Despite having the impressive 13-game winning streak cut down the same week, an immediate response from Conte’s side was successful, as following a delicious 4-1 victory over Peterborough on the third round of the FA Cup was all it needed to get back on winning ways.
Michy Batshuayi made a long-waited start for the Blues and capped it off with a great goal, which was preceded and followed by a Pedro goal, with Willian getting one for himself in the mix. John Terry wasn’t exactly who he wanted to be on his 50th FA Cup start for Chelsea, as instead of pulling out a remarkable performance, the Englishman got sent off and jeopardized a well earned Chelsea lead!
It went all quite well for Chelsea overall, however, and here are our ratings for each player of today’s game.
Asmir Begovic – 7 – Great stop at the early stages to deny a shocking Peterborough lead. Did well to wake up the Blues defence when the game was about to get out of hands. Hadn’t much else to do but be astonished watching the visitors get one back.
Kurt Zouma – 6 – Solid comeback to the first-team line-up from the Frenchman, who hadn’t played since his knee injury in February 2016. Excited to see what’s ahead for him in the later stages of the season. Was slightly off the radar on the second half as his mistimed tackles caused Terry to get sent off and Peterborough to find a consolation goal.
Gary Cahill – 7 – Good game from Cahill, who is still yet to miss a game this season, starting every single fixture of this term considering all competitions. Hit the post on the first-half. Replaced by Ola Aina on the hour-mark.
John Terry – 5 – He, the fans and the rest of the Chelsea members were all hoping for him to score a goal on his 50th FA Cup start in the Chelsea shirt – amazing achievement – but things didn’t turn out that way. A red card from a very questionable challenge to await on tomorrow’s headlines.
Branislav Ivanovic – 6 – He doesn’t get any faster or younger from here at least! Slightly too slow for the wing-back’s role as he was ran past too easily a couple of times. His great cross resulted a second Chelsea goal, however, which is always a big plus.
Nathaniel Chalobah – 8 – Important 90 minutes for the England U21. Played a wonderufl game in the heart of the Chelsea midfield completing great defensive challenges and running up and down just like N’Golo Kante does in the Prem. Had a good effort saved on the second period right after Willian’s 3-0 goal.
Cesc Fabregas – 7 – Yellow carded for a rough tackle on Nichols on the first period, and took the rest of the game very carefully. Good game however, doing his usual pin-point passing in the Blues midfield. A few great long through balls over the top.
Pedro – 9 – MOTM – Two great goals and some brilliant work-rate on the left hand side from the flying wing-man. Showed the fans why he’s the king of Stamford Bridge as he bagged his fifth and sixth goal of the season, which have all come on Chelsea’s beloved home ground. Would’ve had a 10/10 rating to his name, but the poor miss from five yards out on the first half has to be taken as a minus to the result. Also set up Willian nicely for the 3-0 goal. Clear man of the match.
Willian – 8 – He was in great form today, causing a lot of havoc for the Posh defenders with his quick feet and dazzling pace. Had some other tries blocked and saved before finding the target with an exquisite curling finish for 3-0. Replaced by Kante on the second half as the last sub of the day.
Michy Batshuayi – 8 – The young Belgian seemed a little nervous for making his first start in the Chelsea shirt since October 26th, but delivered what was most wanted from him – a quality goal and a strong performance. A few poor passes, heavy touches and too selfish play might’ve turned out to be more decisive in a league game against a slightly better side, but in this concept, he did very well. Let the development continue and he’ll soon be a real challenger for Costa in the starting eleven.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek – 8 – Quality from the youngster, who showed all his best attributes in today’s game apart from scoring. Tied up Batshuayi brilliantly for the 2-0 goal, and created many other chances for the Blues as well. Great dribbling on the ball and work-rate off the ball. Replaced by Cesar Azpilicueta following John Terry’s sending off.
Ola Aina – 6 – Got a good 30 minutes to impress the boss, but from what we saw today, a loan spell could do good for the England U21. Nathan Ake, who’s also able to play as a wing-back on both sides, is only making it harder for Aina to get playing time on the remainder of the season.
Cesar Azpilicueta – 6 – Came on after Terry’s red card, but only a few seconds later the visitors scored. Only had twenty minutes to play, but did just fine considering how the game was basically killed off by then. Had a long-range effort just wide from the post at the closing stages of the game.
N’Golo Kante – 6 – Orchestrated a few good chances after coming on, but mainly came in to make sure Peterborough weren’t going to pull any shockers out of the match inside the last 20 minutes of the game. And yes, he made sure they didn’t.