the ball but then was unlucky to have his header blocked.

Forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, 4 – Was involved in a fine link-up play early on but needed to be more ruthless in the opposition box – his wastefulness was accentuated by Orsic’s goal. There were a few moments where the rookie wasn’t quite on the same page as his new teammates.

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FW Raheem Sterling, 4 – His first half was epitomized when he made a good run into the opposition’s box before eventually being pushed off and losing the ball. Completely wasted the opportunity to counter with a bad pass following a Dinamo error and didn’t do much in the second half.

Substitutes

Hakim Ziyech, 3 years old – Substituted for Azpilicueta at half-time and showed early intention with a shot from range, although Livakovic didn’t mind. Was largely ineffective, hitting gruesome jabs and crosses, but nearly found Broja with a cross in a dangerous area. Hit an effort straight at Livakovic from close range. His night was encapsulated when he caught the ball before it was offside.

Jorgenho, 5 years old – Substituted for Kovacic in the 59th minute and tried to move the ball and shake things up but failed to find a way through the Dinamo defence.

Armand Broja, 5 years old – Substituted for Aubameyang in the 59th minute and kicked a ball towards the forward post moments after coming on as he tried to inject some extra energy into their game.

Marc Cucurella, N/R – Substituted for Chilwell in the 71st minute and was unable to make many notable attacks, as he was beaten to the ball a few times as he tried to defend.

Christian Pulisic, N/R – Substituted for Sterling in the 75th minute and tried to get into dangerous areas but didn’t quite make them count. His head in the last moments is far from finding the goal.

Source: espn.co.uk

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