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5 things spotted in Chelsea vs Crystal palace match

Pulisic’s new celebration, Abraham’s packed bags: 5 things spotted in Chelsea vs Crystal Palace
The Blues started their Premier League campaign with a 3-0 victory over Crystal Palace at Stamford Bridge

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Tuchel pleased for Chalobah after first Chelsea goal

TUCHEL PLEASED FOR CHALOBAH AFTER FIRST CHELSEA GOAL
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Three goals. A clean sheet. And three points. Chelsea couldn’t have got their 2021/22 Premier League off to a better start.

Going into the game, there were several concerns for Thomas Tuchel. Not only had his side played 120 minutes of football on Wednesday to win the Super Cup, but new club-record signing Romelu Lukaku was unavailable while Hakim Ziyech and N’Golo Kante were both absent due to injury.

No matter. Chelsea were two goals ahead by the half-time interval after Marcos Alonso and Christian Pulisic found the net. In the second period, Trevoh Chalobah fired home from distance to mark his Premier League debut in style.

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So, the title challenge is underway? Well, Thomas Tuchel isn’t going down that route. Not at the moment at least.

In pictures: Chelsea v Crystal Palace
Some of the best images from the Premier League match between Chelsea and Crystal Palace.

IN PICTURES: CHELSEA V CRYSTAL PALACE
“This is the toughest league in the world to win and there are three teams [Manchester City, Manchester United and Liverpool] who did better than us last season,” he explained. “Now it is on us to keep calm, work hard and reach our highest level on a permanent base.

“If you ask all four teams they will admit they will try their very best to win the Premier League, all four are well aware, though, there are five, six, seven, eight teams that are pushing and pushing.

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“You can’t plan it. It doesn’t help to talk about it. I feel genuinely we have to hunt the others from day one. This is the mentality with which we want to play. We are never shy to fight for the best outcome possible. But the reality is we cannot be the favourites right now.”

Tuchel may try to play it down but if Chelsea can make a strong start, expectation will grow among the supporters, who packed out Stamford Bridge for the first time in 16 months.

They were treated to a fine display from the Blues. And here are five things we spotted in the 3-0 victory yesterday.

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The Chelsea head coach has set the highest of standards since replacing Frank Lampard at Stamford Bridge in January.

He has already delivered the Champions League and this week added the Super Cup to the Blues’ already stacked trophy case.

Tuchel demands the very best from his side. Always. It’s why he becomes so agitated on the touchline when he believes that isn’t being delivered.

Throughout the opening period against Palace, Tuchel’s frustration got the better of him. No more so than when Pulisic slowed down a promising attack.

The USMNT star received a pass from Mason Mount but instead of driving forward, he turned backwards and ended up conceding a foul.

Chelsea head Thomas Tuchel (Image: Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)
Tuchel wasn’t happy. He flung his arms into the arm, momentarily berated Pulisic before turning back to his coaching team and complaining.

Fortunately, Pulisic got on the scoresheet just before the interval so by the time the Chelsea players got into the dressing room, all was almost certainly forgiven.

Mount gives Ayew his approval

Mason Mount is an infectious character; there is very rarely an occasion in which he doesn’t have a smile on his face.

Yet he is one of the most dedicated professionals a coach can come across.

It’s why he was able to complete 90 minutes having only featured in Chelsea’s in-house friendly last weekend and the Super Cup.

Mount was impressive against Palace. He constantly reclaimed the ball in the first half and earned Chelsea several free-kicks on the edge of the Palace box, one of which was converted by Alonso.

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Every word Thomas Tuchel said on Chelsea’s perfect start, Trevoh Chalobah and title chances
He also took the opportunity to give Jordan Ayew’s workout routine the seal of approval.

As the Chelsea midfielder stood opposite the Palace forward during a stoppage of play, he decided to squeeze Ayew’s bicep.

An attempt to get into the head of the Ghanaian? Perhaps, but Mount was clearly impressed as he gave a nod of approval before the game continued.

Pulisic unveils new celebration

As highlighted above, Pulisic didn’t produce a flawless display against Palace. There were moments in which he was tentative, occasions when he could’ve drove forward but tuned back.

Yet the American does have a habit of being in the right place at the right time in the penalty area, and particularly when the Eagles are Chelsea’s opponents.

On this occasion, Pulisic reacted fastest when a low cross into the penalty area was pushed clear by Vicente Guaita.

His shot wasn’t the cleanest – the Palace goalkeeper threw himself in the way in an attempt to block – but it found the back of the net to double Chelsea’s advantage.

And it gave Pulisic an opportunity to showcase his new celebration. The 22-year-old brought placed his arm over his face so that his tiger tattoo covered his eyes.

It was more effective than it perhaps sounds…which is why we have got the image below.

Christian Pulisic celebrates after scoring against Crystal Palace (Image: Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)
Chalobah receives a special congratulations

After he impressed in the Super Cup on Wednesday, it was only right that Chalobah maintained his spot in the Chelsea side.

The game against Palace was the 22-year-old’s Premier League debut, but he wasn’t overawed. To the contrary, he handled the occasion with ease.

Chalobah’s defending was flawless but his standout moment came at the opposite end of the pitch.

In the second period, he received the ball 20 yards out and was invited to shoot by the Palace defence. Chalobah obligated and his effort flew into the far corner.

It was a touching moment for the academy graduate, who joined Chelsea at the age of eight. That was clear in his celebration: Chalobah sunk to his knees, overcome by emotion.

He was quickly surrounded by his teammates who all congratulated the 22-year-old.

And after the game, there was one more Chelsea player keen to congratulate Chalobah: Tammy Abraham.

The striker was an unused substitute but when the full-time whistle sounded, he was straight onto the pitch and made a beeline for Chalobah.

The two then shared a few words as they embraced. It was a touch moment between the pair who get up together in the club’s academy.

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Abraham leaves with packed bags

While Chalobah may have finally cracked the Chelsea first-team, Tammy Abraham’s spell in the senior side at Stamford Bridge may be over.

According to reports in Italy, Roma have agreed a deal worth around £35million for Abraham, who Chelsea will be able to re-sign for £45million in the future.

Perhaps that is why Abraham wasn’t given the chance to say goodbye to the home crowd by Tuchel; Chelsea needed him to be protected.

After the game, Abraham went around the Stamford Bridge pitch with his teammates and waved to the supporters in the stands. It felt like a goodbye.

And after he showered and made his way out of the stadium, it was noteworthy that he was pulling a small suitcase behind him. His locker inside the dressing room may very well now be empty.

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