Chelsea behind the scenes: Crystal Palace win, Kurt Zouma tackles and the impact of Billy Gilmour


It was another roller coaster evening for Frank Lampard’s team, who almost lost twice twice in advance at Crystal Palace for Kepa to point a Scott Dann on the head of the post and Kurt Zouma to do without a doubt the best tackle of the season on Christian Benteke places the Blues in third place in the Premier League ranking.Again, this is a match that Chelsea should have won much more easily thanks to the first goals of Olivier Giroud and Christian Pulisic.

But when Wilfried Zaha pulled out one with an effort of 65 mph over 35 meters that Kepa would have been disappointed not to have a firm hand, Palace grew in the game and found a lot of joy in the midfield.

Billy Gilmour, chosen to replace Jorginho, was good in possession but his inexperience without it was a bit exposed, while Reece James was very much on the ball but his positioning meant that Palace was very happy on their left flank.

While substitute Tammy Abraham made it 3-1 after a good pass from Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Palace backed up by one goal in less than a minute when Patrick van Aanholt caught Andreas Christensen napping before competing in Benteke.

The Belgian was denied overtime by this magnificent Zouma challenge but the irregular end summed up some familiar failures.

Alan Smith was one of the lucky few allowed at Selhurst Park to see the action up close and you can see him doing it all with his instant reaction from the ground above full-time.


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