Chelsea suffered defeat as they were beaten 3-1 at the London Stadium in Mauricio Pochettino’s second league game in charge.
The future was looking bright last week as they almost overcame a difficult Liverpool test at Stamford Bridge. But the optimism soon faded as a lack of conviction in both areas ultimately cost the side dearly.
Pochettino’s side dominated long stretches of the game, played smoother football but it wasn’t enough to give the Argentinian his first win as Chelsea boss.
West Ham had too much nous, and were certainly more streetwise even after being reduced to 10 men midway through the second half, a display that typified David Moyes as a manager.
What went wrong for Pochettino?
West Ham were more robust and allowed their physicality to dominate the game with James Ward-Prowse catching the eye with his tenacity and energy in the midfield.
Dealing with set pieces was a constant issue throughout the game, with Chelsea looking nervous with the deliveries of the former Southampton captain.
Wasting opportunities in front of the goal was the epitome of Chelsea shooting themselves in the foot throughout the game. Enzo Fernandez, whose £107m move from Benfica in February is the British transfer record that Caicedo could potentially break, wasted the perfect chance to score his first Chelsea goal.
England winger Raheem Sterling was a constant threat for Chelsea and he was brought down by Tomas Soucek in the penalty area but Fernandez’s spot-kick was saved by Areola diving to his right.
What next for Chelsea?
It will be a case of getting back to the drawing board for Pochettino. They missed the options of Reece James who provided leadership and tenacity in the game against Liverpool.
In addition to that, Moises Caicedo should add significantly more security to the midfield despite conceding a penalty in the final moments of the game.
With the attacking talent and the pressure to get the right blend within the team, Pochettino will be desperate to ensure there isn’t a repeat of this physical inferiority.