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Fabregas, Courtois And More – 5 Talking Points From Chelsea’s 1-0 Win Over Sunderland

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West London giants, Chelsea, secured 30 points of all available 30 from their last 10 games, with a win over Sunderland keeping them 6 points away from 2nd-placed Liverpool on the log.

Cesc Fabregas’ 1st half goal made all the difference in a tough game at the Stadium of Light, and the encounter sure produced a lot of talking points, some of which are highlighted below.

Fabregas still has a lot in the tank

Chelsea's Cesc Fabregas scores his side's goal at Sunderland

The Spaniard has largely been out of first team reckoning since the season began, making just 2 starts and 4 appearances off the bench until the visit to the Stadium of Light.

His 3rd start turned to be the right decision from Conte, as Fabregas proved he still has a lot of offer. Apart from his goal, the 29-year-old also created 4 key passes and completed 84% of his passes.

His form has seen him get featured in Chelsea’s last 3 Premier League games, and he is definitely giving Conte’s selection headaches with some impressive performances and hard work in training and on the pitch.

Definitely, he is far from finished like it was suggested earlier on in the season.

Chelsea can grind out results

The Blues didn’t play their best football against Sunderland, yet they managed to get all 3 points.

Despite scoring 23 goals in 9 games before Tuesday’s game, the team struggled to produce anything spectacular to test Pickford, and with 6 shots on target registered, only 1 could find its way past the brilliant English goalie.

The Blues have proved for a 2nd straight time that they only need few clear-cut opportunities to win games, and it is just what makes the difference in title races.

Courtois remains a world-class goalie

Thibaut Courtois produced an incredible save at the end of the game to ensure the win

The Belgian has seen less of actions this term, with Chelsea’s backline providing him with enough protection.

However, he has always turned up with the brilliant saves anytime he gets tested and Tuesday night was no different.

Januzaj and van Aanholt both came close to getting an equaliser for the Black Cats, but Thibaut was alert to thwart their brilliant attempts with excellent saves.

9 clean sheets in 15 games and it just has to be agreed that Courtois is one of best hands around.

Chelsea can be fine without Hazard, but he is needed

Eden Hazard couldn’t be available due to a knock he sustained against West Brom, but Chelsea did just fine without his influence.

But that’s not to take anything away from the impacts he makes in games, as if he had been fit enough to play against Sunderland, the scoreline could have been more than just 1-nil.

Antonio Conte has now equalled the Chelsea record of ten wins in a row

So, while Chelsea proved to have enough depth in the attack by bagging a vital win without their best player, it can’t be denied that his quality remains very much needed if they are to emerge title winners this term.

3-4-3 has been found out

Since their clash against Tottenham, the Blues have not really impressed as they did prior to that meeting. Spurs pressed them higher on the pitch and were unlucky not to walk away with at least a point.

Manchester City’s wastefulness simply got punished, and the win wasn’t because Chelsea were the better team. Same happened against West Brom, with Conte having to switch formations in the 2nd half to squeeze out a win.

Sunderland countered Chelsea’s 3-4-3 with a similar formation, stocking their midfield with defenders, and it almost got Moyes a result.

3-4-3 seems not to be getting the desired effects any longer, with rivals working round the clock to find a solution to stop Chelsea. A drop of form is imminent if Conte continues to stick with it, and the earlier the better if he makes necessary adjustments.