Chelsea secured all three points in a 0-1 draw against London rivals Fulham in the Premier League fixture. It was a much-required match for Frank Lampard and his men to win who was low on confidence after having just won two of their last six Premier League outings.
Although in their last fifteen London derbies Fulham had lost fourteen and drawn just one, Chelsea could not take any chances going into the match. Hakim Ziyech returned to the starting line-up along with Olivier Giroud and Christian Pulisic.
The Blues threatened the Fulham goal for quite some time with Mason Mount being at the center of it all. First, it was his delightful corner whipped in which saw defender Antonio Rudiger climb highest to meet the ball.
However, that effort was palmed away brilliantly by goalkeeper Areola. Up next when Ben Chilwell delivered in a ball it was poorly cleared by the Fulham defense and Mount got on the end of the loose one. A thunderous strike rattled the bar.
Finally, Chelsea was able to break the deadlock in the 78th minute much to Frank Lampard’s satisfaction. Once again it was left-back Ben Chilwell who got into an attacking position and delivered a ball into the penalty area.
It broke away right inside the box only for Mason Mount to volley it straight into the back of the net. A much deserved and hard-earned goal for the blues would eventually see them seal all three points.
Watch: Olivier Giroud’s tackle is ignored by the referee
In the 68th minute of the match when Chelsea was venturing out into a potential counterattack switch with Ben Chilwell steaming ahead, striker Olivier Giroud too was running across the length of the pitch to get into a scoring position.
However, Fulham man Harrison Reid came to shield the French international and what followed was very bad. Giroud pushed and shoved him away quite roughly and wasn’t shown any card for his actions.
What’s more surprising is that this incident was actually seen by the on-field referee Peter Bankes as he signaled to the pair but didn’t take any action. Giroud used both hands and quite nastily tackled Harrison but got no punishment.
Although this incident didn’t have any direct impact on the game, it was still an extremely poor decision by the referee who should be doing more in such cases. Once again it goes to shows that quality is degrading slowly.
Peter Bankes followed the Giroud case with yet another poor decision when he gave a yellow card to Decordova Reid for a tackle on Ben Chilwell. But this challenge seemed pretty fair and legit and didn’t deserve the card.
Robinson’s red card foul on Chelsea’s Cesar Azpilicueta was really the turning point of the match as it narrowed Fulham down to 10 men. Quite a rash challenge which saw Chelsea’s Mason Mount confront Robinson immediately.