Reece James and Trevoh Chalobah stole the show as Chelsea thrashed Juventus 4-0 to book a place in the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League.
Chelsea were utterly dominant from the off against Juventus at Stamford Bridge. It paid off 25 minutes into the game as Trevoh Chalobah fired home the opening goal with the strike standing after a VAR check for a potential foul and handball. Alvaro Morata almost equalised for Juventus on his return to west London, but Thiago Silva pulled off a marvellous goalline clearance to preserve the hosts’ lead.
Having had a shot saved in the first period, Reece James buried home a thumping strike ten minutes into the second half to make it 2-0. Just three minutes later, Callum Hudson-Odoi added the third goal for Thomas Tuchel’s side, tapping the ball home after some brilliant work by Ruben Loftus-Cheek, to all but kill the game.
Juventus came close to pulling a goal back through Weston McKennie, but Edouard Mendy was at hand to thwart him while Hakim Ziyech drew a save from Wojciech Szczesny at the other end as the clock wound down. However, there was enough time for the Blues to add a fourth, with Timo Werner scoring on his return from injury in stoppage time to add more gloss to the scoreline.
The result means Chelsea are now through to the knockout stages and are seated at the top of Group H. But with Juventus level on points in second place, the group winner will be decided on the final matchday. Here are our player ratings for both sets of players.
Edouard Mendy: 7/10
A largely quiet night for the Senegalese international. He was beaten by Morata in the first half and had Thiago Silva to thank for preventing Juventus from scoring. Mendy pulled off a fine acrobatic save to deny McKennie in the second period.
Trevoh Chalobah: 9/10
No one has more goals at Stamford Bridge this season than defender Trevoh Chalobah (3) ⚽ pic.twitter.com/JTYzHmgQ76
— B/R Football (@brfootball) November 23, 2021
Making his first Champions League start, the Chelsea academy graduate was on point with his defending from the kickoff, keeping a close watch on the dangerous Federico Chiesa. Oozed calm and composure at the back and hardly let anything past him. But his most valuable contribution on the night came at the other end when he lashed home Chelsea’s opening goal to set the tone for the rest of the game. He continues to grow with each passing game.
Thiago Silva: 9/10
A master-class of defending from the Brazilian international. Always in the right place to cut out any threat, but the standout moment came minutes after Chalobah’s goal when he raced back to clear Morata’s goal-bound effort off the line in an acrobatic manner. He almost made one forget that he is 37 years old. Silva did not make a single mistake on the night and was in cruise control of proceedings at the back.
Antonio Rudiger: 8/10
Rudiger did not have a lot to do in the defensive sense but was alert whenever needed. As usual, the German was a force to be reckoned with in the opposition box from set-piece situations, notably assisting Chalobah for the opening goal. He carried the ball out from the back with great confidence and had some good moments of link-up play in the left-side channel.
Reece James: 9/10
5 – Reece James (5 goals, 5 assists) is one of only two players to both score 5+ goals and assist 5+ goals in all competitions for Premier League clubs this season, along with Mo Salah (16 goals, 7 assists). Hot. pic.twitter.com/Vk1iVJlxza
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) November 23, 2021
Top-notch from the Chelsea right-back. He was a menace going forward and had forced Szczesny into two big saves in the first period before eventually beating him with a venomous strike in the second half. James was then involved in the buildup to the fourth Chelsea goal, spraying a lovely pass for Ziyech, who set Werner up for the strike. He was also sound in his defensive duties, hardly letting anything slip by on his side.
N’Golo Kante: 7/10
The diminutive Frenchman started off well, making driving forward runs towards the Juventus box regularly. Unfortunately, Kante picked up a knock and had to be forced off the field in the first half only. Tuchel will be hoping it is nothing serious ahead of the clash against Manchester United at the weekend.
The Italian pass master made it look so simple in the middle of the park as he kept things ticking along nicely for Chelsea, helping them control the proceedings from the start to the moment until he was subbed. Jorginho did not have to overexert himself defensively, with his team dominating throughout.
Ben Chilwell: 8/10
Yet another solid all-round display from the former Leicester City man, who was a threat going forward while keeping a lid on Chiesa, which forced Massimiliano Allegri to switch the Italian winger’s position to the opposite flank. Chilwell should have done better with an opportunity to score in the first half but was a constant outlet and had a hand in James’ goal in the second period. He was taken off with an injury, which will be a concern for the manager.
Gutted to see Ben Chilwell get injured.
Speedy recovery Chilly ? pic.twitter.com/4kW7poSxkD
— CFC-Blues ⭐️⭐️ (@CFCBlues_com) November 23, 2021
Hakim Ziyech: 7/10
Handed a starting berth ahead of Mason Mount, the Moroccan international made a positive impression on the night. He created the first goal with his corner and was generally sharp with his link-up play in the final third. Ziyech then went on to set up the fourth goal for Werner with a low cross. There were times when some of his decisions left Tuchel frustrated on the sidelines.
Christian Pulisic: 5/10
Slotting in as the false nine on the night, the USMNT international failed to make the desired impact on the proceedings. His hold-up play was not good enough, and he found it difficult to get past Leonardo Bonucci and Matthijs de Ligt. He was taken off for Werner.
Callum Hudson-Odoi: 8/10
The youngster seems to be growing in confidence with each passing game, and it showed against Juventus. He was the Blues’ most dangerous forward all night, keeping Juan Cuadrado pinned back in his own half. There were times when his decision-making was a bit iffy, but he did well to finish the third goal, which effectively killed off the contest.
Callum Hudson-Odoi is creating a chance every 24 minutes in the Champions League this season…
That’s more frequently than Messi, De Bruyne, Müller, Neymar and more ? pic.twitter.com/ROdfjO834o
— LDN (@LDNFootbalI) November 23, 2021
Ruben Loftus-Cheek: 8/10
Loftus-Cheek replaced the injured Kante in the 36th minute and made a huge impact. Strode forward with power and force each time he got on the ball and did brilliantly in the lead-up to Hudson-Odoi’s goal, weaving past the visitors’ defence. Strong and aggressive in his tackles, forceful with his ball-carrying, the midfielder is pushing for a regular starting berth.
Timo Werner: 7/10
Werner came on for Pulisic for the final twenty minutes or so, marking his return from injury. He scored in the dying embers of the game to make it 4-0. It will serve as a good confidence booster for the German.
Cesar Azpilicueta: 6/10
On for the injured Chilwell, the Chelsea skipper tightened things up on the left flank for the final twenty minutes.
Saul Niguez: N/A
Saul was introduced in place of Jorginho with less than 15 minutes left. The Atletico Madrid loanee played some nice passes.
Mason Mount: N/A
Mount replaced Hudson-Odoi in the 76th minute. Helped Chelsea see out the game.
Wojciech Szczesny: 7/10
Chelsea is a top team with great players & coached super well
Terrible performance from Juve, a poor lineup of 4 CMs to start, too many individual mistakes
Szczęsny saved it from being 6-0
— Marco Messina (@IFTVMarco) November 23, 2021
Szczesny was one of Juventus’ better players despite the fact that he conceded four goals. The ex-Arsenal stopper made two good saves in the first period and then stopped another effort from Ziyech late in the game. Not a lot that he could have done about the ones he let in.
Juan Cuadrado: 5/10
Cuadrado was largely pinned back due to the dual threat of Ben Chilwell and Callum Hudson-Odoi, and was booked for a rash challenge on the latter. He was unable to provide the usual attacking outlet he does on the right.
Leonardo Bonucci: 5/10
A forgettable outing for the usually reliable veteran Italian defender who looked uncomfrtable each time Hudson-Odoi ran at the defence at pace. In addition to that, Bonucci was also uncharacteristically sloppy with the ball at his feet on the night.
Matthijs de Ligt: 6/10
The Dutchman fared slightly better than his defensive partner on the night and made a couple of key interventions on either side of half-time. However, he was partly responsible for Chelsea’s second goal as his mishit header fell to James, who made no mistakes.
Alex Sandro: 5/10
The Juventus left-back had his hands full with the threat of the onrushing James, who enjoyed a field day on his side. This also meant that Sandro could not get forward as much as he would have liked, effectively depriving Juventus of any width going forward.
Weston McKennie: 6/10
Deployed on the right flank, the USMNT international tried his best to try and make things happen, but it was just not possible. Put in the hard yards off the ball and even forced a save from Mendy in the second period.
Rodrigo Bentancur: 5/10
Poor from the Uruguayan international who never really got a foothold into the game, with the Chelsea midfielders running rings around him. He did very little of note before making way for Paulo Dybala.
Rabiot & Bentancur are hurting the team ATM. Too many lost balls in the midfield. Think a midfielder like Arthur is needed to bring more calmness in build-up play
Great spirit & fight from Bonucci, Mckennie & Cuadrado
Few changes & I think a tie could be on the cards still
— Marco Messina (@IFTVMarco) November 23, 2021
Manuel Locatelli: 6/10
The summer signing from Sassuolo had a few positive moments on the night, including a great pass to set Morata up for the chance in the first half. However, these moments came few and far between, which meant he never really managed to have a sustained impact.
Adrien Rabiot: 5/10
The Frenchman had no chance against James, who was in the mood on Tuesday night. He failed to offer any protection defensively, nor did he provide any incision going forward.
Alvaro Morata: 5/10
The Spaniard thought he had found the back of the net on his return to Stamford Bridge in the first period, but Silva’s stunning goalline clearance denied him an opportunity to celebrate. Did little of note from that point on.
Morata’s hopes and dreams of scoring in his old home being completely squashed in seconds by the legend we all know as Thiago Silva. pic.twitter.com/O264wo7tnF
— nicci ♡ ⭐️⭐️ (@niccijane_cfc) November 23, 2021
Federico Chiesa: 5/10
Paired up alongside Morata at the top ahead of Dybala, Chiesa failed to make much of an impact on the night. The Chelsea defenders did a good job of keeping him quiet throughout his time on the field.
Paulo Dybala: 5/10
On for Bentancur just before the hour mark. Dybala could not turn the tide in his team’s favour.
Moise Kean: 5/10
Sent on for Morata with a little over 20 minutes left. Kean Hardly got a touch.
Arthur Melo: 5/10
The Brazilian replaced Locatelli in the 67th minute. Did not make any noticeable impact.
Dejan Kulusevski: N/A
On for Chiesa for the last ten minutes.
Koni De Winter: N/A
Late substitute for Cuadrado.