The Blues produced their worst home performance of the season and European qualification looks difficult to achieve Powered By PixelsCloseNizaar Kinsella1 minute ago

This untelevised clash between 10th and 11th may not have had top billing in the Premier League, but it had huge implications for Mauricio Pochettino and Chelsea. 

The Stamford Bridge faithful booed their team off at half-time, chanted “we’re f***ing s***” in the 70th minute, booed Raheem Sterling off in the 72nd minute, and let rip once again at full-time as their side fell to a 4-2 defeat at home to Wolves.

Their anger was palpable after a Matheus Cunha hat-trick and an Axel Disasi own goal saw Wolves leapfrog the Blues in the table, sending the under-pressure club into the bottom half.

An excellent Cole Palmer goal which opened the scoring and a late Thiago Silva consolation were all supporters had to shout about in what was likely their worst home performance of the season. 

Pressure on Pochettino

A recent 10-match undefeated run at home was Mauricio Pochettino’s one saving grace in the league. However, the Argentine looked exposed as, with most of his players now fit, he still couldn’t win against a team directly below his in the table. 

The same problems he has complained about, including a lack of aggression, poor finishing and mistakes on the ball, were all evident. 

You have to wonder whether he is partly at fault for not building a team out of this disparate group of young players, who haven’t won any more points than Chelsea had at this stage last season.

A more difficult run of fixtures is coming up, with just 15 league games to rectify the issues.

Dreadful in possession 

The Premier League’s most expensive midfielder, Moises Caicedo, was substituted after 63 minutes. 

Caicedo kept giving the ball away inside his own half, and so did Malo Gusto, giving Wolves plenty of chances to mount dangerous counter-attacking opportunities. 

Conor Gallagher and Enzo Fernandez were also poor in possession and easily bypassed on the break. 

These problems extended to Chelsea’s attackers, notably Raheem Sterling and Christopher Nkunku, who both failed to hold the ball up. 

Palmer or bust

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Cole Palmer became the first under-21 player to reach double figures for league goals this season, putting Chelsea ahead with a confident right-footed finish early on. 

He has now scored 10 league goals, 12 in all competitions for Chelsea and 14 goals if you include his two for Manchester City before joining the west Londoners. 

Palmer remains an incredible player who can deliver both quality and calmness, and he was head and shoulders above his teammates here, creating chances for Sterling and Nkunku – but anxiety ran through the rest of them. 

Pep Guardiola once dubbed Tottenham the “Harry Kane team”, Chelsea are now the “Cole Palmer team”. 

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WolvesMauricio PochettinoCole PalmerMoises Caicedo

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Source:

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