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Chelsea vs Leicester City. Premier League.

Stamford BridgeAttendance39,953.

Chelsea 2

  • C Gallagher (sent off 28th minute)
  • R Sterling (47th minute, 63rd minute)

Leicester City 1

  • H Barnes (66th minute)

Chelsea 2-1 Leicester: Raheem Sterling scores twice and Conor Gallagher sent off as Blues beat Foxes

Match report and highlights as 10-man Chelsea survive a desperate Leicester fightback to win 2-1 at Stamford Bridge; Conor Gallagher sent off in first half for two yellow cards; Raheem Sterling struck twice in second period to open his Chelsea account; Harvey Barnes hit back for Foxes

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from the match between Chelsea and Leicester City in the Premier League

Raheem Sterling ignited his Chelsea career with a virtuoso second-half performance that inspired the 10-man Blues to victory at home to Leicester.

Both teams came into the game on the back of disappointing defeats the previous weekend and Thomas Tuchel, who was forced to watch the game from the stands thanks to his touchline ban, responded by tweaking his formation, if not the personnel within it.

But it looked as though those well-laid plans would go up in smoke when Conor Gallagher was sent off after less than half an hour for illegally halting two Leicester counter-attacks.

However, Sterling scored both his first and second Chelsea goals to lift the mood at a nervous Stamford Bridge and, while Harvey Barnes quickly hit back for the Foxes, the home side were able to hold on and move back into the top half of the Premier League.

Player Ratings

Chelsea: Mendy (5), James (8), Silva (7), Chalobah (6), Cucurella (7), Gallagher (4), Jorginho (7), Loftus-Cheek (6), Mount (6), Havertz (6), Sterling (8).

Subs: Azpilicueta (7), Kovacic (6), Pulisic (6), Chilwell (N/A).

Leicester: Ward (6), Castagne (7), Amartey (6), Evans (6), Justin (7), Praet (6), Tielemans (8), Soumare (6), Dewsbury-Hall (6), Barnes (7), Vardy (5).

Subs: Iheanacho (6), Perez (6), Ndidi (N/A).

Man of the match: Raheem Sterling

How Sterling helped Chelsea bounce back

Chelsea were embarrassed in their previous outing at Leeds but Tuchel resisted the temptation to overhaul his starting XI, with only the suspended Kalidou Koulibaly - who was sent off at Elland Road - left out, and Trevoh Chalobah starting.

But the Blues head coach decided to move away from his tried and tested 3-4-3 formation in favour of a 4-2-2-2 that saw Gallagher employed as one of the sitting midfielders.

However, the England international never looked comfortable with his extra defensive responsibilities and picked up two quick yellow cards, leaving Leicester rubbing their hands at the prospect of playing with an extra man for over an hour as they searched for a first Premier League win of the season.

Also See:

Team news

  • Chelsea made just one change to the side that lost at Leeds, with Trevoh Chalobah replacing the banned Kalidou Koulibaly.
  • Leicester were without the injured James Maddison and Wesley Fofana, who is close to joining Chelsea.

But Sterling had other ideas and came roaring out of the blocks for the second half. The former Manchester City forward opened his Chelsea account with a shot from the edge of the area that deflected off Daniel Amartey and looped over the luckless Danny Ward, then grabbed his second by tapping home Reece James' right-wing cross at the far post - a finish fans of his former club saw on numerous occasions.

Barnes hit back immediately for Leicester after playing a neat one-two with Jamie Vardy before drilling a shot past Edouard Mendy, who probably should have done better at his near post and looks like a goalkeeper out of form.

The visitors lay siege to their host's goal in the final 20 minutes but, with Vardy missing two great chances and Ayoze Perez hitting the underside of Mendy's bar, were unable to salvage a point and remain in the relegation zone.

Tuchel: Gallagher made a very bad decision

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Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel says his side conceded far too many chances in the last 15 minutes and were lucky to take away all three points

Despite seeing his team hold on for victory, Tuchel was in no mood to let Gallagher off the hook after the match, saying: "Today he is responsible for what he did and he knows this was a huge mistake.

"It's a very, very bad decision from Conor and of course he's upset - everyone was upset because it almost killed the whole match."

Tuchel also aimed criticism at his team as a whole for allowing an attacking corner to be turned into a Leicester counter-attack, which led to Gallagher's second yellow card.

"It's not purely his fault," said Tuchel. "It's sloppy how we take set pieces at the moment - we lack belief and we lack precision.

"It's not good enough how we take set pieces and on top of it we give chances away and are sloppy in the coverage, we are bad in decision-making.

"We have to stop this immediately. We are on this with the team and I don't know why it happened again."

Gallagher left to rue troubled start

Conor Gallagher Chelsea Leicester
Image: Conor Gallagher reacts to the second yellow card that brought his afternoon to an early end

Sky Sports' Joe Shread:

Gallagher has waited longer than most for his chance in Chelsea's first team, having been sent on loan to four different sides before finally making his Blues bow as a late substitute in the opening-day win over Everton earlier this month.

The 22-year-old really grabbed the attention of both fans and Gareth Southgate, the England manager, during a highly productive spell at Crystal Palace last season, when he excelled as a goalscoring, marauding midfielder.

However, he has been pressed into action in a very different role in recent weeks having been asked by Tuchel to fill the not insignificant hole the injured N'Golo Kante has left in the heart of Chelsea's midfield.

Gallagher struggled in the heavy defeat at Leeds last weekend and was replaced after 64 minutes, but things got even worse against Leicester in what was his first start for his boyhood club at Stamford Bridge.

Gallagher's first yellow card was for a foul on Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall near the touchline and he was then dismissed just minutes later for a foul on Barnes after being left hopelessly exposed for a second time as Leicester countered from a Chelsea corner.

The consequences of his latest foul quickly dawned on Gallagher, who looked distraught as he trudged down the tunnel, where he was left to contemplate how to get his fledgling Chelsea career back on track.

Rodgers: We should have taken at least a point

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Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers was pleased with the amount of chances his side created but admitted they need to be more ruthless

Brendan Rodgers was left to rue the host of chances his team squandered, as well as a Barnes goal that was ruled out in the first half for what looked a soft foul on Mendy.

"It was very frustrating not to have taken at least a point from the game," said the Leicester boss. "We started well and looked a threat in the game.

"We're disappointed with the goal that was disallowed. The 'keeper has made a mistake in his timing. It was a great header."

Rodgers continued: "We went to sleep at the beginning of the second half, we were too passive and let them play through too easy.

"Then we didn't press the shot on the edge of the box and if you go behind in a game against 10 men it can be really difficult.

"In fairness to the players, we kept going, the spirit was really good and we had opportunities. There's no doubt we should have taken at least a point."

Fantasy Premier League stats

Chelsea vs Leicester FPL stats

Goals Sterling (2), Barnes
Assists Cucurella, James, Vardy
Bonus points Sterling (3pts), Tielemans (2pts), James (1pt)

Play Fantasy Premier League and see more stats here.

Rodgers unable to stop the rot at Chelsea

  • Brendan Rodgers has faced Chelsea more times in his managerial career than any other opponent (21). However, the Northern Irishman has won just two of those meetings, his lowest win rate against any club he has faced more than twice as a manager in all competitions.
  • Leicester have failed to win any of their opening four games to a Premier League season (D1 L3) for the first time since 2003/04 (D2 L2).
  • Thomas Tuchel has been in charge of 61 Premier League games as Chelsea head coach. The Blues have conceded 35 goals in the most recent 31 of those – more than twice as many as they did in the German’s first 30 league matches in charge (17).
  • Chelsea have won eight Premier League home games when receiving a red card, with Leicester the first side they’ve managed to defeat twice in such a situation (also in August 2003).

What's next?

Chelsea travel to Southampton in the Premier League on Tuesday at St Mary's - kick-off 7.45pm - before hosting West Ham on Sunday September 4, live on Sky Sports - kick-off 2pm.

Live Super Sunday

Leicester will welcome Manchester United to the King Power Stadium on Thursday - kick-off 8pm - before visiting Brighton on Sunday September 4 - kick-off 2pm.

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