Joao Felix Bags Red Card on His Chelsea Debut As Fulham Wins West London Derby

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Joao Felix bags a red card on his Chelsea debut as Blues’ Premier League struggle continues with a 2-1 loss to Fulham at Craven Cottage.

Chelsea

Starting Lineup

Fulham: Bernd Leno; Kenny Tete, Tosin Adarabioyo, Tim Ream, Antonee Robinson; Harrison Reed, Joao Palhinha; Bobby De Cordova-Reid, Andreas Pereira, Willian; Carlos Vinicius.

Chelsea: Kepa Arrizabalaga; Trevoh Chalobah, Thiago Silva, Kalidou Koulibaly; Cesar Azpilicueta, Denis Zakaria, Mateo Kovacic, Lewis Hall; Mason Mount, Joao Felix; Kai Havertz.

Chelsea dominated proceedings as the first half of the game began, with Joao Felix making his debut for the Blues.

The Atletico Madrid star indeed provided an attacking momentum for the Blues. He created Chelsea’s first clear chance in the game.

Charging down the far left Joao Felix nutmegged Fulham’s defender and cut into the box and sent in a pass. Havertz struck at the goal but the ball was blocked by the Fulham goalkeeper Leno.

Chelsea

In most parts of the game, Chelsea dominated play. In the middle of the park, Fulham’s Andreas Pereira frequently comes into collisions with Zakaria and the Blues completed more passes in Fulham’s half and were the better side going forward.

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When in possession of the ball, Marco Silva’s men depended on quick counters to threaten the visitors.

At the back of the Chelsea defense Thiago Silva and Kalidou Koulibaly were doing the needful but a 23rd-minute blunder by the Chelsea defense nearly gave the home side the lead, with Fulham hitting the crossbar.

Chelsea

A minute later, Chelsea was hit after Willian their former player had his shot deflected off Charlobah’s leg and looped into the net.

Fulham took a surprise lead, although playing second fiddle to a more creative and quality Chelsea side.

The Blues played their hearts out, but were still jittery with a series of individual mistakes that allowed Fulham to have some level of control of the game.

After trailing the host by a lone goal, Chelsea ramped up attempts to find an equalizer. The Blues nearly scored the equalizer when Havertz’s strike deflects off the leg of Fulham’s defender towards the goal, but Leno was quick to punch it off for a corner kick.

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The Premier League giants were making frantic attempts to find an equalizer but no breakthrough with the first half far spent.

Chelsea

Graham Potter cut a frustrated figure on the technical area as the team looked more clueless than clinical upfront.

Despite going a goal up, Fulham maintained their normal attacking pace and were dangerous going forward.

Collective defending against an attack by Fulham allows the host to successfully hold onto their narrow 1-0 lead through the first half.

Graham Potter needed to do more to breath life into the Blues’ attacking prowess. They dominated play but were largely clueless and wasteful in Fulham’s box while pockets of individual error worked to the advantage of the hosts.

Chelsea

Just 2 minutes into the second half, Chelsea earned a deserve equaliser with Kalidou Koulibaly scoring for the Blues to level the scores, after he volleyed home a 46th-minute set piece which hit the post.

The Senegal international raced pass Fulham defenders to volley home the rebound.

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After the equaliser, the Blues come-back hopes was dealt a significant blow with Joao Felix sent off on his Chelsea debut for a high challenge on Kenny Tete.

Chelsea

The Blues were now reduced to 10-men and face a uphill task to come through against hard-fighting Fulham at Craven Cottage.

Fulham effectively galvanized on their one-man advantage to press for another goal. In the 72nd minute, Vinicius’s brilliant header from Andreas Pereira’s cross returned Fulham to the lead.

Fulham continued to hold sway over the game with a man advantage, and successfully defended the 2-1 lead to secure all three points against struggling Chelsea.

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