Chelsea VS Brentford Final – LIVE Reddit Soccer 16/10/2021
Seven games into their Premier League debut and Brentford are living the dream – with just one defeat and a growing number of surprise scalps. Chelsea make the short hop across west London on Saturday for a tantalising, and fairly rare, derby. With Liverpool playing earlier in the day, a win may be necessary to grab back first place. Not since 1947 have these two teams met in a league fixture with the Bees’ latest win over the Blues coming even further back, some 82 years ago. But the newly-promoted team’s strong start could give them the confidence to claim a famous win against Thomas Tuchel’s title challengers.
Toni Rudiger has been ruled out with a back injury, compounding Chelsea’s defensive concerns. Tuchel was already without Thiago Silva, who does not arrive back from international duty with Brazil in time for the game. Better news for the European champions is Romelu Lukaku’s availability after being sent home early by Belgium with muscle fatigue. But Chelsea’s attacking options have also been limited by the absence of Hakim Ziyech, who has not been able to take part in their last two training sessions due to a headache, and Christian Pulisic, who is still to recover from an ankle injury.
Seeking to establish themselves as Premier League mainstays during the first few weeks of the season, Brentford’s success story is earning a few more chapters, with the Bees following up their pulsating 3-3 draw with Liverpool with a 2-1 win at Europa League side West Ham earlier this month.
Jarrod Bowen’s 80th-minute strike appeared to have rescued a point for West Ham following Bryan Mbeumo’s opener in the first half, but lightning struck twice for substitute Yoane Wissa, who netted with virtually the last kick of the game to propel the Bees to another top-flight win.
Brentford’s stellar start to the season is showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon, and having taken seven points from their last three games, Thomas Frank’s side have risen to seventh in the table – above the likes of Leicester City, Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur.
The hosts’ only defeat so far this season did come on home soil, though – 1-0 against another surprise package in Brighton & Hove Albion – but having beaten Arsenal and drawn with Liverpool on their own patch, Chelsea can hardly travel across the capital expecting a routine three points.
In addition to their wins over Arsenal and West Ham, Brentford’s goalless draw with Crystal Palace means that they have earned a place in the Premier League history books as the first side to go unbeaten in their first three London derbies in the competition.
After back-to-back 1-0 defeats to Manchester City and Juventus to round off an otherwise successful September, Chelsea turned on the style to comfortably see off Southampton and head into the international break with something to build on.
Trevoh Chalobah once again justified his starting place with the opening goal in the ninth minute of the encounter, before James Ward-Prowse’s penalty made things interesting, but Timo Werner and Ben Chilwell bagged two quickfire late goals to sink the Saints.
With Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Everton all playing out draws in gameweek seven, Chelsea’s comfortable win over Southampton has seen them surge to the top of the rankings with 16 points taken from a possible 21 so far this term.
Desperate to add a top-flight title to his European crown at Stamford Bridge, Tuchel’s renowned staunch defence has conceded a joint-low three league goals this term – level with champions Man City – and the German coach has lost just one of his 12 away games in the Premier League since taking over at Chelsea.
Not since the 1938-39 season have Brentford prevailed against Chelsea in any competition, with the Blues marching to successive 4-0 FA Cup wins in the 2012-13 and 2016-17 seasons, although the victory in the former season came during a replay after an initial 2-2 draw.