Brentford vs Chelsea was a tight, tense clash as the Blues remained top of the Premier League table after a narrow victory.
And thanks to Edouard Mendy.
Ben Chilwell grabbed the only goal of the game, as his fine first half struck proved the difference for Thomas Tuchel’s side.
Bryan Mbeumo twice hit the post for Brentford, while Edouard Mendy was in inspired form to secure the win for the Blues.
With the win Chelsea have six wins from their first eight games of the campaign, while Brentford have 12 points but pushed their illustrious west London rivals all the way.
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Final score, stats on Brentford vs Chelsea
Goal scored: Chilwell 45′
Shots: Brentford 17, Chelsea 5
Shots on target: Brentford 7, Chelsea 1
Possession: Brentford 43, Chelsea 57
3 things we learned from Brentford vs Chelsea
1. Mendy saves Chelsea: The Senegalese goalkeeper made multiple brilliant saves in the second half and the last one was stunning as he tipped Norgaard’s overhead kick onto the bar. Everybody inside the stadium could not believe it. It was a true hands on head moment and this was one of the best goalkeeping displays in recent memory.
2. Brentford will always go for it: Thomas Frank and his side are brilliant to watch. They always deliver drama and they will always go for it. It is not in their DNA to play it safe. Sometimes they will lose, like they did against Chelsea, but they were in this the whole game and only an amazing goalkeeping display denied them at least a point. The Bees are superb to have in the PL.
3. Lukaku, Chelsea stars have off day: Blazing a shot over the bar from close range, despite being offside, summed up Lukaku’s day. He did his work defensively and never stopped trying but along with Azpilicueta, Kante and Werner, they had off days. Instead, it was Malang Sarr, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Trevoh Chalobah who stood tall and helped Chelsea hang on late on.
Man of the Match: Edouard Mendy – There were some great displays from Brentford, but Mendy was sensational and his saves in the second half won this for Chelsea.
Chelsea had a few chances early on but Brentford were a threat on the break, as Bryan Mbeumo came so close to giving them the lead.
A cross from the right caused havoc and Mbeumo hit the post, then somehow Chelsea cleared and thought they had taken the lead. Werner crossed for Lukaku to slot home but his goal was ruled out for offside.
Mateo Kovacic saw his free kick deflected just over as Chelsea started to take control, and they should have been 1-0 up. Lukaku teed up Werner on the edge of the box but the German striker somehow slotted his shot wide as Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel could not believe it.
Chelsea did take the lead before the break as a cross towards Lukaku was knocked down to the edge of the box and Chilwell drilled a perfect strike into the top corner to put the Blues ahead.
Malang Sarr, Trevoh Chalobah and Ruben Loftus-Cheek all received plenty of praise from Tuchel as the trio, far from regulars, helped Chelsea keep control of the game.
In the second half Brentford pushed hard to get back in the game. A cross was cleared by Romelu Lukaku who was back defending in his own box, while Ivan Toney wanted a foul on Chalobah as he went down when clean through but nothing was given.
Lukaku blazed a shot over from close range but he was offside, as Brentford took more chances late on and left gaps for Chelsea to exploit.
They almost equalized from a long throw as Edouard Mendy denied Toney’s effort from a flick on, as the Bees kept buzzing.
Late on Mendy denied Mbeumo with another fine save and then in stoppage time he denied Cristian Norgard as he did superbly to tip his acrobatic effort onto the bar.
Mendy was the reason Chelsea won this game.
Brentford team news, injuries, lineup
Kristoffer Ajer and Vitaly Yanelt are both battling back to full fitness after respective thigh and hamstring injuries, while Mads Sorensen, Josh DaSilva and Shandon Baptiste are all long-term absentees for the Bees.
🚨 𝙏𝙀𝘼𝙈 𝙉𝙀𝙒𝙎 🚨
➡ Jensen and Onyeka start
➡ Ajer returns to squad
— Brentford FC (@BrentfordFC) October 16, 2021
Chelsea team news, injuries, lineup
Thiago Silva is expected to miss out after returning late from international duty with Brazil, while Antonio Rudiger is also out with a back injury. Romelu Lukaku is fit after picking up small knocks, while Reece James and N’Golo Kante will both return for the Blues (James is not starting, Kante is). Thomas Tuchel has confirmed that USMNT star Christian Pulisic is still out with the ankle injury he picked up in early September.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) October 16, 2021
Thomas Frank’s Bees have been superb in their first-ever Premier League season, as they sit in seventh place and have 12 points from their first seven games of the season. Their impressive win away at West Ham last time out showcased their quality, while a home win against Arsenal and a draw against Liverpool has already proved they can mix it with the big boys. Ivan Toney and Bryan Mbeumo will both relish the opportunity to rough up the reigning European Champions.
Thomas Tuchel and Chelsea sit top of the Premier League table heading into this weekend, but the Blues have had a few issues in recent weeks. Romelu Lukaku has had a dip in form, while a few key injuries have disrupted Chelsea’s rhythm. They will be the favorites to win as they make the short trip across west London to Brentford, but with so many Chelsea players away on international duty, it is never easy for these big boys to get going after the break.
Odds and ends (full odds provided by our partner, PointsBet)
Brentford are massive underdogs to win at +525, while Chelsea are heavy favorites at -176. The draw is +275.
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This is going to be a lot closer than people think, but I think the extra class of Chelsea’s attackers will make the difference. Just. Brentford 1-2 Chelsea.