Chelsea 0-1 Bournemouth: Dan Gosling scores dramatic winner - with help from VAR
Report and highlights as Blues wobble again at Stamford Bridge
Last Updated: 14/12/19 10:53pm
Bournemouth recorded a shock 1-0 win at Chelsea for their under-pressure manager Eddie Howe as VAR came to the fore late on to award Dan Gosling's winning goal.
Gosling's looping effort (84) was originally disallowed for offside by the referee but a VAR check revealed that it was Dominic Solanke that was in an offside position and, as he was not interfering with play, the goal was given.
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- How the teams lined up
The Cherries had to rely on their goalkeeper, Aaron Ramsdale, to make some crucial stops but Chelsea rarely carried the quality in the final third. Frank Lampard's men have now lost four of their last five Premier League games and are now looking over their shoulders in the race for the top four.
Meanwhile, this win broke a run of five straight defeats for Howe, who were without a number of key players through injury, including Nathan Ake and Callum Wilson.
Chelsea: Kepa (6), Emerson (6), Ruidger (6), Zouma (7), Azpilicueta (6), Jorginho (6), Kante (6), Willian (6), Mount (6), Pulisic (6), Abraham (6).
Subs: Hudson-Odoi (6), Kovacic (6), Batshuayi (6)
Bournemouth: Ramsdale (8), Stacey (7), Francis (8), Mepham (8), Rico (8), Fraser (9), Lerma (8), Biling (7), L.Cook (7), Gosling (8), King (8)
Subs: Solanke (7),
Man of the match: Ryan Fraser
How Chelsea were stifled by Howe masterclass
There were worried looks on the Bournemouth bench in the opening stages as Ryan Fraser went down holding his knee after a bright start from the visitors. He managed to run the knock off and was asked to do plenty of defending without the ball as Chelsea dominated possession and territory.
Frank Lampard made three changes from Chelsea’s last Premier League clash against Everton. Antonio Rudiger came in for just his second Premier League appearance of the season after returning in midweek from a groin problem.
Eddie Howe made four changes as injury problems continue to plague the Cherries. Nathan Ake and Callum Wilson both were missing while Arnaut Groeneveld and Dominic Solanke also dropped out. Josh King returned after missing the last four games.
For all their ball retention, chances were at a premium with Tammy Abraham providing the best moment of the half when slamming a close-range effort into the side netting.
Perhaps the way Bournemouth handled Chelsea's threat in the opening 45 minutes gave them confidence that a result might be possible after the break. With Fraser and Josh King finding more space, it was the visitors that looked the more dangerous. However, King was denied a clear strike on goal by a brilliant Kurt Zouma challenge before Gosling was inches away from getting onto a cut back from the Norwegian.
Despite registering 18 shots on goal in the game, Chelsea did lack guile in and around the box, however, they really should have taken the lead on 73 minutes. A spot of head tennis in the Bournemouth box dropped perfectly for Emerson from six yards out, but his header was straight at Ramsdale who clawed the ball to safety.
Frustration levels were now off the chart for the hosts as they continued to waste good possession with sloppy play in the final third. And they were made to pay with seven minutes remaining.
A corner was cleared to the edge of the box and turned back into the danger zone where Gosling got ahead of Kepa Arrizabalaga and looped an effort into the net despite a last ditch clearance from Cesar Azpilicueta.
However, referee Graham Scott blew for offside as the linesman had his flag raised. Bournemouth ran back to defend the free-kick but the VAR check sent them into raptures as it showed that Solanke, not Gosling, was the man offside and the goal was awarded.
Ramsdale was called into action in stoppage time to push clear at Mateo Kovacic effort but it was a tame response from Chelsea, who have yet to take a point from any games where they have fallen behind this season.
Man of the match: Ryan Fraser
This was the Ryan Fraser of last season, back to his best. Lively, intelligent and full of quality and guile. He was the best player on the pitch by a mile, to the extent that if Chelsea had him on their side, they would have caused Bournemouth more problems. After struggling to get into the game in the first half, he sprung to life in the second as he linked superbly well with King, who profited from some clever Fraser passing down the left. It's a timely reminder for Bournemouth and potential suitors that Fraser's existing deal expires at the end of the season and he has been linked with a free transfer to Liverpool and Arsenal.
'Boring, boring, Chelsea?'
Analysis from Lewis Jones at Stamford Bridge:
The feeling I got walking away from Stamford Bridge was one of boredom in terms of Chelsea's attacking output. Chelsea passed without purpose and time and time again took the wrong option. I think deep down Lampard agreed with the lack of excitement in their play, although he dodged using the word 'boring'.
Lampard said: "Today we didn't get the fans excited enough. The fans shouldn't be excited if we're playing 10 balls across our back four. That's not a team I want to manage."
The lack of creativity in the final third for a team jammed packed with high quality players is becoming quite staggering.
Look at the shot count; you'd assume Chelsea did everything but score and made Ramsdale make save after save but that wasn't the reality. Players made poor decisions under the pressure of playing in a frustrated environment - summed up by Azpilicueta's late cross into the box from deep which went straight into the arms of Ramsdale. Chelsea have scored just 11 Premier League goals at Stamford Bridge - the same amount of home goals as Aston Villa and two less than Norwich. It's very easy to stop Chelsea at moment; be organised and defend deep. West Ham did it, Everton did it and now Bournemouth have achieved it.
Lampard needs to find a solution. The race for top four is very much on again.
What the managers said...
Chelsea manager Frank Lampard: "I'm disappointed but I was asked in press conferences when we were winning about how good we were. I was always guarded against that. Whether I've been proved right or not, this is the reality. If we're not at our best and can't break teams down with players not being able to do something to beat teams that are organised, then we need to find another way. That's the test and hard work needed for us."
Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe: "We needed that - it's the best we've fought and competed. And the most desire I've seen from the group - I don't think there's been a lack of effort but things have been going against us. We looked a threat in the second half. Everyone gave everything.
"We're delighted the VAR call went in our favour. You are just waiting for the decision - I was well aware of the importance of that moment. We needed a bit of luck. It could be a moment to turn our fortunes around."
- Since they were promoted to the Premier League in 2015, no side has won more top-flight away games against Chelsea than Bournemouth (3, level with Liverpool).
- Chelsea have lost two of their last three Premier League home games (W1), as many as they had in their previous 28 at Stamford Bridge (W16 D10 L2).
- Having scored in 14 consecutive home league games, Chelsea have now failed to score in two of their last three at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea have an exciting London derby to look forward to next Sunday against Tottenham, live on Sky Sports, while Bournemouth host Burnley next Saturday at 3pm.