Last night, Chelsea got their 2014/15 Barclays Premier League campaign off to a flyer against Burnley, defeating the Clarets 3-1 at Turf Moor.
1) Leading up to the game, the main talking point amongst the press and fans was the debate regarding who will be Chelsea’s first choice goalkeeper this season. Legend Petr Cech or youngster Thibaut Courtois? The answer appears to be crystal clear now; Thibaut Courtois. The Belgian was given the nod by coach Jose Mourinho to make his first league appearance for the blues. Despite Scott Arfield’s 14th minute opener, Courtois impressed. A commanding and confident figure in the penalty area, Courtois was brave he made numerous saves throughout the game. This was surely enough to convince Mourinho that the former Atletico shot stopper is the way forward for Chelsea’s future ambitions.
2) Cesc Fabregas also made his league debut for Chelsea, providing two assists in a master class of midfield play that saw him pick up the Barclays Man of the Match award after the game. The Spaniard had a terrific pre-season with The Blues and looks to have settled in very quickly at the Stamford Bridge club.
3) Three minutes after Burnley took the lead, the blues were level. Diego Costa, another summer signing was on hand to poach his first league goal of the season. There is no doubt in my mind that this is just the first of many as Chelsea chase domestic glory this year. The Brazilian wasted no time in laying down his marker in English football. His goal reinstates the fact that Chelsea mean business this term. Burnley away from home last season could have proved very difficult for Jose Mourinho’s outfit, but now that they have a proven goalscorer in their ranks, ‘lesser’ clubs such as Burnley should no longer pose such a threat this season.
4) Club legend Didier Drogba made his first league appearance of the year after signing as a free agent in this transfer window. The move had suggested that he was brought in to tutor the likes of Diego Costa, helping him settle down quickly at Chelsea. However, his presence on the pitch is also inspiration for his team mates and he got a rousing reception by the following supporters when he was introduced on 84 minutes.
5) What was fascinating was that Chelsea had three different goalscorers. One from defence (Branislav Ivanovic, 34), one from midfield (Andre Schurrle, 21) and yes, one from up front, (Diego Costa, 17). In previous seasons Chelsea were heavily dependent on either their midfield or defence for goals, but last night’s outcome just might imply that a different trend is about to follow suit.
Mourinho won’t be happy with his side’s early conceded goal but he will certainly be happy in the manner in which they responded to their 1-0 deficit as Chelsea set their sights on bigger and better things for the remainder of the season.
How did you see the action on monday night at Stamford Bridge? Did Costa and Fabregas impress you just as much, and are they enough to win Chelsea the Premier League title? Let us know in the comments or on twitter @TBRFootball .