Kalidou Koulibaly

Chelsea vs Tottenham player ratings after combustible London derby


Chelsea vs Tottenham took some time to get heated up but there was a full boil going by the final stages of Sunday’s 1-1 draw at Stamford Bridge.

The London derby rivals might’ve been a little tentative to start and Chelsea definitely looked like the club that’s been in the rivalry ascendancy for some time, but Tottenham found some life through a tactical switch after halftime.

[ MORE: Tuchel furious with referee after Conte fight ]

When all was said and done, however, a Chelsea team in some need a statement performance for its manager got one for Thomas Tuchel, and did it at the expense of a man who’s brought it silverware in Antonio Conte.

Did Conte wait a bit too long to make some substitutions, or did some of his usual stars just let him down? A little of both?


Let’s dig into Chelsea vs Tottenham player ratings.

Chelsea player ratings vs Tottenham

Eduoard Mendy: 6.5 — Terrific early save on Ryan Sessegnon moments after the Blues went ahead on a chance that could’ve stifled Chelsea’s early joy. You want to judge his failure to get to the late corner, but four Spurs attackers were there, too.

Reece James: 7.5 — Well taken goal and good day going forward and defending. Gives his all, that’s for sure.

Kalidou Koulibaly: 8 — Proving every bit the Premier League player he was rumored to be year-upon-year-upon-year. A Kevin De Bruyne-esque finish to start the scoring. Actually terrifying.

Thiago Silva: 6

Marc Cucurella: 6.5– Buzzed up and down the pitch in a performance that will leave Pep Guardiola grimacing at City ownership (or whatever allowed the transfer to get to Chelsea).

Ruben Loftus-Cheek: 6.5

Jorginho (Off 73′): 5 — A quieter day as Chelsea’s central midfield work was best done without the ball. Gives the ball away in his box under pressure leading up to Hojbjerg goal.

N’Golo Kante (Off 85′): 6

Mason Mount: 7 — Not terribly effective in attack but his seven tackles and constant pressure were key to Chelsea’s moments of control.

Raheem Sterling (On 85′): 6.5 — Got his assist and the explosive nature he brings to the Blues is almost as clear as his calm in big-game experiences. That said, He struggled to drive at Tottenham’s back line and should’ve scored at least one.

Kai Havertz: 6.5 (Off 90′) — Could’ve scored. Should’ve scored. But got stuck into countless challenges and looked dangerous on the dribble. Still, he’s here to score goals and did not.


Cesar Azpilicueta (On 73′): N/A
Conor Gallagher (On 85′): N/A
Christian Pulisic (On 85′): N/A
Armando Broja (On 90′): N/A

Kalidou Koulibaly
(Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)

Tottenham player ratings vs Chelsea

Hugo Lloris: 5.5 — It’ll read a bit harsh but like Harry Kane getting a half-change, we’re used to Hugo Lloris coming up with a huge save. Could he have done better with the second Chelsea goal? It was a one-save day for the World Cup winner.

Ben Davies: 7.5 — Among Spurs’ MOTM candidates, with eight clearances and four tackles plus the layoff to Hojbjerg for Spurs’ lone goal.

Eric Dier: 6.5

Cristian Romero: 6.5 — Was set for a Spurs MOTM-type nod until he pulled Cucurella’s hair in a move that, should it have been called by VAR, would’ve sent him off and cost the corner that led to Kane’s goal.

Ryan Sessegnon (Off 57′): 5 — Pulled after 57 minutes, Chelsea had joy down the right side as Ruben Loftus-Cheek was a big foil for Sessegnon

Emerson Royal (Off 82′): 5.5 — Had enough bright moments going forward that you could miss his mistakes on Chelsea “almost” moments.

Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg: 8 — Only Kane was as strong a player on the day. Six clearances, four tackles, three blocked shots.

Rodrigo Betancur (Off 80′): 6

Dejan Kulusevski: 4.5 — We don’t say this much about the 22-year-old but he played a young and Immature game today.

Heung-min Son (Off 80′): 4 — One of the worst days you’ll see from the South Korean star, who was starved of the ball and didn’t have a good day defensively. Failed to close down Reece James cross on what should’ve been a Kai Havertz goal.

Harry Kane: 8.5– Come the moment, come the man. He missed a chance to score earlier in the match and he doesn’t often miss twice, does he? Busy all day even with very little support until Richarlison arrived into the game.


Richarlison (On 57′): 6.5 — Made his case on a day that Son and Kulusevski showed their fallibility.
Ivan Perisic (On 80′): 7 — Gets an assist on the corner
Yves Bissouma (On 80′): N/A
Lucas Moura (On 82′): N/A

Kalidou Koulibaly spins sensational goal, Chelsea leads Tottenham (video)


Kalidou Koulibaly, welcome to Stamford Bridge.

The big Chelsea defender is making his home Premier League debut a memorable one, smashing home off a set piece moments after lashing away from outside the box.

Koulibaly’s first effort fired wide of the near post as the center back sent a warning shot that had him apologizing to Raheem Sterling for not finding the forward on the left edge of the box.


But the longtime Napoli man made amends within minutes when fellow Chelsea new boy Marc Cucurella swept a corner kick through the fray that met the man mountain at the back post.

Koulibaly measures his volley and smacks it home with the outside of his foot in a shot that may’ve just grazed the top of Sterling’s head on the way to goal.

Wouldn’t that truly be a make-good if Sterling got credit?

In any event, Chelsea is living the dream early at Stamford Bridge against a Tottenham side tipped to potentially claim top London honors this season.

WATCH: Kalidou Koulibaly goal is all-quality to give Chelsea lead over Spurs

Everton vs Chelsea: Jorginho penalty the difference in slog


Jorginho scored the lone goal of Chelsea’s 1-0 win over old pal Frank Lampard and Everton on Saturday at Goodison Park.

The Italian rolled his penalty home after Ben Chilwell won the spot kick, and Thomas Tuchel’s men then settled into a plan to hold onto a lead and counter attack.

[ MORE: How to watch Premier League in USA ] 

That nearly backfired but Everton’s absent Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Salomon Rondon combined with Richarlison’s exit to leave the Toffees without a real finisher.

Raheem Sterling and Kalidou Koulibaly were both strong on debut for Chelsea, while Everton’s star was also a debutant in Dwight McNeil.


What we learned from Everton vs Chelsea

Careless fouls eventually burn Everton as Chelsea keeps knocking

Everton was fortunate to avoid conceding a penalty when Raheem Sterling appeared to be wrapped up in the box but was instead whistled for hunching over the ball once prone.

That was not the case in first-half stoppage time when Abdoulaye Doucoure caught hold of Ben Chilwell on Kalidou Koulibaly’s entry pass into the 18. Jorginho stepped to the spot and rolled a spot kick inside the post to give Chelsea a richly-deserved first-half lead.

Godfrey injury starts Everton season with woe

Jordan Pickford couldn’t save an errant pass that crossed the back line but the assistant referee did not spot it and Kai Havertz instead grabbed the loose ball and was only stopped from a shot toward goal by Ben Godfrey’s hard sliding challenge.

But Godfrey came off very worse for wear as a stretcher was immediately requested and Mason Holgate, who played well enough, was put into the game. A Toffees side without depth will not be in good shape without Godfrey for a long period of time.

Pulisic as 25-minute substitute

USMNT winger Christian Pulisic arrived in the 65th minute for Mason Mount. He did not see much of the ball in the first dozen or so minutes of his shift, with Everton looking for an equalizer. Not much = Two touches between the 65th and 79th minutes.

Tactical focus

Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea was lively and held the ball to start but oddly enough seemed content with a 1-0 lead for much of the remaining time.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

The introductions of Marc Cucurella, Christian Pulisic, and Ruben Loftus-Cheek opened some doors. Unfortunately for Chelsea, the Blues not only ceded a lot of the ball to their hosts but almost invited them into the final third.

Stars of the show

Raheem Sterling: Petered out down the stretch but was the man of the first half. He should’ve won a penalty and could’ve scored or assisted on a number of other occasions.

Kalidou Koulibaly: Came off injured after 75 minutes but otherwise looked the part of a star center back. No moment spoke louder than a first-half intervention on Anthony Gordon to keep the game scoreless.

Cesar Azpilicueta: Chelsea hailed his resigning as the renewal of terms for “Mr. Chelsea.” He barely put a foot wrong at the back of a 3-4-3.

Dwight McNeil: Got an hour on debut and the ex-Burnley man was stuck into four tackles and registered a key pass. Now he just needs someone who can run onto those key passes.

Vitaliy Mykolenko: Brilliant blocks in each half to deny Sterling and Co., racking up three clearances, a blocked shot, two interceptions, and two tackles.

What’s next?

Everton will host Villa at 7:30am ET Saturday as Lampard vs Gerrard takes on new meaning, while Chelsea renews acquaintances with another old pal when Antonio Conte’s Tottenham visits Stamford Bridge at 11:30am ET Aug. 14.

Transfer news: Guido Rodriguez to Arsenal, Koulibaly to Everton


The Premier League rumor mill doesn’t care about your club depth and budget, thank you very much.

[ MORE: How to watch PL in the USA ]  

Everton and Arsenal are both being linked with high-priced veteran upgrades at center back and defensive midfield, respectively, as the gossip cares not for need or economy.

Let’s dig into the rumors this Tuesday PM.

Guido Rodriguez to Arsenal

Here’s a new name for Mikel Arteta’s shopping list: Real Betis midfielder Guido Rodriguez.

The 26-year-old began his career with River Plate in his native Argentina before heading to Liga MX side Club Tijuana and then Club America.

Now capped 10-times by Argentina, Rodriguez could link up with Thomas Partey and Granit Xhaka as defensive midfielders for Arsenal.

His price tag, however, is a mighty high $80 million.

Rodriguez turns 27 next month and has only been with Betis since January 2020, and is second on Betis in tackles per game and interceptions per hame.

Mohamed Elneny is entering the last year of his deal and Xhaka is signed through 2022-23, but both are not much older than Rodriguez at 28 years old.

The price tag is high and the age is not, but if any manager is going to demand strength at defensive midfield it’s likely to be Arteta given his playing career.

Food for thought.

Koulibaly to Everton

Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti is being linked with a Kalidou Koulibaly reunion this summer.

While that seems farfetched — and likely is — the Italian manager worked with Koulibaly at Napoli and pulled similar magic in getting James Rodriguez and Alan to Goodison Park.

Liverpool and Manchester City have often been linked with the now-30 year old center back, who is almost certainly off Man City’s radar with the emergency of Ruben Dias and the renaissance of John Stones.

It would really say something about Ancelotti’s project if the club were to pony up the dough and he was able to convince Koulibaly of the Everton project, where it must be said there are a bevy of decent CBs.

From Mason Holgate and Ben Godfrey to Yerry Mina and Michael Keane, plenty of teams would like to have that depth. And three of the four are signed through 2024-25, with Mina inked through 2022-23.

Then again, perhaps the most important part of the equation is European football. Everton is not guaranteed that next season and, as we saw when Napoli claimed the cup over Juventus last season causing Koulibaly to burst into an emotional celebration, the center back needs to be in the chase for silverware.

Transfer news: Koulibaly to Liverpool; Szoboszlai to Arsenal


The transfer news just keeps on coming, with Kalidou Koulibaly to Liverpool and Dominik Szoboszlai to Arsenal among the reports.

[ MORE: How to watch PL in the USA ]  

With the January transfer window opening in just 62 days, get ready for plenty more rumors and reports as it seems like the summer window only just ended!

Koulibaly to Liverpool, finally?

Starting in Liverpool, it is believed the Reds want to sign a new center back in January giving the long-term injury to Virgil van Dijk, plus Joel Matip and Joe Gomez suffering with plenty of injuries in recent seasons.

Fabinho has even been injured since playing as an emergency center back, with only a few youngsters like Rhys Williams and Sepp van den Berg remaining.

After being linked with Kalidou Koulibaly, a report from Calciomercato in Italy claims the Reds are interested in signing the Napoli center back in January. Napoli wanted $100 million for Koulibaly, 29, but it appears his transfer value has fallen and he is open to a move away from Naples. Here’s what he said after their Europa League win against Real Sociedad on Thursday.

“I love Naples and Naples loves me, that’s the most important thing,” Koulibaly said. “I always make myself available game after game, I still have three years of contract, I’m calm, the teams are looking for me but I’m still here. I play at my level and I help this team and these people because I want to give something back to them then we’ll see what happens.”

Liverpool were likely to sign a new center back next summer anyway but Virgil van Dijk’s injury has accelerated their search not only of his long-term partner but also a leader who can come in this January and soften the blow of VVD’s injury.

Szoboszlai the next star at Salzburg

Dominik Szoboszlai is a name we will be hearing for a very long time as the Hungarian playmaker is the latest star to be developed at RB Salzburg.

Szoboszlai, 20, has scored four goals in his first four games of the UEFA Champions League this season and several clubs across Europe are hoping to sign the talented forward who has a penchant for scoring crackers from outside the box.

A report from the Sky Italy claims that Arsenal are keeping a close eye on Szoboszlai and hope to sign him in the next 12 months, as they struggle to negotiate with Lyon for Houssem Aouar and have essentially moved on from Mesut Ozil. After developing Sadio Mane, Naby Keita, Erling Haaland and Takumi Minamino in recent years, Szoboszlai is showing he can follow in their footsteps.

Szoboszlai is young, hungry and versatile and he seems exactly like the type of player Mikel Arteta wants to sign as he continues his overhaul at Arsenal.