Chelsea vs Southampton three lessons learnt: Another shootout win

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LONDON, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 26: Callum Hudson-Odoi of Chelsea battles for possession with Kyle Walker-Peters of Southampton during the Carabao Cup Round of 16 match between Chelsea and Southampton at Stamford Bridge on October 26, 2021 in London, England. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Chelsea is into the last eight of Carabao Cup after winning 4-3 on penalties against Southampton. Similar to last round against Aston Villa, the Blues scored the first goal and then conceded shortly after, which led to both teams looking for a second goal that never came. Another penalty shootout awaited with Chelsea coming out the victor after Reece James scored the side’s fifth penalty.

This game was seemingly a carbon copy of the last round with the Blues having loads of chances and only scoring one goal. It also ended in the same way, as well. Thomas Tuchel made a lot of changes from the Norwich victory, some could say too many, with players playing out of position. This led to a pretty lackluster first half aside from Kai Havertz’s 44′ header. The issues with the line up will be addressed further later on, but all that really mattered on the day was making it into the next round of the EFL Cup, taking the Blues one step closer to another trophy.

Here are three lessons we learnt from the contest:

1: Callum Hudson-Odoi is wasted at right wingback

The starting line-up saw a lot of rotation, both to give players a rest and also to give minutes to those who don’t play often. Supporters saw a few players playing out of their most preferred positions. Cesar Azpilicueta was given a rest and with James filling in for the captain at right centerback, Callum Hudson-Odoi was the only player who could fill in at wingback. We really saw what Hudson-Odoi was capable of in a front three against Norwich, so with him playing in a move defensive role, he was wasted. Both Ross Barkley and Hakim Ziyech were brought in and throughout the first half, fans really saw what they were missing without Hudson-Odoi and Mason Mount up front.

Barkley and Ziyech are too slow for the liking of many, especially for an attack that scored 11 in its last two games and looked completely different with several absences. When both Ben Chilwell and Mount came on, Hudson-Odoi joined the front three and instantly, the attack looked more dangerous. Romelu Lukaku and Timo Werner are out more the next couple of games, so here’s to hoping Hudson-Odoi can continue to prove that he should remain a part of the attack, rather than playing as a wingback.

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