Chelsea 1-0 Southampton: 5 Talking Points
Chelsea made it five league wins in a row as they edged past Southampton 1-0 at Stamford Bridge on Saturday. Marcos Alonso bagged the all-important goal through a direct freekick just ahead of the halftime whistle.
In the second half, Alvaro Morata returned from injury and had a few chances to get his name on the scoresheet but was denied by the Southampton defenders. The Saints, on the other hand, saw their chances come and go as eventually, they fell short against the defending champions.
#5 Maya Yoshida caps off a fantastic defensive display for the Saints
Mauricio Pellegrino has been criticised of late for approaching games naively, but, he seemed to have his tactics spot on against Chelsea. Saints centre-back Maya Yoshida was tasked to keep Eden Hazard at bay, and despite being drawn out of position time and again due to the Belgian's movement, Yoshida still managed to provide cover at the back and ensured that the Blues couldn't score from open play.
Starting alongside Wesley Hoedt, the Japanese centre-back looked an assured figure on the ball and made key tackles to keep the Chelsea front men at bay. In the second period, he gave Willian a tough time in getting past him as he was always lurking on the back of the Brazilian hoping for him to give the ball away.
According to WhoScored, Yoshida made the most tackles (3) of any Southampton player on the day and also made a game-high five clearances. Wouldn't it have been for his exploits, Chelsea could have easily racked up three to four goals.