Premier League Match Report: Norwich City 2-3 Chelsea
Chelsea got the better of newcomers Norwich City in a tense encounter at Carrow Road which finished 3-2 in favour of the visitors, thus ending Frank Lampard’s wait for his first win as the Blues manager.
Chelsea were under pressure to claim all three points against Norwich following a resounding 4-0 defeat against Man United on the opening day and a lacklustre draw against Leicester City last weekend, whilst the Canaries were hoping to build on their 3-1 victory over Newcastle United.
However, it was Chelsea who had the last laugh in what was a five-goal thriller marked by a see-saw battle between two sides that played some eye-catching and direct attacking football.
Tammy Abraham’s crisp finish in the third minute opened the scoring for the Blues, as Mason Mount showcased some incredible vision and presence of mind to pick out Christian Pulisic, who laid it on for Cesar Azpilicueta to come up with the assist from the right.
Norwich, though, hardly held themselves back after the early set-back and strung together some lovely passing in the middle of the park.
Emi Buendia used his guile and control to turn past Jorginho, creating space to initiate a brilliant move that was finished off by local boy Todd Cantwell, thus drawing Daniel Farke’s side level in the 6th minute.
However, it didn’t take long for Chelsea to restore their lead, as some aggressive pressing from the Blues won possession back inside Norwich’s half and presented Mason Mount with a glorious opportunity to make it 2-1.
The academy graduate didn’t disappoint the fans and scored his second goal of the Premier League to give the visitors the advantage for the second time in the 17th minute.
Interestingly, Norwich didn’t seem bogged down by that goal and they continued to threaten Chelsea with plenty of energy and some crisp passing in the midfield and final third. And it was Buendia once again who masterminded the Canaries’ comeback for the second time in the game.
The Argentinian playmaker ripped the Blues defence apart with a delightful through ball for Teemu Pukki and the Finnish international took advantage of some pretty ordinary defending from Andreas Christensen and Kurt Zouma to find the net for the fifth time in the Premier League this season, making it 2-2 at the half-hour mark.
Christensen nearly made up for his mistake, with the Dane forcing a save from Tim Krul off a powerful header, whilst Buendia tested Kepa Arrizabalaga with a free-kick from range.
Both the teams went into the interval with the scoreline deadlocked at 2-2 but it was Chelsea who took the game by the scruff of the neck after the restart. The Blues not only pressed Norwich off the ball to disrupt their free-flowing passing game but they also created a lot more opportunities in the final third.
The likes of Pulisic and Barkley looked a lot more threatening in the second half and caused plenty of problems for the home side at the back before Tammy Abraham netted his second of the night and the winner in the 68th minute to hand the Blues all three points.
Mateo Kovacic’s pass from the midfield cut Norwich into half and Abraham created his own space to find a clever finish between the legs of Grant Hanley, thus becoming the first Englishman since Frank Lampard in November 2012 to score two goals in a Premier League game for the Blues.
Norwich came ever so close in their pursuit of an equaliser for the third time in the game when Ben Godfrey’s header cannoned back off the post but Chelsea did enough towards the end to hold on to the slender advantage.
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The victory left Lampard’s side 10th in the standings and they will be looking to make it back-to-back wins when they play host to another promoted side Sheffield United at home next weekend.
Here’s how some of the Chelsea fans reacted to the 3-2 victory at Carrow Road:-