Chelsea kicked off their Premier League campaign with a lacklustre victory against an impressive Brighton side at the Amex Stadium earlier today. The Blues were far below their best and pipped the home side to a 3-1 victory with Jorginho, Reece James, and Kurt Zouma getting on to the scoresheet.
Chelsea will do well to acknowledge the fact that the flattering scoreline managed to hide some of the Blues' deficiencies against Brighton. Timo Werner and Kai Havertz showed glimpses of their abilities but will need more time to adapt to Frank Lampard's methods and ideas.
Chelsea edged Brighton to an important victory despite a few struggles
Brighton started the game brightly and troubled Chelsea on a few occasions in the opening stages but were unable to create clear-cut chances. The home side undid all its good work in one fell swoop as a suicidal error from Steve Alzate allowed Timo Werner to pounce on the ball and resulted in a penalty for Chelsea.
Jorginho stepped up to the plate and calmly slotted the ball into the bottom corner to give Chelsea the lead. Maupay had a chance to equalise at the other end but was unable to make the most of an excellent Lamptey cross.
Steve Alzate tried to make up for his mistake and drove into Chelsea's half, forcing Kep Arrizabalaga into his first save. Chelsea continued to threaten on the counter but did not see much of the ball in the first half.
Brighton made an excellent start to the second half and finally got their reward when Leandro Trossard's long-range effort slipped under Kepa Arrizabalaga's reach and put the home side on level terms. Brighton's joy was short-lived, however, as Reece James scored a magnificent goal less than two minutes later to restore Chelsea's lead.
The home side had yet another chance to equalise but Lewis Dunk failed to make contact with an excellent cross. Chelsea sprinkled further salt into Brighton's wounds a few minutes later when a massive deflection from Adam Webster gave Kurt Zouma his goal.
Despite the scoreline, Brighton gave a good account of themselves today and can take several positives away from this game. Chelsea looked sharp on occasion but will have to be far more consistent to meet their objectives this season.
Brighton Player Ratings
Mathew Ryan - 6/10
Mathew Ryan gave away a penalty early in the game but could do very little to prevent Chelsea's second and third goals. The shot-stopper was unfortunate to be at the receiving end of a three-goal defeat and will hope to find better luck in his next game.
Adam Webster - 6/10
Adam Webster did not look comfortable against Timo Werner's pace and was often caught out of position on the break. The centre-back deflected the ball past a stranded Mathew Ryan to give Chelsea their third goal.
Lewis Dunk - 6.5/10
Lewis Dunk put in an assured performance in Brighton's defence and made several important blocks throughout the game. The defender should have equalised for Brighton in the second half but inexplicably failed to make contact with the ball in Chelsea's penalty area.
Ben White - 6.5/10
Ben White did well to repel Chelsea's pacy forwards today and was replaced by Pascal Gross late in the game as Brighton transitioned into a traditional 4-4-2 setup.
Solomon March - 7/10
Solomon March gave Chelsea full-back Reece James plenty of problems down the left flank and used his dribbling prowess to create several chances for Brighton. The wing-back had an excellent game and was unfortunate to be on the losing side.
Tariq Lamptey - 7.5/10
Tariq Lamptey was arguably the best player on the pitch and put in an inspired performance against his former club. The right-back tormented Marcos Alonso and picked up a well-deserved assist against a Chelsea side that struggled to contain the sheer pace of the young talent.
Yves Bissouma - 6.5/10
Yves Bissouma used his physicality and presence to dominate the middle of the pitch for Brighton and played a pivotal role in ensuring that the home side controlled the game. The midfielder also drove forward on a few occasions and will be pleased with his performance.
Steven Alzate - 6/10
Steven Alzate started the game well but made a horrible error in the midfield and gifted Chelsea their penalty for the opening goal. The midfielder did play well for the rest of the game but his error cost his side the initiative against Chelsea.
Adam Lallana - 6.5/10
Adam Lallana looked back to his best in the first 45 minutes and played some delightful passes to Neal Maupay and Leandro Trossard as Chelsea struggled to get on to the ball. The former Liverpool man had to be taken off before half-time, however, and the fresh injury concerns are worrying signs.
Neal Maupay - 5.5/10
Neal Maupay did not enjoy the best of nights against Chelsea and was unable to make a meaningful contribution to Brighton's attacking play. The striker did have a few chances in the final third but failed to convert them and will be disappointed with his performance.
Leandro Trossard - 7/10
Leandro Trossard was relatively quiet in the first half but burst on to the scene after half-time and scored an excellent goal to level the playing field for Brighton. The forward transitioned into a creative role after his goal and regularly dropped into the midfield to influence the game.
Aaron Connolly - 5.5/10
Aaron Connolly played the second half in place of Adam Lallana and did not play a significant part in the game. The Irish forward showed plenty of initiative with his runs but did not trouble Chelsea's defence.
Pascal Gross - 6/10
Pascal Gross was brought on to the pitch in the second half to give Brighton a creative outlet but the midfielder failed to make much of an impact on the game.
Alireza Jahanbakhsh - 5.5/10
Alireza Jahanbakhsh came on to the pitch late in the second half and did not have enough time to find his feet against Chelsea.