Brighton & Hove Albion manager Roberto De Zerbi has revealed he specifically targeted two Chelsea players in their impressive win over the Blues in the Premier League.
Brighton hosted Chelsea at the Amex Stadium in a Premier League fixture on Saturday and secured a deserving a 4-1 win over the Stamford Bridge-outfit.
It was also Graham Potter’s first return to his former side since leaving the Seagulls for Chelsea earlier this season. Brighton got the better of Potter and Chelsea, tactically outclassing the Blues and earning three important points.
In the process, they also inflicted on Chelsea their first defeat since Potter took charge of the club. The Blues were unbeaten in nine games before facing Brighton.
Speaking after the match, De Zerbi revealed that Brighton targeted Chelsea defenders Trevoh Chalobah and Marc Cucurella.
“We prepared the game one-to-one with Mitoma with Chalobah and one-to-one Solly March against Cucurella. But Trossard was fantastic, Adam Lallana the same. All the players were fantastic,” the Brighton manager revealed.
Both Chalobah and Cucurella were dismal against Brighton as the Seagulls ran riot against the west London outfit.
It took Brighton just five minutes to break the deadlock and open the scoring. Chelsea lost possession in the defensive third and Leandro Trossard rounded Kepa Arrizabalaga before slotting the ball in to make it 1-0.
The home side doubled their lead in the 14th minute after Ruben Loftus-Cheek inadvertently turned the ball into the Chelsea post from a Brighton corner.
Chelsea then conceded another own goal in a nightmarish first half for Potter’s men. Moisés Caicedo released Pervis Estupiñán on the left, and Chalobah diverted the ball into the Chelsea net in a desperate attempt to cut out the Ecuadorian’s cross.
Chelsea, though, pulled one back at the start of the second-half. Conor Gallagher sent a cross into the Brighton box and Kai Havertz leapt to head it past Robert Sanchez and into the net.
Chelsea search for another goal continued but never came. In fact, it was Brighton who scored the next goal, ending Chelsea’s slim hopes of an unlikely comeback.
Edouard Mendy made two saves to deny Julio Enciso, but Pascal Gross converted from the rebound to seal Brighton’s win in the 90+2nd minute.
The result leaves Chelsea fifth and Brighton eighth in the Premier League points table, with 21 and 18 points respectively.
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