Full time: Southampton 1-1 Chelsea
Half time: Southampton 1-0 Chelsea
Thanks for your company this afternoon. If you want more, and you surely do, Barry Glendenning is on Clockwatch duty.
Peep peep! Southampton end their losing run with an admirable defensive performance, symbolised by the impressive debutant Mohammed Salisu. Chelsea dominated possession but were nowhere near the best.
Takumi Minamino gave Southampton a half-time lead with a delicious bit of deception. Mason Mount earned and then scored a penalty early in the second half, but Southampton held on to a point relatively comfortably and might have grabbed two more when Jannik Vestergaard hit the bar.
90+3 min Ward-Prowse’s high, hanging corner just evades Vestergaard at the far post. That might be the last attack.
90+1 min Three minutes of added time, though there might be a bit more now because there’s a break in play after a clash of heads between Tella and Kante.
90 min Mount nutmegs Bednarek sweetly and hits a cross that is cleared by Vestergaard. Mount has been terrific today.
88 min The tireless Mount, who has been Chelsea’s best attacker, wins a corner on the left. Ziyech’s outswinger is headed away at the near post by Djenepo. Mount then swishes over the bar from 25 yards.
87 min Southampton are a few minutes away from ending a run of six straight league defeats.
84 min: Chance for James! Lovely play from Mount, who beats Djenepo on the left and stands up an inviting cross beyond the far post. James, leaning back, half-volleys it into orbit from eight yards. That didn’t impress Thomas Tuchel much.
81 min Now Djenepo is flattened by Jorginho. I haven’t seen one man take this much punishment since Miller’s Crossing.
80 min Djenepo loses Alonso with a Cruyff turn and is pulled back. Alonso is booked.
78 min Mount puts in a dangerous cross from the left towards Ziyech, who is eased away from the ball by Bertrand. Good defending.
77 min Southampton bring on Nathan Tella for the goalscorer Takumi Minamino.
76 min A double change for Chelsea: Jorginho and Hakim Ziyech replace the substitute Callum Hudson-Odoi and Mateo Kovacic. I don’t think Hudson-Odoi is injured.
74 min “I think the most exciting Chelsea team of the Abramovich era was under Carlo Ancelotti,” says Václav Smerda. “Sure, the first stint of José Mourinho was exciting, but more because of José’s arrogance, media stunts and the actual results than the style of play.”
73 min McCarthy makes an excellent diving save from Mount, though it wouldn’t have counted – the flag went up afterwards, with Hudson-Odoi offside in the build up.
71 min: Vestergaard hits the bar! Another corner from Ward-Prowse is only half cleared and comes out to Redmond on the left. He drives a flat cross that skims off the head of James at the near post and flies towards Vestergaard, who steers a looping header onto the crossbar! That was a fine effort.
70 min Bertrand’s cross is headed behind by Zouma. This is Southampton’s first corner of the game… and the usually excellent Ward-Prowse curls straight into the arms of Mendy.
67 min “So pleased for Takumi,” weeps Ian Copestake. “In Liverpool’s belated fumblings in the market to find a centre-back he was treated like loose change found down the back of the sofa.”
There’s a player in there, I think. He has the precious ability to lower his heart rate in the opposition penalty area.
66 min Lots of Chelsea pressure at the moment, but they aren’t really getting behind the Southampton defence. This might be a job for Olivier Giroud.
62 min Chelsea’s passing has been a bit snappier since half-time, though they still aren’t creating much. Werner isn’t having a great game and Hudson-Odoi has been quiet since coming on.
60 min “As a Liverpool fan I thought the most exciting Chelsea was the last season under Mourinho,” says Niall Mullen. “Like a BBC prime time series an evil megalomaniac took on the Doctor. The Doctor eventually triumphed but the baddie resurfaced in later seasons to cause more destruction.”
Say what you like about Mourinho, but he knows how to go out in style.
57 min Mount is fouled again, this time just outside the area by Ward-Prowse. The free-kick is in a great position: 22 yards out, slightly to the right of centre.
It was a calm penalty from Mount. He sent McCarthy the wrong way and slid the ball low to his right.
PENALTY TO CHELSEA! Mount nutmegs Ings and is chopped down: a forward’s tackle and a clear penalty. It came from a short corner, which is why Ings was back in his own area.
51 min Werner scurries past Vestergaard and hits the side netting from a very tight angle. He took the wrong option there.
51 min “Hi Rob,” says Ciaran Murphy. “As a lifelong Chelsea fan, the most exciting Chelsea football was in Carlo’s first season, the epitome of sexy football!”
Didn’t they score seven or more on four occasions? That’s absurd.
50 min Werner’s cross is calmly intercepted by Salisu, who is having an excellent full debut.
49 min “Most exciting Chelsea side probably Mourinho’s first stint,” says Ciaran Crowther. “From back to front, one of the most impressively dominant sides this league has ever seen.”
Agreed. They don’t get enough credit for how good they were going forward, especially when Duff and Robben were flying.
48 min Alonso gets behind Djenepo and drags a cross towards Werner, who is dispossessed by Bertrand. Turns out Alonso was offside anyway.
46 min Peep peep! Chelsea begin the second half. Timo Werner has moved to centre forward.
Chelsea have made a half-time change – Callum Hudson-Odoi has replaced the injured Tammy Abraham, who has an ice pack on his ankle.
Actually, here’s a question for Chelsea fans: what’s the most exciting football you’ve played in the Roman era? Ancelotti’s first season? Mourinho’s first 18 months? Rafa?
“This is all very reminiscent of Sarriball,” says Ian Burch, “ but without the tabs and the occasional moments of brilliance from Eddy Hazard to alleviate the boredom.”
Do I hear the first strains of Tuchel Out?
“Hi Rob,” says Niall Mullen. “The Southampton Leonard Cohen hits include: If it be your Will Smallbone, Shane Long Marianne (I know), Che that’s no way to say goodbye, Oriol Romeu want it darker. I also apologise for nothing.”
“I think the wretched 1-0 win at Fulham was an indicator to the board of just how limited Frank was,” says Sean Orlowicz. “And easy games coming up or not, he had all but proven he couldn’t beat the best managers. Why not give Tuchel a comfy run to start and get to know the whole squad before the Atleti game?”
Oh I agree, the timing was perfect. But Lampard will feel, rightly or wrongly, that things would look different had he been given another month.
Peep peep! Southampton lead after a slightly odd half of football. Chelsea dominated throughout yet barely created anything, and they were punished for the sterility of their domination when Takumi Minamino scored a delicious goal in the 33rd minute. See you soon for the second half.
45+2 min Werner scurries between two players and finds Abraham in the area. He tries to cut inside Salisu and falls over; Anthony Taylor isn’t interested. I’d like to see that again, though I’m pretty sure Salisu didn’t move his leg towards Abraham at any point.
45 min Play resumes, and there will be three minutes of added time.
44 min The VAR check is over. Djenepo is still down though.