Matchday Musings: Sunderland 3-4 Chelsea
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You can never judge a football match on paper, and Sunderland proved that statement to be true after almost upsetting Chelsea tonight. Second in the table visit the last place Sunderland on their home field in the North of England. American Jozy Altidore opened the scoring of the night being able to slide through the Blue’s defense on a corner kick. The match was full of goals, seven in total, and drama especially with Phil Bardsley scoring on both goals by the end of the ninety minutes. In the end however Chelsea walked away with another three points in the Premier League cementing their second place position even more.
Times, serif">Frank Lampard Stays in Form
Times, serif">His age is obviously a concern especially after Benitez’s worry in Lampard at the end of his season last year as he struggled to get his record breaking goal. This year is a whole new story. Scoring in back to back Premier League matches, three goals in total, Super Frank Lampard is pushing his London club farther every match. Breaking Bobby Tambling’s club record for most goals this past season, Lampard is adding even more on top of that scoring 5 goals in all competitions to date. Mourinho will be using his assets in many matches to come, getting every last bit of talent from him before he hangs his boots. Times, serif">
Is Sunderland Worthy of Being Relegated?
Despite the final score, Gus Poyet’s squad were playing like a top club rival against the Blues. With no previous knowledge of the table, one would guess that these two teams were an even match, not 2nd and last place. Jose Mourinho has a lot to discuss with his players even after winning against the Black Cats. However, at the end of the match both sides scored a lot of goals each, gaining valuable play time and scoring opportunities. Sunderland play against the Spurs this coming Saturday at home again and could be able to pull an upset like they came close to with Chelsea. Keeping this pace of play for the rest of the season could save themselves from being relegated to the Championship again.
Man of the Match: Eden Hazard
The Belgium left winger acquired only a few years ago has been improving tremendously every match proving to be Mourinho’s favorite for the left side of the field. If his skills were ever doubted before, it is all history now after scoring two match winning goals and assisting Lampard’s header. Eden Hazard was playing at his full potential the entire match being involved with nearly every offensive Chelsea play, opening up the field for many opportunities. He has scored eight goals thus far in all competitions, including the UEFA Super Cup, Champions League and Premier League.
Ups and Downs for Phil Bardsley
Late into the second half with either side able to secure a win the score sat at 2-3. A counter attack produced by Demba Ba caught the Sunderland defense by surprise, scrambling up the field to deny a further lead. Ba’s cross found the feet of Sunderland defender Phil Bardsley scoring against his own keeper. A horrible result for the home team after they had produced so much to stay in contention with the English giants. The score now 2-4 sent many home supporters to the exits with a bleak end for the Black Cats. It was not over yet when five minutes later Bardsley made up for his mistake scoring against Petr Cech to now have a 3-4 scoreline. The Chelsea defense stayed strong in the end not allowing any more chances by the home side. Sunderland and Chelsea stay in their respective positions on the table from before the match.