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  • Writer's pictureBy Paul Lagan at Stamford Bridge

Terrible season for the Blues ends in 1-1 draw against Champions League bound Newcastle Utd

By Paul Lagan at Stamford Bridge

Chelsea 1 v Newcastle 1


Well that’s all over then, a miserable season in which it’s virtually impossible to find any kind of positives.

Three managers, hopeless displays, rumblings of discontent within the changing room and corridors further up the stairwell at Stamford Bridge, a fan base bemused at the black hole the club had sunk into with little prospect of finding a way out.

The 1-1 draw with Newcastle - the goal was an own goal typified the desperate underperformance of a side assembled to the tune of more than a half a billion pounds.

In a world where blame is frowned upon, someone, somewhere has to take responsibility.

Up to 10 players are set for the axe. What the new look Chelsea will be come the start of the new season won’t be the responsibility of caretaker Frank Lampard who won only one of his games in charge.

Chelsea finished in 12th place, their lowest position ever in the Premier League era

With Mauricio Pochettino arriving next week having it’s believed signed a three-year deal this weekend, it remains to be seen who he will want to start in the blue shirt next season.

Newcastle started with all the pressure forcing a fine save from Kepa and another when he slapped out a cross. Unsure of themselves.

Chelsea, by contrast looked leggy and it came as no surprise that they went behind on nine minutes.

A regulation long ball out to Allan Saint-Maximin, the ball was fed further out wide and then arrowed across the six-yard box where Anthony Gordon was, free, unchallenged and he tapped it home past Kepa.

Martin Dubravka was on hand to knock Thiago Silva weak header away for a corner on 13 minutes.

The Blues equalised in bizarre fashion on 28 minutes when Raheem Sterling cut in from the right, his left-footed shot looked to be going wide, until Kieron Trippier got all muddled up. The ball came off his foot then arm and was diverted into the back of the net.

A quick counter-attack by the Toon almost resulted in them retaking the lead, but Miguel Almiron curled his left-footer wide of Kepa’s right post on 32 minutes.

Dubravka prevented a second Chelsea goal on 45 minutes, brilliantly parrying away the deflected effort and then Sterling was thwarted by Fabian Schar who hacked the ball of the line.

Lampard replaced Trevoh Chalobah with Wesley Forfana at half-time.

With no discernible performance improvement, Lampard decided to bring on on-loan Joao Felix and Carney Chukwuemeka - off went ineffectual Kai Havertz and Ruben Loftus-Cheek, who it's believed has played his last game for the Blues ahead of his expected move to AC Milan in the summer.

A long-range shot by Sterling on 62 minutes was easily held by Dubravka.

Sterling then slashed a left-footer over the Newcastle crossbar following a good Lewis Hall byline pass on 69 minutes.

Mateo Kovacic replaced Conor Gallagher with 20 minutes left on the clock.

While Chelsea dominating the second half, there was little to suggest they would score. Up at the other end, with 10 minutes left substitute Lewis Miley clipped Kepa’s crossbar within a fine edge of the area drive.

Christian Pulisic made a cameo appearance with a couple of minutes left, which summed up his season really, off went Madueke.

Felix headed over deep into her minutes of added time, but in truth, by now everyone’s was just happy it was all over.

And seconds later it was.

Teams: Kepa, Enzo, Silva, Loftus-Cheek, Chalobah, Sterling, Gallagher, Azpilicueta, Havertz, Madeueke, Hall

Subs: Mendy, Kovacic, Pulisic, Felix, Mudryk, Ziyech, Koulibaly, Chukwuemeka, Forfana

Newcastle United: Dubravka, Trippier, Botman, Schar, Gordon, Saint-Max in, Targett, Isak, Almiron, Anderson, Guimaraes

Subs: Karius, Gillespie, Dummett, Wilson, Lewis, Murphy, Ashby, Burn, Miles

Referee Jarred Gillet .


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