Jose Mourinho was critical of his side’s inability to finish their chances when Chelsea were defeated 1-0 by Everton on Saturday evening, and rightly so.
The Blues had over 20 shots at the Everton goal but failed to convert a single one and rarely worked Tim Howard with their wayward shooting, so Steven Naismith’s header proved to be the difference between the two sides and earned his team all three points at Goodison Park.
Mourinho gave his verdict on the match:
“We were the best team because we played the best football, because we dominated the whole game, because we had 21 shots.
“But by the other way, a team who has 21 shots – some easy, in easy situations – and made a mistake at the end of the first half, maybe I should say we deserved to lose.”
Some players were more guilty than others and Mourinho was particularly critical of one of the club’s summer signings Andre Schurrle, who had a really poor game and demonstrated why he had one of the worst conversion rates out of all attacking players in Europe’s top five leagues last season.
Chelsea’s best chance fell to Samuel Eto’o but Gareth Barry’s block denied the forward and had Schurrle provided a better ball the debutant would have been celebrating his first Chelsea goal.
“It was a good block but it is an easy goal if Schurrle passes the ball quicker. He gave a slow pass.
“Schurrle’s missed three big chances to score. Samuel’s the same and other players had chances too.”
But the manager has to shoulder some of the responsibility himself as he picks the team and perhaps some of his changes during the game were odd. Schurrle was rightly taken off and replaced during the second half, but it was a surprise to see a rather jaded looking Frank Lampard and Oscar, who was looking a bit leggy himself, came on for Juan Mata.
Chelsea still dominated possession but the quality of it wasn’t the same without Mata on the field and it didn’t feel like we were going to get back into the game despite a lot of time remaining. The change in formation did us no favours and the shape was altered again when Fernando Torres replaced Ashley Cole, who had a day to forget, when things became a bit desperate.
It’s still early days of the season and none of the teams that we would consider to be our main rivals are really firing yet either, so better performances are ahead and there’s no need to be worried so soon into the campaign, but there’s plenty for Mourinho to think over and one of the things he should do is have a word with David Luiz.
We all know that the Brazilian is talented and are equally aware that he’s capable of the ridiculous as well as the sublime. I’m hoping that with Mourinho as our defensive organiser that we see the end of Luiz rushing out trying to win every single ball. He cannot neglectfully abandon his position so often and it’s unfair on his team-mates to have to cover for his lack of positional awareness. He was caught out for the goal as he ran towards the ball and left Branislav Ivanovic at the back post against two Everton attackers, it was a goal that hurt Chelsea especially just before half time against a side that has been keeping a lot of clean sheets.