“Could have nicked it”- Declan Rice reveals Chelsea weaknesses West Ham exploited

Declan Rice points out the weaknesses exploited by West Ham against Chelsea

Talking to the media after the match (h/t Football.London), West Ham United midfielder Declan Rice pointed out the weaknesses exploited by the Hammers in the game against Chelsea on Saturday.

After making a good start in the game and taking the lead through Joao Felix, Chelsea struggled to keep out of the attacks from West Ham, especially in wide areas through the likes of Jarrod Bowen and Said Benrahma. Michail Antonio was causing problems too, but Thiago Silva had a semblance of control over that.

Eventually, after the half-hour mark, a cross from Vladimir Coufal – who was left in acres of space down Chelsea’s left-hand side, was nodded on by Bowen for Emerson to ghost in unmarked at the far post to score.

Arsenal are interested in Chelsea target Declan Rice from West Ham.
Declan Rice points out the weakness exploited by West Ham vs Chelsea. (Photo by Stephen Pond/Getty Images)

Talking about how David Moyes’ exploited the weakness exuded by the Blues while defending, here’s what Rice said (h/t Football.London):

“It took us a little while to get going and adapt to their system.

“But once we found out their weakness, getting the ball down the sides of them and realised their wingers weren’t really tracking back. We managed to get the goal from that and exploit that. The last 20 minutes was there for us and we could have nicked it.”

As much as it was a well-worked equaliser by the Hammers, Graham Potter’s side made a few mistakes to allow that to happen. Firstly, Marc Cucurella, for some reason, handed space for Coufal to look up and find Bowen in the box. Then, Reece James and Noni Madueke had no communication as to who is marking Emerson at the far post.

Generally, the fullbacks are responsible for goals conceded of this type. So, we can point fingers at Cucurella and James for their lack of awareness and communication.

Chelsea defender Marc Cucurella calls for boss Graham Potter to be given time.
Marc Cucurella was one of the players responsible for giving the goal away cheaply. (Photo by DENIS LOVROVIC/AFP via Getty Images)

After scoring the first league goal in three games, the team needed not to offer chances to the opposition to make a comeback. We did exactly the opposite of that and handed them a few opportunities on the plate.

More Chelsea News:

Cucurella’s defensive work does not seem to improve. If Ben Chilwell is fit enough to start, he should do that from the next game onwards. James, on the other hand, needs to tune into his partnership with Madueke.