Ajayi’s West Brom end Tuchel’s unbeaten run at 14


A day after his award as the best manager in the English Premier League (EPL) for leading Chelsea on an unbeaten run, Thomas Tuchel got his first taste of defeat at the hands of basement side, West Bromwich Albion after going 14 matches without losing.

Chelsea lost 5-2 at Stamford Bridge having led 1-0 till two minutes of added-on time in the first half. Christian Pulisic gave the Blues the lead after 27 minutes, pouncing on a rebound off the post from a free-kick by Marcos Alonso. At that point, It looked for all intents and purposes that Tuchel’s side would go on and get the win and keep their unbeaten run going.

All that changed when the returning Thiago Silva was sent off for a second yellow card just two minutes after his side took the lead. Tuchel elected to send on Andreas Christensen to replace Hakim Ziyech and they seemed to have held on until the added-on time when Jorginho gifted West Brom the ball on the edge of the Chelsea box and that mistake was duly punished by Matheus Pereira. Another defensive mix-up two minutes later saw Pereira produce a neat finish to give the Baggies an unlikely lead going into the interval.

Matheus Pereira

Tuchel replaced Pulisic with Mason Mount as Chelsea pushed for an equaliser. Alonso went close but his goal-bound shot was cleared for a corner by Semi Ajayi. A counter in the 63rd minute saw substitute Callum Robinson score West Brom’s third with a great side-footed volley that left Edouard Mendy grasping for thin air.

Five minutes later they got the fourth and it was from another sweeping move that saw Mbaye Diagne sweep the ball in from the edge of the box. Chelsea got the sixth goal of the encounter when Timo Werner laid the ball on a plate for Mount to finish. But it was the 19th-placed side that got the last goal when Robinson chipped the fifth from a Pereira pass in the second minute of additional time.

Matheus Pereira

In two matches in the 2020/21 EPL season, West Brom scored eight goals against Chelsea and took four points off the Champions League-chasing side. Chelsea stay in fourth place before West Ham, Tottenham, Everton, and Liverpool play their matchday 30 fixtures while West Brom are still seven points from safety.

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