Chelsea saw off Lille in northern France on Wednesday night, picking up their first win of their Champions League return thanks to a late Willian winner.
The Blues started much the better team, and they capitalised on their early pressure when Tammy Abraham opened the scoring with a fine finish after a wonderful pass from young defender Fikayo Tomori.
However, completely against the run of play, in-form striker Victor Osimhen headed home just ten minutes later from a corner after poor marking from the Chelsea defence.
This seemed to spark the French side into life, and they began to gain momentum and get themselves right into the game – keeping the London side honest for the majority of the next 45 minutes.
Both teams continued to create chances, but Chelsea restored their lead late in the gameafter some great work from substitute Callum Hudson-Odoi to set up Willian to volley home.
In the end, Blues fans can be pleased with a hugely important win to kick start their European campaign, and Frank Lampard will be delighted with his players.
Key Talking Point
Lille have had a good start to their league campaign, as they currently sit in fourth place in Ligue 1 - four points off top spot. However, in a group where there is no real stand-out team, they would have been eyeing a place in the Champions League knockout stages.
The French side impressed offensively, but defensively they looked poor – something that may get away with domestically, but not in Europe.
This proved to be the case, and this loss will be a major hammer blow to their chances of qualification.
Starting XI: Maignan (6); Gabriel (5), Fonte (6), Mandava (6), Celik (5); Soumare (7), Andre (6); Araujo (6), Ikone (6), Bamba (7), Osimhen (8*)
Subs: Yazici (6), Sanches (6), Xeka (6)
It has to be that man Osmihen. The striker has started the season on fire, and put in another fantastic display up front.
As well as scoring, his all-round play was exceptional, and he showcased ability outside of just putting the ball in the back of the net. A really great performance.
Key Talking Point
A loss at home to start their European challenge was certainly not a good way to begin, and Lampard would have been demanding a reaction from his players.
He got one. Despite looking frail at the back, Chelsea showed a lot of quality in the final third, and the Englishman will be over the moon with that.
However, if they are to go on a run in this competition, they will need to find a way to shore up their defence...and yes, on another note, the absence of Christian Pulisic from the matchday squad has been noted.
Starting XI: Kepa (6); Tomori (8*), Azpilicueta (6), Zouma (5); James (7), Kante (6), Jorginho (6), Alonso (6); Willian (7), Abraham (7), Mount (6)
Subs: Hudson-Odoi (7), Pedro (N/A), Kovacic (N/A)
Tomori has been a revelation since coming into the side, and his performance on Wednesday night showcased that.
He looked the most experienced of the Blues' centre-backs, remaining composed and solid at the back in addition to his wonderful pass to Abraham for the opening goal. Lampard will be delighted with his progress, with Andres Christensen and Antonio Rudiger now wondering if one of them will lose their presumptive spots when the German is fit.
Tomori is a gem.— 48th Ronin 💨 (@EruditeBeing) October 2, 2019
Tomori > Van dijk tbh— 🌚 (@Son21cfcv2) October 2, 2019
Chelsea have a Premier League clash at Southampton to come, which could be the perfect game for the Blues. Southampton struggle for goals, so won't test Chelsea's iffy defence much.
Lille host Nimes in Ligue 1 next, a game they will expect to win. Their form in the league is good, and despite this Wednesday night loss, they should still have more than enough quality to take home the three points.