Chelsea and Fulham played out to a 0-0 draw on Friday. Despite the scoreline, the west London derby would turn out to be a fairly entertaining match. Nevertheless, the disappointing draw at home by Chelsea prevented them from making major moves in the Premier League standings.
Much of the pregame talk surrounded Chelsea’s record transfer spending. The Blues have a net spend of nearly $600 million this season, which included massive deals for Enzo Fernandez, a record Premier League fee, and Mykhailo Mudryk. The dynamic duo cost around a combined $233 million. Both of the stars would get their first starts for the club on Friday.
The opening half an hour of the game was fairly even. Although Chelsea had significantly more possession during the timeframe, Fulham had more shots and the better opportunity to score. Andreas Pereira came the closest to scoring in the opening third of the match with an excellent shot from distance. Kepa Arrizabalaga, however, made a diving save to his right hand side.
Havertz hits post a minute before halftime
Kai Havertz then hit the post just moments prior to the halftime break. The center forward broke free from the Fulham defense and looped a shot over Bernd Leno. Although the German looked offside at first, the assistant got the call right to keep his flag down. Nevertheless, the visitors cleared the ball away and the game went to the break scoreless.
Chelsea entered the match with just three goals in their last six total matches. Despite the new arrivals, the hosts still struggled to produce fire power going forward. In fact, Chelsea managed just seven touches inside Fulham’s penalty area in the first 65 minutes of the match. They also recorded just one shot on goal in the opening 75 minutes as well.
Ream saves draw for Fulham at Chelsea
David Datro Fofana, another new signing for the Blues, nearly put his team ahead in the 79th minute. Leno left his goal wide open after rushing out and Fofana put in a shot towards a wide open net. However, USMNT defender Tim Ream smartly cleared the ball to keep the scoreline level.
The draw means that Chelsea leapfrog Liverpool up to ninth in the table. But the Blues have played two more matches than the Merseyside club. The point for the visitors also moves them passed Brighton to sixth in the table. However, Fulham have now played three more fixtures than the seventh-placed Seagulls.
PHOTO: IMAGO / Sportimage
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