The future is bright, the socks are orange and the football can be like clockwork under Maurizio Sarri.
They remain in step with the title contenders at the top of the
Ross Barkley scored his first goal for Chelsea as he starred in Sunday’s victory at Southampton in the Premier League
Midfielder Barkley scored Chelsea’s second goal of the afternoon after assisting Eden Hazard (right) for the game’s opener
Star man Hazard has now scored eight goals in as many games for Chelsea in all competitions — he is a player in top form
Substitute Alvaro Morata (left) came off the bench to score in stoppage time when he dinked the ball over Alex McCarthy
PLAYER RATINGS AND LIVE PREMIER LEAGUE TABLE
Southampton 3-4-3: McCarthy 5; Bednarek 5 (Romeu 46 min, 5), Yoshida 6, Hoedt 6; Soares 6, Hojbjerg 5, Lemina 6, Bertrand 6.5; Gabbiadini 6 (Long 78), Ings 6, Redmond 6
Bookings: Bertrand, Lemina, Soares, Romeu, Hojbjerg, Ings
Subs: Gunn, Vestergaard, Davis, Austin, Targett
Manager: Mark Hughes 6
Chelsea 4-3-3: Arrizabalaga 6; Azpilicueta 6, Rudiger 6, Luiz 6.5, Alonso 6; Kante 6.5, Jorginho 7, Barkley 8 (Kovacic 81); Willian 6.5 (Pedro 74, 5), Giroud 6.5 (Morata 68, 6), Hazard 7.5
Goals: Hazard 30, Barkley 57, Morata 90+3
Subs: Caballero, Fabregas, Zappacosta, Cahill
Manager: Maurizio Sarri 7
Ref: Craig Pawson 6
Season at a glance
- Premier League
- Premier League
- League One
- League Two
- Scottish Premiership
- Scottish Div 1
- Scottish Div 2
- Scottish Div 3
- Ligue 1
- Serie A
- La Liga
Olivier Giroud had 25 touches of the ball in his 67-minute appearance, with many of them coming in deep areas — as illustrated by the Chelsea frontman’s heat map
No 18 Giroud played a major role in Ross Barkley’s goal as he acrobatically volleyed the ball to the No 8 after Willian chipped forward a free-kick won by Eden Hazard
For more stats and maps
Barkley made the first for Eden Hazard at St Mary’s and scored his first Chelsea goal to clinch the win in the second half.
It was his first goal since he scored the winner for Everton against Watford in May last year and he received a standing ovation when he was replaced.
Barkley deserves a turn of fortune and it has been quite a week for a midfielder recalled into the England squad for games against Spain and Croatia.
Alvaro Morata came off the bench to add the third, his second goal in as many games after scoring the winner against Vidi in the Europa League on Thursday.
Sarri started with Barkley ahead of Mateo Kovacic in midfield, a vote of which was repaid after half an hour when he created the opening goal.
Barkley pounced to win the ball from Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg in midfield and unzipped Southampton’s back three with a quick pass forward.
Hazard gathered the ball as he eased into the penalty area and beat Alex McCarthy with a crisp and nerveless finish.
It was Hazard’s eighth goal in 10 appearances under Sarri and Chelsea thoroughly deserved the lead having dominated the opening exchanges.
Saints defended their penalty box and protected ‘keeper McCarthy with blocks to deny Hazard and Willian, who saw an early drive deflected against the bar.
Having survived the early pressure, Southampton became more adventurous and, midway through the first half, and Mario Lemina almost latched onto a cross from Danny Ings.
Danny Ings (left) had a glorious chance at 0-0 to give Southampton the lead but he ballooned the ball over from close range
The chance for Ings had been set up by Southampton full back Ryan Bertrand (left) who was playing against his former club
Had Ings been able to put his shot on target it almost certainly would have beaten goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga (right)
Ings looked shocked as he saw the ball fly off target, while Arrizabalaga and his Chelsea team-mates breathed a sigh of relief
Chelsea punished that miss from Ings after half an hour when playmaker Hazard fired home to give the visiting side the lead
Hazard’s goal was assisted by Barkley (out of shot) and the Belgian pointed at his team-mate to acknowledge his contribution
No 8 Barkley and No 10 Hazard then shared a hug as they celebrated Chelsea’s first goal of the afternoon on the South Coast
Manolo Gabbiadini tested Kepa Arrizabalaga from long range before Ings missed a glorious chance to put the home team into the lead.
Nathan Redmond released Ryan Bertrand, overlapping on the left flank and he picked out Ings, no more than five yards from goal with Arrizabalaga beaten by the cross.
Arriving at speed, Ings crashed his volley high over the goal.
Referee Craig Pawson rejected appeals for a penalty when Olivier Giroud was felled by Wes Hoedt before Hazard’s goal.
Chelsea purred for long spells but Sarri might be concerned with the chances they conceded.
Bertrand might have done better with a chance, early in the second half, a side-foot volley over at the back post.
Arrizabalaga made some fine saves in the second half, the best of them to turn a fierce 30-yarder from Redmond onto the bar.
Chelsea’s second came from a free-kick clipped into the box by Willian towards Giroud, who twisted into shape for an acrobatic volley but miscued it across goal to Barkley, who tapped in from close range.
Morata completed the scoring with a dink over McCarthy in stoppage time.
Southampton flickered, had moments of promise but they have won only once in the last 15 home games and this is shaping up as another season of struggle.
Barkley was celebrating again in the second half after getting on the scoresheet himself to net his first goal for the Blues
Former Everton midfielder Barkley was left with a simple finish at the far post after Chelsea performed a fine set-piece routine
Although Barkley’s goal was the result of a simple finish, the assist from No 18 Olivier Giroud was much more spectacular
Giroud acrobatically volleyed the ball across the face of goal after a free kick from Willian (out of shot) had been played to him
Morata compounded Southampton’s latest loss in stoppage time when he scored his second Premier League goal this season
Morata had been assisted by Hazard and the duo celebrated Chelsea’s third goal together at an ever-emptying St Mary’s