Southampton 1-4 Chelsea: Tammy Abraham on target as Blues sink Saints
Report and highlights as N'Golo Kante, Michy Batshuayi also find target
By Frederick Clayton
Last Updated: 06/10/19 10:48pm
Tammy Abraham and Mason Mount helped Chelsea to a comfortable 4-1 win over Southampton at St Mary's.
Abraham's lob opened the scoring after 17 minutes before Mount doubled Chelsea's lead with a close-range strike. Danny Ings' tap-in pulled one back for Southampton but N'Golo Kante restored the visitors' two-goal lead before half-time with a long-range deflected strike.
Callum Hudson-Odoi was denied a goal on his first Premier league start by the legs of Angus Gunn, but Chelsea coasted through a second half in which Saints offered little going forward.
Southampton: Gunn (6), Bertrand (5), Bednarek (6), Yoshida (6), Valery (7), Hojbjerg (5), Romeu (5), Ward-Prowse (6), Redmond (6), Ings (7), Long (5)
Subs: Adams (n/a), Boufal (5), Obafemi (n/a)
Chelsea: Arrizabalaga (6), Alonso (7), Zouma (7), Tomori (7), Azpilicueta (6), Kante (7), Jorginho (7), Mount (7), Hudson-Odoi (7), Willian (8), Abraham (8)
Subs: Kovacic (6), Pulisic (7), Batshuayi (7)
Man of the match: Tammy Abraham
Substitute Michy Batshuayi added some gloss to the victory minutes from time, as Chelsea flew up the table into fifth place.
How Chelsea youngsters starred again
Saints' press troubled Chelsea from the off but it was the Blues who made the breakthrough when Hudson-Odoi played in Abraham, whose lob was deemed over the line by goal-line technology despite the best efforts of Maya Yoshida.
Mount doubled their lead after some fine one-touch passing by Jorginho and Willian, but Ings pulled one back minutes later when Yan Valery squeezed his way into the box and pulled back for a tap-in.
Saints made two changes to the side that lost to Tottenham last week as Shane Long made his first Premier League start of the season in place of Boufal, and Vestergaard made way for Valery at the back. Hudson-Odoi made his first Premier League start, replacing James in the side that beat Lille in midweek.
Marcos Alonso turned provider for the next, finding Kante in the middle of the park for the Frenchman to lash home via a heavy deflection, but Saints almost had another back but for Jorginho's goal-line clearance that denied Ings a second.
Hudson-Odoi almost grabbed a dream goal to add to his assist, but was denied by the left leg of Gunn when played through on goal as Chelsea looked to put the game to bed.
Abraham was then denied by Gunn as Chelsea coasted through a second half in which Saints offered little in attack, going close only when James Ward-Prowse's free-kick flew over the bar from just outside the box.
And Batshuayi eventually found the killer goal, playing a smart one-two with fellow substitute Christian Pulisic before slotting through the legs of Gunn.
What the managers said
Southampton's Ralph Hasenhuttl: "I think, like always this season, the first chance is a goal against us in a moment that doesn't help us massively to perform better. You can lose against such a strong side, this is OK, when you lose, but what I was really disappointed about was the mistakes we made in the first half. If you invite them to score you don't have to wonder that they do it.
"We must be very, very honest and true to ourselves because otherwise we will lie to ourselves and say we are better than what we played. At the moment, we are not better."
Chelsea's Frank Lampard: "The last international break we went into on the back of dropping two points against Sheffield United, which we had to take our own responsibility for, but today was the opposite.
"We were in pretty good form and I wanted to finish strong. That was the team talk to the players and they carried it out. It was a relatively tough afternoon in the end at a tough place to come if you're not at it. I thought our performance was very good."
Analysis: Abraham sucker-punch gave Chelsea edge
Sky Sports' Frederick Clayton...
Chelsea's affectionately named class of 2019/20 will steal the headlines, again vindicating Lampard's faith in youth with match-winning performances between them. Abraham, Mount and Hudson-Odoi each had a hand in goals.
The Blues are an exciting team to watch, not least because of the new faces on show, and it's a credit to their performances so far that the likes of big-budget Pulisic can only make the bench.
Saints really needed an early goal to reward their adventurous and aggressive pressing game, but they were sucker-punched by Abraham's opener from nowhere, and left themselves open to the counter while they desperately hunted an equaliser.
The score-line flatters Chelsea who were simply clinical in attack. Abraham's goal gave the Blues a platform and but for a few minutes after Ings' equaliser, they coasted to victory. Ings, though, once again showed his quality with a fine finish and should've had a second. He will score plenty of goals for Saints this season if only he can stay fit.
- Southampton have lost three consecutive Premier League game for the first time since October 2018, under Mark Hughes.
- Chelsea have won each of their last four games in all competitions, equalling the longest win streak of Frank Lampard's managerial career to date (four games in August-September 2018 with Derby).
- This was Southampton's heaviest defeat in a home Premier League game under Ralph Hasenhüttl. Indeed, the last time they lost by 3+ goals in a home game in the competition was also against Chelsea (0-3 in October 2018).
Man of the match: Tammy Abraham
An eighth Premier League goal of the season for Abraham puts him level at the top of the scoring charts with Sergio Aguero. A wonderful finish opened the scoring when Saints were on top, and his quick feet caused chaos.
Southampton travel to Wolves after the international break on October 19; kick-off at 3pm. Chelsea host Newcastle, also on October 19; kick-off at 3pm.