Chelsea battle for draw but should get more against determined Liverpool
The opening period was cagey, with both teams trying to find fluency as the rain poured down. There were 20 minutes of industrious closing down without much attacking quality.
From one foray Chelsea won a soft free kick, which David Luiz stepped up to convert with an exquisite side footed effort over the wall which dipped perfectly to kiss the post on its way in. Liverpool keeper Simon Mignolet should have done better, but it was an immaculately executed effort from Chelsea’s defensive hub. The rest of the half consisted of a cautious and well executed defensive plan from the Blues, with Jurgen Klopp’s team trying their best to pick holes in the impressive structure they faced.
Things got spicier as the game progressed, with Liverpool equalising from a Giorgio Wijnaldum header as both teams began to grow into the match. Chelsea were given a penalty that looked as though it would decide the game, with Diego Costa felled by Joel Matip as he ran clear following a Dejan Lovren mistake.
It was a definite penalty, though soft, and Costa stepped up to take the spot kick with first choice pen man Eden Hazard barely into his tracksuit having been removed moments earlier. Mignolet atoned for his earlier error with a dive low to his right to block the ball out for a corner.
From that moment it felt as though Chelsea had missed their chance. They looked content to settle for a slightly disappointing point, while Liverpool didn’t really show the conviction or invention up front to actually get a second; despite some promising spells for both teams.