Jose Mourinho's Substitutions Help Chelsea Beat Southampton

By Malamine Sane
Jose Mourinho
Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Chelsea beat Southampton 3-0 thanks to goals by Fernando Torres, Willian and Oscar. Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho will get much credit for this win as his changes massively impacted the game after a disappointing first half from his team. The Blues remain third in the Premier League table just two points behind league leaders Arsenal and one behind Manchester City.

For this trip to the Saint Mary’s Stadium, the Chelsea manager made six changes to the team that beat Liverpool on Sunday. In his usual 4-2-3-1, Branislav Ivanovic was replaced by Ashley Cole which pushed Cesar Azpilicueta to the right of the defense. David Luiz and Frank Lampard were replaced by Ramires and John Obi Mikel in central midfield while Juan Mata and Andre Schurrle came in for Willian and Oscar as attacking midfielders. Upfront, Samuel Eto’o was dropped for Torres. For Southampton, Mauricio Pochettino had to deal with the absences of Victor Wanyama and Pablo Osvaldo.

The first chance of the game for Chelsea came at the 2nd minute, but Torres’ shot was deflected wide by Southampton defender Jose Fonte. The Saints responded with Jay Rodriguez and Adam Lallana, but their efforts were easily stopped by Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech. Despite both teams’ attacking intentions, the first half ended goalless.

Five minutes after the break, Mourinho brought in Oscar and Willian in place of Schurrle and Mata. Those changes would have a massive impact on the game as the two Brazilians would be involved in Chelsea’s three goals. Oscar’s deflected cross came off the post, but Torres was in the right place at the right time for an easy tap in at the 6oth minute. Eleven minutes later, Willian’s powerful right-footed shot doubled Chelsea’s lead. Oscar added a third goal at the 82nd minute after a brilliant through ball by Eden Hazard.

After Manchester City’s victory earlier against Swansea, Chelsea was under pressure and absolutely needed a win to stay within one point of the Citizens.  The Blues responded perfectly with a convincing win facilitated by Jose Mourinho as his changes unlocked the game for Chelsea and helped his team to a massive victory

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