Chelsea

Chelsea silence Mauricio Pochettino's 'defensive' claims with dominant Leicester victory

Tom Gott
Chelsea were superb against Leicester
Chelsea were superb against Leicester / Michael Regan/GettyImages
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Mauricio Pochettino is clearly a busy man these days as he recently revealed that he doesn't actually watch football.

Well, he didn't exactly say that, but he called Chelsea a defensive team and made a specific point of suggesting wing-backs Ben Chilwell and Reece James don't attack. That's basically the same thing.

“Chelsea have a defensive team,” Pochettino said on Friday. “They play in transition and on the counter.”

Erm... no.

Hopefully Pochettino found time on Saturday to watch Chelsea dismantle Leicester, going away from home and absolutely running the show against Brendan Rodgers' side.

62% possession. 16 shots. Three goals. Three more ruled out for offside. From the first whistle to the last, Chelsea were absolutely relentless in their search for goals. Pochettino, like most of the Leicester fans, will have been covering his eyes.

Thomas Tuchel's men were terrifyingly impressive in midfield. They demanded possession, recovering it from Leicester within a matter of seconds, and were always pressing forward. They were so good, in fact, that quiet performances from Mason Mount and Kai Havertz were barely even noticed.

Just because Chelsea are excellent defensively - side note, Thiago Silva is unreal - that doesn't mean they're defensive.

The Blues are ready for opponents to come forward and they never look flustered because Tuchel has them drilled into such a structured system that they do not believe they are going to concede.

Silva and Antonio Rudiger dominated Jamie Vardy on Saturday, just as they have done to nearly every striker before him, while young Trevoh Chalobah continues to look more and more like a top-flight star with each passing week.

It's that spine that gives Chelsea their strength, so Pochettino is not wrong in that regard, but to suggest the Blues rely on their defenders to steer them through games is ludicrous, and the players clearly felt the need to go and prove that at the King Power.

Chelsea won this one because of their endeavour and willingness to play on the front foot. They've won a lot of games like that this season and they'll win a hell of a lot more in that very fashion. This team are incredibly good.

Leciester made it easy for them on Saturday, but make no mistake about it, the same ferocity with which they attacked Kasper Schmeichel's goal is being used to mount a Premier League title push this year.

So far, so good.

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