The ‘Battle of the Bridge’ lived upto its hype as it produced one of the most thrilling games of football in the Premier League season 22/23. The temperature raised in such a way that Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel and Tottenham Hotspurs boss Antonio Conte became involved in brawls twice during the match.
Kalidou Koulibaly opened the scoring for Chelsea in the 19th minute. He scored his maiden goal for the club. However, the match began to heat up after the second half.
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Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg equalised for Spurs in the 68th minute, following which Conte broke into wild celebrations. The Chelsea manager was not too pleased as he was of the opinion that the goal must be disallowed due to the foul by Rodrigo Bentancur.
The foul by Bentancur occurred 24 seconds before the goal, and the refereee didn’t stop the game, so the goal couldn’t have been disallowed. It is then, when the two managers became involved in a tussle, which ended after the referees intervened and gave each of them a yellow card.
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However, Tottenham Hotspur’s happiness was short lived as Reece James converted from a Raheem Sterling pass in the 77th minute of the game. Needless to say, Tuchel celebrated the goal Jose Mourinho-style, running down the touchline past disgruntled Conte.
James scored a goal at Stamford Bridge for the first time since he scored in Chelsea’s 4-0 victory over Juventus on November 23, 2021. Sterling also registered his first assist at Stamford Bridge in the game.
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The pressure was back on the Spurs, especially on Heung Min Son, the league’s Golden Boot winner last season. However, Harry Kane scored a last minute header to a Christian Pulisic corner, to give Spurs an equaliser on Saturday.
And when it looked that match had given all its surprises, Tuchel and Conte clashed one more time. This time while exchanging handshakes, which all managers do at the end of every match.
Since 2018, Chelsea has not suffered a league defeat to Tottenham Hotspur. But at the end of the day, Spurs will be the happier team after salvaging a draw in a match where the were put under immense pressure by Chelsea. Chelsea not only had the larger possession (65%), but also had more passing accuracy (85%).