Match Reports

Historic point secured at Stamford Bridge

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Albion move seven points clear of the bottom three with a big point secured at Chelsea.

By Luke Nicoli • 20 April 2021

By Paul Hazlewood
Adam Lallana curled an effort just wide of the bottom left corner.
  • Chelsea 0, Albion 0

Albion picked up their first ever point at Stamford Bridge as another important step towards Premier League safety was taken.

Graham Potter's men showed defensive discipline when called upon and could well have emerged with all three points having carved out three excellent opportunities in the second period. However, it was a job well done by the Seagulls who now move on to 34 points with six games left to play.

What happened...

With the game delayed by 15 minutes, in light of the European Super League protests taking place outside of the ground, it proved to be a more low-key opening on the pitch.

By Paul Hazlewood
Adam Webster was back in the side after a two-and-a-half month lay-off through injury.

There was little in terms of early goalmouth action as both sides enjoyed their fair share of possession, yet as the half wore on, the hosts began to up the tempo. Christian Pulisic should have done better as the Blues pounced on a misplaced pass by the returning Adam Webster, while more loose play from the Albion rearguard resulted in a Kai Havertz shot well beaten out by Seagulls keeper Robert Sanchez.

Albion's first attempt at goal came in the 36th minute when a Pascal Gross free-kick eventually fell at the feet of Leandro Trossard, but the Belgian's curling 20-yard effort failed to trouble Kepa in the Blues' goal.

The visitors began to get more of a foothold in the game and a fine passing move involving Alexis Mac Allister and Joel Veltman resulted in a deflected Yves Bissouma effort looping up onto the roof of the net.

Chelsea regained control of the game as the second half got underway with man-of-the-match Ben White putting in important blocks on Hakim Ziyech and Pulisic.

Albion, however, remained solid in their defensive work and brought on the experience of Adam Lallana on the hour mark to help galvanise the side’s forward forays.

It had the desired effect as Bissouma tried his luck with a 25-yard free-kick which was deflected wide for a corner and he followed up with another effort from distance as the clock ticked past 70 minutes.

The Seagulls had a golden opportunity to take the lead when sub Neal Maupay dispossessed Kurt Zouma. The ball fell into the path of Lallana but his left-foot effort fell the wrong side of Kepa’s right-hand upright.

By Paul Hazlewood
Robert Sanchez kept his ninth Premier League clean sheet in the 0-0 draw with Chelsea.

Albion then pounced on another mistake in the Blues defence when Lallana this time dispossessed Jorginho. Welbeck picked up the loose ball but his curling effort from the edge of the box came back off Kepa’s opposite post. Lallana had another opportunity from close range moments later but his effort was well held by the Chelsea keeper.

There was a concern the Seagulls would rue those missed chances and hearts were certainly in mouths five minutes from time when sub Olivier Giroud went close. White was also sent off as the game entered injury-time for a second yellow card but Albion saw the game out with a trip to Sheffield United to come on Saturday night.

Line-up

Albion: Sanchez, White, Dunk, Webster, Veltman, Bissouma, Mac Allister (Maupay 74), Gross, Burn, Trossard (Lallana 60), Welbeck (Moder 86). Subs not used: Jahanbakhsh, Alzate, Izquierdo, Steele, Propper, Zeqiri

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