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Kante 9/10 to haunt former club Leicester; Pulisic 7/10 for cameo

The Premier League leaders continued their title charge on Saturday afternoon at the King Power Stadium, as Chelsea played out a comfortable 3-0 win against Leicester City.

It didn’t take long for Thomas Tuchel’s side to take full control of the game as they enjoyed early spells of possession, and they got off to the perfect start when Antonio Rudiger headed home from a Ben Chilwell corner.

The Foxes couldn’t seem to match Chelsea’s intensity and were made to pay again shortly after the opening goal, with former Leicester City star N’Golo Kante carrying the ball forward before striking home from outside of the box.

Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers made a double substitution at the break that provided some life but, despite some more promising spells, Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy was only troubled by a long range effort from Daniel Amartey. And after Tuchel made a double change of his own, he saw Hakim Ziyech find fellow sub Christian Pulisic inside the box to lock up all three points.

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Positives

Chelsea enjoyed total dominance in midfield areas as the game played out in perfect fashion for the visitors in the first half. They were dangerous going forward and equally as impressive without the ball, forcing their opponents into mistakes and limiting opportunities at goal.

Negatives

Leicester began to edge their way back into the game during the second half, which could have been dangerous had they taken one of their chances, but the Blues soon took back control of the game after the hour mark.

Manager rating out of 10

9 – Tuchel’s tactical approach made what would normally be a difficult away game become a slightly more intense training match in the first half. Despite some pressure after the break, Tuchel’s tactical substitution saw both players involved to score the third goal.

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

GK Edouard Mendy, 7 — Mendy had nothing to do in the first half but dealt with everything comfortably in the second, producing a strong stop against a long-range effort.

DF Trevoh Chalobah, 7 — The 22-year-old was untested for large parts of the game but was impressive when required, making a number of interceptions to end attacking phases.

DF Thiago Silva, 8 — The Brazilian showed all of his experience as the middle centre-back and was involved in the third goal by beginning the Chelsea attack. He was isolated at one point of the match against Jaime Vardy but looked unfazed.

DF Antonio Rudiger, 8 — Rudiger timed his jump better than everyone as his glancing header from a corner sent the ball into the back of the net for the opener. Some occasional marauding runs forward disrupted Leicester’s defensive structure.

MF Reece James, 7 — Another strong display on the right flank saw James get the better of his marker on a number of occasions, and he played a hand in the second goal that put Chelsea into cruise control.

MF Jorginho, 8 — A nightmare to deal with in the middle of the park as the Italy international displayed his passing range at the King Power Stadium. Unlucky not to get an assist in the first half after an astute ball found Kante.

MF N’Golo Kante, 9 — The former Leicester star was unstoppable. Kante influenced the game at both ends of the pitch and was perfect with his decision-making. Whatever plan Leicester had in the game just couldn’t spark into practice with the France international dictating the match from the central areas.

MF Ben Chilwell, 8 — A precise corner put the ball in just the right area for Rudiger to head home. Chilwell worked tirelessly throughout the game, constantly looking to get in behind Amartey to stretch the play down the left flank.

FW Mason Mount, 6 — While Mount got into some good positions, he wasn’t involved as much as he would have liked in the key phases of play.

FW Callum Hudson-Odoi, 7 — The 21-year-old put in a solid display on the left wing and attacked defenders at the right times. Often found the right pass in the attacking third.

FW Kai Havertz, 6 — Havertz pulled Leicester City’s centre-backs around with intelligent movement in the first half but was kept quiet after the restart before being replaced.

Substitutes

Christian Pulisic, 7 — Pulisic found space inside the box and calmly placed the ball past Kasper Schmeichel to score the third.

Hakim ZIyech, 7 – Introduced for Mount and helped put the game beyond reach as he turned inside the box and found Pulisic for the assist.

Ruben Loftus-Cheek, N/R – Substituted on for Jorginho to offer solidity at the back and better protection from set pieces. Loftus-Cheek didn’t have much to do as Chelsea played out the game against a deflated Leicester City.

Source espn

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EltasZone Sportswriters, Sports Analysts, Opinion columnists, editorials and op-eds. Analysis from The Zone Team
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