Chelsea’s first game after the international break was a bittersweet 3-3 draw at home against Southampton. There were both positives and negatives to take from this game, a game that can again be described as a game of two halves. Timo Werner’s brace gave Chelsea the lead in the first half, before Danny Ings pulled one back right at the stroke of half time. Chelsea then went to concede another goal, this time from Che Adams, thanks to some calamitous defending from Kurt Zouma and a very characteristic error from Kepa. Havertz made it 3-2 after a few minutes and the hosts thought that the game was won. But right at the death of the game Jannik Vestegaard made it 3-3, robbing the Blues off 2 points.
Christian Pulisic making his first start of the season was the main talking point in the build up to this game. Thiago Silva and Edouard Mendy missed out, meaning Andreas Christensen and Kepa Arrizabalaga came into the side. The team set up in a 4-2-3-1 formation, with a double pivot of Kante and Jorginho, Pulisic and Mount on the wings, Havertz playing his preferred no. 10 position and Timo Werner as the main striker.
Chelsea started the game in inspiring fashion. There was the much needed fluidity in attack, Chilwell kept on spamming crosses from the left flank and the pace of Werner and Pulisic was too much for the Saints backline to handle. Christian Pulisic had a couple of chances early on but couldn’t capitalise on them. Then in the 15th minute, Werner made it 1-0 with a beautifully worked solo effort. The German got his second just 13 minutes later, after Jorginho caught his run with a beautiful long pass. Chelsea were in control of the game for the remainder of the first half and even had some half decent chances to put the game to bed. But Danny Ings rounded Kepa to give the Saints an unlikely glimmer of hope after Kai Havertz gave away possession coming under pressure from the Southampton midfielders.
The second half started on a turbulent note for Chelsea, as the visitors attempted to take control of the game. The likes of Ings and Adams had some chances of their own as the Chelsea backline looked more and more fragile. Then Kurt Zouma came under pressure from Che Adams and gave the ball away in his own half, Kepa made a horrible attempt to get the ball in control and even after the ball nearly went out of play, Adams found his way through Kepa, in what would surely be the jammiest goal of the weekend. Chelsea were immediately on the attack afterwards and 2 minutes on from that goal, Werner found himself in a good position and squared it to Havertz who made it 3-2. For a moment there, it looked like Chelsea had the game wrapped up, but the Saints still had a few tricks up their sleeves. Chelsea did well to keep possession till the 91st minute, where Theo Walcott seized an opportunity from a set piece situation and Jannick Vestergaard headed in the final equaliser for Southampton to round off yet another frustrating night for Frank Lampard’s men.
Chelsea (4-2-3-1): Arrizabalaga; Azpilicueta, Christensen, Zouma, Chilwell; Jorginho, Kante, Pulisic (James), Havertz, Mount (Ziyech), Werner (Abraham)
Southampton (4-4-2): McCarthy; Walker-Peters, Bednarek, Vestergaard, Bertrand; Walcott, Ward-Prowse, Romeu (Diallo), Redmond (Tella); Adams (Long), Ings