Goal-shy On Monday, Chelsea finally found their cutting edge, scoring twice in the first 82 seconds of their match against Fulham to secure a morale-boosting 2-0 victory. Mykhailo Mudryk finally got on the scoresheet in the match.
The injury-plagued squad managed by Mauricio Pochettino headed to the home of their close neighbours with just five goals to their credit and only two points that separated them from the relegation zone.
However, in the 18th minute, Ukrainian winger Mudryk scored his first goal in a Chelsea jersey, and in the blink of an eye, Armando Broja extended the advantage to put Chelsea up 2-0. Early chances that were wasted hinted at recurring failures.
The victory moves Chelsea up to the middle of the standings and relieves some of the stress placed on embattled new manager Mauricio Pochettino, whose club had gone without scoring in each of their previous three Premier League matches.
The former manager of Tottenham and Paris Saint-Germain was relieved when his side scored twice in a matter of minutes in the first half. He had urged with his players to be more ruthless in front of the goal.
Pochettino said Sky Sports, “It’s important for us to build our confidence and trust in ourselves.” “It’s important for us to build our confidence and trust in ourselves.”
“The performance was very good, and I’m so happy for the players and the team as a whole that in the end we got what we deserved.”
A promising beginning
At Craven Cottage, Chelsea got off to a strong start but was unable to capitalise on their opportunities.
Soon after the game began, the Albanian attacker Broja, who was making his first start since November 2022, fired a shot over the crossbar from an offside position, and the energetic Mudryk also missed an opportunity.
However, it wasn’t until the 18th minute that the away team finally received their reward when a long ball sent from the defence reached Levi Colwill in the left side of the pitch.
After receiving a pass from Colwill, Mudryk was able to control the ball on his chest before finishing it off in a collected manner to score his first goal for the club since his high-dollar transfer from Shakhtar Donetsk in January. Colwill’s assist set up Mudryk’s goal.
When Chelsea center-back Tim Ream made a defensive error and surrendered the ball to Fulham’s newest player, Cole Palmer, it allowed Broja to capitalise and extend Chelsea’s advantage to a two-goal margin.
After playing the ball forward, the former Manchester City player allowed Ream to kick it against Broja, and then he watched in terror as the ball bounced into the goal.
Chelsea, who were playing with verve, had the opportunity to expand their advantage further, but Enzo Fernandez’s effort went just wide of the post.
During the first half, the home team did not manage to generate a single shot on goal, although Raul Jimenez came near with a header from an outswinging corner taken by Andreas Pereira just before the break.
Mudryk was replaced by defender Ian Maatsen at the start of the second half. Mudryk did not return for the second half.
After the halftime break, Fulham seemed to pose a greater danger, and manager Marco Silva sent on strikers Alex Iwobi and Carlos Vinicius inside the opening ten minutes of the second half.
Before a heart-in-mouth moment for Chelsea custodian Robert Sanchez, who was able to regain the ball after his goal kick was intercepted by Pereira, Vinicius was able to get a shot off that went over the crossbar.
Maatsen’s thunderous effort against the left post was an agonisingly near call for Chelsea, but Fulham keeper Bernd Leno made a good save from Fernandez’s follow-up attempt. Chelsea came agonisingly close to increasing their advantage.
Tom Cairney’s pass to fellow substitute Sasa Lukic in the six-yard box presented Fulham with a golden opportunity to cut the deficit to one goal, but Lukic could only shoot directly at Sanchez. Sanchez made the save.
The rather comfortable hold that Chelsea maintained allowed them to move up to 11th position, moving them above of Fulham on the goal differential.