LONDON — There was a degree on Saturday when issues felt depressingly acquainted for Timo Werner. Chelsea have been 1-Zero up in opposition to Southampton courtesy of Trevoh Chalobah‘s ninth-minute header when the 25-year-old rose to move dwelling a Callum Hudson-Odoi cross for a much-needed, confidence-boosting objective that will nicely have settled the competition. Nevertheless, referee Martin Atkinson was inspired by the video assistant referee, Mike Dean, to take one other take a look at a reasonably innocuous problem from Cesar Azpilicueta on Kyle Walker-Peters within the build-up, and after doing so, he disallowed the objective, to the fury of these in blue.
Head coach Thomas Tuchel was booked for his protests, and the officers have been greeted with howls of derision as they made their manner off on the interval at a rain-sodden Stamford Bridge.
Werner is used to having objectives chalked off, as a rule for offside, main him to explain his debut 12 months in England as “the unluckiest season in my profession,” with a exceptional 16 strikes disallowed since arriving from RB Leipzig in a €60 million deal. It’s one side of his wrestle that has led to hypothesis he might look to return to Germany after discovering his path sophisticated additional by Romelu Lukaku‘s €115 million arrival from Inter Milan.
Tuchel insisted throughout Friday’s pre-match information convention that Werner has no motive to really feel annoyed, born of the idea that the German worldwide stays dedicated to working his manner again to type. And, on Saturday, Werner’s perseverance was rewarded. No one on both group had extra photographs than his six; his 4 heading in the right direction was additionally a recreation excessive, and he turned the sport again in Chelsea’s favour after James Ward-Prowse scored a penalty and was then despatched off following one other VAR intervention, this time for a late sort out on Jorginho.
Substitute Ross Barkley performed a raking go to Cesar Azpilicueta, who crossed first time for Werner to complete after 84 minutes, and after Ben Chilwell added a 3rd within the 89th, the Blues reworked a troublesome afternoon into one they ended high of the Premier League. Within the course of, Werner ended a nine-game run and not using a objective within the League — his first since April 24 in opposition to West Ham, and solely his seventh total — lastly giving him one thing to construct on within the weeks forward.
“We’ve the sensation that each time he scores, there’s some VAR choice to take it away from him,” mentioned Tuchel of Werner. “Very, very slim choices. I keep in mind one in opposition to Liverpool, for instance, that was tremendous shut.
“He has to maintain on going. He can nonetheless enhance his recreation — there are a variety of issues to enhance — however we’re pleased and relieved that he scored within the late minutes of this recreation as a result of it was a really, essential objective for us to safe the win.”
But it might all have gone in a different way, and it threatened to be one other troubling 90 minutes for Tuchel after defeats to Manchester City and Juventus prior to now week. Chelsea had the ball within the web 3 times within the first half as they dominated proceedings, with the 5 adjustments to the beginning line-up each a mirrored image of the fatigue evident in Turin and the vitality those that got here off the bench introduced late on.
Chalobah, Chilwell, Hudson-Odoi and Ruben Loftus-Cheek have been all given the prospect to select up the place they left off with Werner additionally drafted in, and the one actual disappointment from the primary half was they weren’t additional forward. Lukaku completed beautifully within the 36th minute after a trademark marauding run from Antonio Rudiger however was accurately flagged offside earlier than Werner’s effort was disallowed.
Tuchel, the grasp of the half-time change, was outshone in that division by his reverse quantity, Ralph Hasenhuttl, who launched Ibrahima Diallo for Theo Walcott on the break and shuffled the pack to present Southampton extra management in midfield. The guests, and not using a win within the league this season, deserved their equaliser, coming simply after the hour mark as Chilwell introduced down former Chelsea defender Valentino Livramento within the field, giving Ward-Prowse the prospect to transform.
Lukaku as soon as once more regarded an remoted determine. He had simply 9 touches within the first half, a tally that rose dramatically to 24 at full-time however solely as Chelsea maximised their man benefit following Ward-Prowse’s 77th-minute dismissal for a tough foul on Jorginho. Tuchel then proved he hadn’t misplaced his contact for game-changing substitutes, utilizing his remaining change to introduce Barkley — forward of Kai Havertz — and the midfielder promptly performed a superb cross-field go to seek out Azpilicueta for Werner’s match winner within the 84th minute.
“Within the final two video games, we misplaced and felt that one thing was missing, so we determined to place Ruben [Loftus-Cheek] in as a result of we have been conscious of the excessive urgent in midfield, however we nonetheless wished to undergo midfield. To have Ruben and [Kovacic], who can not solely go, however drive with the ball to flee the urgent, that was the explanation we picked them. With Ross [Barkley], we hope he can present what he reveals in coaching. In the meanwhile, he’s very energetic, he doesn’t really feel the strain and is able to create one thing.
“We’ve to concentrate to precise type, we have to win video games and right this moment was a day the place we would have liked a little bit of a mixture.”
Chilwell, in his first league begin of the season, made sure of the factors with a pointy volley within the 89th minute after Lukaku had someway hit the put up from contained in the 6-yard field. The England defender is one other seeking to resurrect his profession after a disappointing spell. Werner has firm in that regard, and each males will need extra afternoons like this.