Everton 0 Chelsea 1: Jorginho’s penalty wins it as Thomas Tuchel’s new-look Blues edge past Frank Lampard’s Toffees


AFTER a nightmare tour of the States, the last place Thomas Tuchel wanted to be on the opening day was Goodison Park.

But Chelsea ended their horrific losing run on the blue half of Merseyside as Jorginho’s penalty in first half injury time finally put a smile on his coach’s face.

The problems keep mounting for Frank Lampard’s Toffees however, despite a promising performance, after Ben Godfrey’s gruesome leg injury while Yerry Mina also hobbled off.

Both Lampard and Tuchel were far from pleased with their pre-season preparations across the pond this summer.

For the Blues, a mixture of shocking results, gruelling travel and weather conditions and frustrating transfer window set-backs had Tuchel spitting feathers.

It culminated in the German’s brutal put-down of his players, admitting they were not ready for the start of the Premier League campaign and lacked physical and mental commitment.

Everton’s embarrassing 4-0 defeat to Minnesota, Richarlison’s £60m exit and then Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s renewed injury woe has also left Lampard pulling his hair out.

They both arrived at Goodison then hoping for some relief, and Lampard perhaps with more of a spring to his step given Chelsea had lost on their last four Prem visits to the ground.

But it was Tuchel who headed back down to London with some good news to cling to, even if he knows there is a lot more work to do on and off the pitch with Todd Boehly.

Despite missing several targets so far in his reign as owner, Boehly has delivered Raheem Sterling and Kalidou Koulibaly, who both earned their Prem debuts for the club.

Marc Cucurella’s £62m arrival on Friday meant he began on the bench, alongside the itchy feet of Armando Broja, while Timo Werner was omitted from the squad altogether.

Everton also had several new faces on show for the Goodison faithful as James Tarkowski, Dwight McNeil and Nathan Patterson made their Prem bows.

McNeil played in a front three alongside Demarai Gray and Anthony Gordon in the absence of the crocked Calvert-Lewin and suspended Solomon Rondon.

But it was Tarkowski’s presence next to Mina that would have pleased Lampard in his attempts to avoid a repeat of last season’s 66 goals conceded in the league.

It took 11 minutes for those hopes to be blown apart in a bizarre defensive and officials mix-up that saw Godfrey carried off on a stretcher and taken straight to hospital.

Godfrey’s overhit back-pass had Jordan Pickford scrambling to deny Chelsea a corner.

Replays showed the ball had clearly gone out as Pickford tapped it back on the pitch, but Mason Mount was allowed to play on, and Godfrey piled in with a big tackle.

The result had him immediately call for the medics and required treatment for eight minutes before being carted off.

Goodison’s lively atmosphere had been completely wiped out, and the visitors attempted to take advantage as Pickford got down to stop Mount’s low driven effort.

Their fresh away strip is called ‘Ice Cold Lion Print Strip’, but their lack of ruthlessness in front of goal suggested anything but ice cold.

Everton reacted well as Tarkowski forced Edouard Mendy to tip over his header and Thiago Silva used all his nous to cut out a speedy counter attack by Gray and Gordon.

Sterling thought he had been gifted a debut goal as he tucked away Pickford’s spilled attempts to save Kante’s shot, but the ex-Manchester City forward was a mile offside.

Luck was on their side in the seventh minute of injury time though, thanks mainly to Abdoulaye Doucoure’s dim-witted challenge on Ben Chilwell in the box.

In a repeat of the Euros final shoot-out last summer, Italy’s Jorginho came face-to-face with England’s Pickford.

Back then, Pickford saved down to his right.

On this occasion, Jorginho went the same way but Pickford did not.

Despite the late blow, Everton emerged in the second half determined to fight their way back as Gray beat Silva to the ball only for Mendy to produce a good stop.

The Senegalese keeper was called into action soon after, making himself big to block Doucoure’s swipe in the box.

Everton were running out of ideas, even with the introduction of Dele Alli, and Mina’s substitution with suspected cramp meant their gung-ho approach up top was tamed.

Cramp was also giving Koulibaly some discomfort, allowing Cucurella a 15-minute cameo at the back, and he came close to teeing up Sterling with a low delivery across goal.

The end of the match was then delayed by a medical emergency in the stands in the 84th minute, but even 10 minutes of stoppage time did little to inspire the hosts.

When it rains it pours for Everton, even after a summer of hope and crossed fingers.

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