Chelsea v Crystal Palace player ratings: Mudryk 8, Nkunku 7; Henderson 6, Eze 5

Substitute Noni Madueke's late penalty seals 2-1 victory for Blues at Stamford Bridge

Powered by automated translation

Chelsea needed an 89th-minute penalty from substitute Noni Madueke to labour to a 2-1 home victory over Crystal Palace in a Premier League London derby on Wednesday.

Madueke was brought down by Eberechi Eze who caught the Chelsea midfielder's trailing leg and, after initially waving play on, referee Michael Salisbury was called by VAR to the screen where he signalled a foul and the Blues eked out a win.

Mauricio Pochettino's side took an early lead through Mykhailo Mudryk but Michael Olise pegged the hosts back at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea jad dominated the first half and created several openings despite missing suspended attacking pair Raheem Sterling and Cole Palmer.

Pochettino handed left-back Ian Maatsen his first top-flight start on the right of the attack and the 21-year-old came close early on, nudging past Dean Henderson but Tyrick Mitchell cleared the ball away as it rolled towards goal.

Mudryk broke the deadlock in the 13th minute after Christopher Nkunku, making his first start for Chelsea since his summer move from RB Leipzig, played in Malo Gusto, zipping outside him on the left.

The Ukraine winger could have scored his second soon afterwards when Nicholas Jackson teed him up with a backheel, but Henderson rushed out to save well.

The hosts were rampant but Palace snatched an equaliser just before the break through Olise after another Chelsea defensive error.

After the late goal and halftime break, Chelsea appeared to lose momentum before a late change in fortunes.

Defeat leaves Palace three points above the relegation zone and coach Roy Hodgson under pressure.

The win was the third in a row at home in the Premier League for Chelsea after victories over Sheffield United and Brighton & Hove Albion. But those victories have also come alongside away defeats at Newcastle United, Manchester United, Everton and Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Pochettino said he expected more from his expensively assembled side.

"The Premier League is really tough and we need to be consistent," the Argentine told the BBC.

"The first half of the season has been really up and down and it's been tough and difficult. But we're positive and we need to show that we can compete."

Player ratings from the match can be seen in the picture gallery above. To view the next image, click on the arrows or swipe if on a mobile device.

Updated: December 28, 2023, 6:20 AM