Sheffield United 2-2 Chelsea: 3 Blues who let the side down

Chelsea traveled to Bramall Lane to take on Championship-bound Sheffield United fresh from the high of the late comeback win against Manchester United. Mauricio Pochettino’s men were brought back down to earth very quickly. 
Chelsea v Liverpool - Carabao Cup Final
Chelsea v Liverpool - Carabao Cup Final / Visionhaus/GettyImages

Chelsea failed to create up to one expected goal (xG) against 20th placed Sheffield on Sunday (0.37). The overall performance was so poor that it seems unfair to single out a few people for this article. Here are three Blues players that let the side down:

Enzo Fernandez

Fernandez had a performance on par with his stinker against Liverpool at Anfield. He was as horrendous at distributing the ball as he was at defending against the bottom-placed side. Fernandez only managed to complete 80% of his attempted passes, which is unacceptable for a player whose strength is supposed to be on the ball. 

He was also careless in possession, losing the ball an outrageous 24 times, more than anyone else on the pitch. His chance creation cannot be used to explain away the ball losses either, as he only gathered 0.07 expected assists (xA) from 75 completed passes, and created zero big chances. 

His defending was much worse, as he won 0/5 contested ground duels. He also attempted just one tackle, indicating that he was never close enough to the action to even make tackles regularly enough. 

Marc Cucurella

Cucurella’s ineffectiveness is highlighted by how easily Sheffield penetrated Chelsea from both flanks. When the ball got into threatening positions against the Blues, Pochettino’s men, especially the wide men, were useless to stop them. Cucurella won just 3/9 duels, including 3/7 ground duels. He completed only 1/3 tackles he attempted too. 

Axel Disasi

Disasi was also guilty of not doing enough to stop Sheffield United from attacking Chelsea down the flanks. His distribution was average, and his defending was poor. At only 1/5 of his duels won, he recorded the worst duel success rate of any Chelsea player on the pitch against Sheffield United. 

In conclusion, there were several players who played active roles in Chelsea's inability to beat bottom-placed Sheffield, the highlighted ones are on this list because they’re senior players and fans should expect more from them. The fact that these horrendous performances came against Sheffield, makes it that much worse.