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Brentford 0-1 Chelsea: Mendy masterclass lifts the blues to the top

Chelsea defeated Brentford 1-0 in the first league meeting between the two clubs since 1947, thanks to a first-half goal from Ben Chilwell.

Both teams came into the game unbeaten in London derbies, and the first half was evenly matched, with neither side having a shot before the 17th minute.

The game erupted moments later, with Bryan Mbeumo hitting the post and Romelu Lukaku finding the back of the net, only for the goal to be ruled out for offside.

However, the ‘Blues’ took the lead on the stroke of halftime thanks to a spectacular strike from Chilwell.

The ball fell to England’s full-back on the edge of the area, and he rifled it into the corner past a despairing David Raya. He’s now scored in each of his last three club and country appearances, and Thomas Tuchel’s side has scored in each of their last eight Premier League away games.

The pattern of play changed little in the second half as both teams struggled to create clear openings.

Lukaku missed from close range after Timo Werner’s shot was blocked, and Ivan Toney’s penalty claim was denied after a collision with Malang Sarr. The ‘Bees’ forward went close moments later, as his volley tested the reflexes of Chelsea goalkeeper Édouard Mendy. Thomas Frank’s team was piling on the pressure, and Mbeumo hit the post for the second time after eluding the defense.

Surprisingly, he’s hit the woodwork six times this season, more than any other team in the league.

Brentford pushed for a goal, but they couldn’t find a way through. Mendy brilliantly saved Saman Ghoddos’ effort, and Trevoh Chalobah cleared Cristian Nrgaard’s rebound off the line.

In stoppage time, Mendy tipped an overhead kick over the bar for the Danish international. In the end, Thomas Tuchel’s men provided a tenacious rearguard that helped them reclaim first place in the Premier League, surpassing Liverpool and Manchester City.

Image by AFP

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