Alan Shearer slams Chelsea’s first-half display against Man City as ‘nowhere near good enough’


‘That performance is not acceptable… they’ve been nothing short of PATHETIC’: Alan Shearer slams Chelsea’s display against Man City as ‘nowhere near good enough’ after they conceded three in the first half without having a shot

Alan Shearer has launched a scathing assessment of Chelsea‘s first-half performance against Manchester City in Sunday’s FA Cup third round clash  – taking aim at their toothless attack in particular. 

Kai Havertz was hooked at half-time, having given away a penalty for a needless handball and putting in a largely forgettable performance up front, with midfielder Mateo Kovacic also making way in the interval. 

Graham Potter‘s side are without numerous first-team stars, but after narrowly losing 1-0 to City on Thursday, found themselves 3-0 down by the interval, after goals from Riyad Mahrez, Julian Alvarez and Phil Foden.  

Alan Shearer launched a scathing assessment of Chelsea's first-half performance

Alan Shearer launched a scathing assessment of Chelsea’s first-half performance 

Chelsea went in at the break 3-0 down after goals from Riyah Mahrez, Julian Alvarez and Phil Foden

Chelsea went in at the break 3-0 down after goals from Riyah Mahrez, Julian Alvarez and Phil Foden

After going into the break 3-0 down against a much-changed City side, Shearer revealed his disappointment in the Blues’ performance at the Etihad, claiming that a long injury list was no excuse for the dismal showing. 

‘From a Chelsea point of view, that is not acceptable that performance,’ the former Newcastle legend said. ‘I said they needed some energy, character, all of those things.

‘I don’t care how many injuries you’ve got in your team, you can still go out and put a shift in. They haven’t and it’s embarrassing from their point of view.

Kai Havertz was one of two Chelsea players to be substituted at half-time by Graham Potter

Kai Havertz was one of two Chelsea players to be substituted at half-time by Graham Potter

‘Going forward its been so bad. They’ve been nothing short of pathetic in forward positions. Where’s the movement? They’ve had nothing up front at all. Everything has been sideways or even backwards.

‘They’ve got to give the fans something now, show they care about this football club, because that 45 minutes was not acceptable.’

Both sides had made a number of changes – with Chelsea handing a debut to young centre-back Bashir Humphreys as one of six new faces after facing the same opposition three days previously. 

The Blues have won only three of their last 10 games, and only once in the first four of 2023

The Blues have won only three of their last 10 games, and only once in the first four of 2023

But with pressure growing on Potter following a run of poor results, his side were unable to put in a strong enough performance to allow to sit any more comfortable in the dugout. 

Havertz was an almost non-existent presence in attack, as his poor season continues with the German international managing just seven goals and an assist so far in 2022-23.

Following an especially poor performance on Thursday evening, in which he was subbed off after coming on earlier in the game, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was left out of the squad entirely.  

The Blues have won just three of their last ten games, winning just once in the new year after four games so far.

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