Premier League giants Chelsea have this afternoon provided an explanation for Pedro being pulled from the club’s starting XI to face Norwich City.
Norwich vs Chelsea
Frank Lampard’s men travelled to Carrow Road for today’s early kick-off, with the Blues having still been in search of their first win of the campaign.
Chelsea followed their opening day drubbing at the hands of Manchester United with a further defeat in the UEFA Super Cup versus Liverpool, and a disappointing draw at home to Leicester last time out.
After looking absolutely dominant during the early exchanges of their meeting with the Foxes last weekend, Chelsea faded badly as the clash wore on, eventually allowing Wilfred Ndidi to cancel out Mason Mount’s opener.
As such, ahead of kick-off today, the Londoners sat in 15th-spot in the Premier League table.
Abraham at the double
When all was said and done at Carrow Road, though, a thrilling encounter eventually saw Frank Lampard pick up his first win as Chelsea boss.
A hectic opening to proceedings saw Todd Cantwell cancel out Tammy Abraham’s opener with just 6 minutes on the clock, as both sides showcased their attacking intent.
Chelsea were soon back in front, though, as Mason Mount smashed home from close range. But the defensive shortcomings of the Blues proved costly once again with half an hour on the clock, as man of the moment Teemu Pukki slotted beyond Kepa for his 5th goal in the Finnish hitman’s first 3 Premier League outings.
10 – Teemu Pukki is the 10th player to have scored in each of his first three @premierleague appearances, while only Pavel Pogrebnyak also scored as many as five in his first three in the competition. Command. #NORCHE
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) August 24, 2019
The second-half saw Chelsea take back firm control of proceedings, however, eventually leading to Tammy Abraham bagging an all-important winner.
A drilled ball forward from Mateo Kovacic saw Abraham brilliantly cut inside with his first touch, before unleashing an unstoppable low drive beyond the helpless Tim Krul to secure all 3 points.
One negative on an otherwise positive day for the Blues, though, came on the personnel front.
With N’Golo Kante already missing through injury, Pedro was a late scratch from the club’s starting line-up.
Ross Barkley replaced the Spaniard in Lampard’s XI, with it having initially been unclear what the issue was.
As has since been confirmed by Chelsea, though, Pedro picked up a hamstring injury during the warm-up:
Despite his initial inclusion in the starting line-up, Pedro picked up a hamstring injury during the warm-up. Ross Barkley was his replacement and the Blues now have just six substitutes on the bench.#NORCHE
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) August 24, 2019
It now remains to be seen how long the diminutive wide-man is set to be sidelined for.