BOURNEMOUTH 2-2 CHELSEA
- Goals: Jefferson Lerma (£4.8m), Josh King (£6.1m) | Marcos Alonso (£6.0m) x2
- Assists: Ryan Fraser (£6.8m), Jack Stacey (£4.3m) | Olivier Giroud (£6.5m), Pedro (£6.8m)
- Bonus Points: Alonso x3, King x2, Stacey x1,
Marcos Alonso (£6.0m) was the star of the FPL show at the Vitality Stadium in Blank Gameweek 28, netting a brace in an end-to-end contest between two defensively-suspect outfits.
While Frank Lampard doesn’t like the idea of the left-back being Chelsea’s main goal threat, it is a trait that could attract serious Fantasy investment.
“Marcos Alonso has had a big week but I don’t want my left-back top of the scoring charts. I want our attackers scoring goals and they haven’t. [But] I am really pleased with the way he [Alonso] has come back in. We wanted to win, we should have won but it’s a difficult league. It’s that cut-throat part of the season. If we keep having games like this and we are not clinical, it’s tough. The way the season has panned out, we should be pleased that we are fourth but it means nothing at this stage. If we manage to get in the top four the achievement is huge but we are a long way from that yet.” – Frank Lampard
On using a wing-back system, which clearly plays to Alonso’s strengths, Lampard added:
“It is a system that has worked well this season. It gives us some stability with the three centre-backs.” – Frank Lampard
The Spaniard’s gain was Reece James‘ (£5.0m) loss in the first half, as Olivier Giroud smacked the crossbar from the right wing-back’s cross. Alonso was on hand to volley the ball past a helpless Aaron Ramsdale (£4.6m) for his first goal after 33 minutes.
After a couple of very early chances for Philip Billing (£5.0m), Chelsea dominated until the interval but – much to Lampard’s frustration – failed to fully make their advantage count.
Not long after his opener, Alonso looked set to claim an assist but his header down from a corner was vitally nicked away by Steve Cook (£5.0m) as Cesar Azpilicueta (£5.8m) waited for what would have been a tap-in.
The left wing-back then created a glorious chance for Giroud immediately after the restart, with the Frenchman failing to even test Ramsdale from close range. Another vital Bournemouth block, this time from Jack Stacey (£4.3m), then stopped a Mason Mount (£6.1m) cross reaching Alonso for a simple finish.
The Bournemouth comeback began in the 55th minute as Jefferson Lerma (£4.8m) rose above Mateo Kovacic (£5.3m) and Andreas Christensen (£4.9m) to beat Willy Caballero (£4.8m) with a header from Ryan Fraser‘s (£6.8m) corner.
Three minutes later, Josh King (£6.1m) had the Cherries in front as Stacey – who is essentially keeping Diego Rico (£4.3m) out of Eddie Howe’s XI – got in behind the Chelsea rearguard to square the ball for the Norwegian forward.
The FPL forward was operating from the left wing in Howe’s 4-5-1 formation, something which he does with a grimace:
“I’m still learning playing out wide, I do a job for a team but I want to be in the box and scoring goals.” – Josh King
Giroud’s final action was to head over from another James cross, while his replacement Michy Batshuayi (£6.6m) had the ball in the net immediately on his entry but was correctly flagged offside. The France striker may enjoy further minutes in the coming week, however, as Tammy Abraham (£7.6m) struggles with an ankle injury.
As the rain poured down on the south coast, so did Chelsea attacks on the Bournemouth goal. After a host of near misses in difficult conditions for goalkeepers, Alonso beat Ramsdale with a rebound header after the netminder had saved Pedro‘s (£6.8m) initial effort.
The resurgent Alonso then had a chance to make it four goals in two league appearances but headed wide from an Azpilicueta cross as Bournemouth clung on for a much-neeed point.
Lampard was fairly critical of his side’s inability to extend their lead before Bournemouth turned the game around with two goals in three minutes early in the second half.
“We should win, we had many chances. We had a bad 10-minute spell where they scored and that I don’t like. I’m pleased with the character to get a draw but we should win the game. Against Bayern [Munich] we conceded twice in a short space of time, it’s not the first time. Could it be a lack of concentration? Possibly from the players. People talk about the defence but if you are 1-0 up and leave teams in the game than one set piece can change the game. We should score more goals and then we don’t have that problem.” – Frank Lampard
Howe was more upbeat than his opposite number, probably recognising that the Cherries did well to secure a point amid an attacking onslaught from Chelsea as the game drew to a close in poor conditions.
“It’s a glass half full day, we were 1-0 down and it’s hard to come back against these types of teams. We showed great spriit, we just couldn’t carry on great starts to both halves. We were too deep after the first 20 minutes but I was very pleased with the response. I had no idea from my angle if Josh King was onside or not, you just hope and pray as we were well on top at that point. We need to get points. We have lost some narrow games so hopefully this is a turning point.” – Eddie Howe
Jorginho (£4.9m), who was substituted after 64 minutes as Lampard moved to a more familiar back-four formation, will miss Chelsea’s next two league games after picking up his tenth booking of the campaign.
Bournemouth XI (4-5-1): Ramsdale; A. Smith, Aké, S. Cook, Stacey; King (Stanislas 67′), Billing, Lerma, L. Cook (Gosling 81′), Fraser; C. Wilson.
Chelsea XI (3-4-3): Caballero; Azpilicueta, Christensen, Tomori (Willian 64′); Alonso, Kovacic, Jorginho (Barkley 64′), James; Pedro, Giroud (Batshuayi 72′), Mount.
BLANK GAMEWEEK 28 FPL MATCH REPORTS
- Norwich City 1-0 Leicester City
- Brighton and Hove Albion 0-1 Crystal Palace
- Bournemouth 2-2 Chelsea
- Newcastle United 0-0 Burnley
- West Ham United 3-1 Southampton
- Watford 3-0 Liverpool
- Everton 1-1 Manchester United
- Tottenham Hotspur 2-3 Wolverhampton Wanderers
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