How Chelsea’s 18 Internationals Fared In The November Break

How Chelsea's 18 Internationals Fared In The November Break

With international football finished until March 2021, clubs are rejoicing at the prospect of having their squad together for the long haul.

One club who will be particularly pleased are Chelsea, who had 18 internationals representing 11 different nations during the pointless November break. Some performed much better than others, giving head coach Frank Lampard something to chew over while he took a breather.

There is a glut of Premier League and Champions League football to come for Chelsea, so squad depth will be important as ever. So who played themselves into form and who let themselves down? Let’s take a peak.

Reece James played in the friendly against Ireland 

England played three fixtures over this break, kicking off with a (un)friendly against Republic of Ireland before UEFA Nations League ties against Belgium and Iceland.

Mason Mount started all three games, scoring in the 4-0 win over Iceland, while he also impressed against Stephen Kenny’s Ireland. Tammy Abraham appeared as a substitute in two of the games but struggled to make an impact, which won’t do his chances of starting regularly for Chelsea any good.

Defender Reece James started in the friendly and completed 90 minutes in a flawless performance before returning to his club due to suspension in the competitive games, while Ben Chilwell played just 38 minutes of the game against Belgium before being forced off with a back spasm. He consequently took no part against Iceland.

Giroud edged closer towards Thierry Henry’s interntional goals record 

The Blues’ French contingent were out in full force, though a weakened France team featuring Kurt Zouma and Olivier Giroud did go down to a shock defeat against Finland in Paris.

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But it was good news in Nations League matters as Les Blues cruised into the semi-finals thanks to a win over Portugal in Lisbon, made possible by N’Golo Kante’s goal and man of the match performance.

Giroud also featured twice in their final group game, scoring twice to move within seven goals of Thierry Henry’s record haul of 51 strikes, while Zouma also added another substitute appearance to his repertoire.

Emerson featured for Italy during the break 

Italy continued their fantastic form under Roberto Mancini with three wins from three during this round of games.

Emerson Palmieri completed 71 minutes in the 4-0 friendly win over Estonia and 90 minutes in both Nations League ties against Poland and Bosnia, keeping a clean sheet in both matches too. His strong performances will have him knocking on Lampard’s door hoping to get a chance for his club side.

Jorginho also played 90 minutes in the two group stage games, getting back to his usual self from the penalty spot in the win against Poland.

Timo Werner
Werner featured as Germany were smashed by Spain 

Germany got off to a fine start during this break, with Antonio Rudiger playing 90 minutes in the wins over Czech Republic and Ukraine.

Timo Werner didn’t feature in the friendly over the Czech’s but did score twice against Ukraine, heading into an empty next from five yards out for his first before tucking away a cut-back in the second half to double his tally.

Things went a bit pear shaped against Spain, however, as Die Mannschaft were pumped 6-0 and had just 30% possession – Werner playing a part for 77 torturous minutes.

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Belgium v Denmark - UEFA Nations League
Christensen started for Denmark as they lost to Belgium 

Chelsea’s resident great Dane featured for 90 minutes in two of Denmark’s three fixtures during this break.

Christensen was a key part of the three man defence that stole a win against Iceland, before being dealt the task of handling Belgium’s Romelu Lukaku.

He was unsuccessful in his quest to silence the Inter man, as Denmark fell to a 4-2 defeat – a performance that reinforced his struggles against top tier opposition.

Edinson Cavani, Thiago Silva
Thiago Silva captained Brazil against Uruguay 

Thiago Silva’s good form for his club carried over into international duty with Brazil as he captained the side to consecutive wins and clean sheets.

The win against Venezuela was routine, albeit only by the odd goal, while the clash with Uruguay was fiery and more closely contested. Despite the likes of Edinson Cavani and Darwin Nunez being up front, Silva helped Brazil shut them out in a 2-0 win.

Croatia v Portugal - UEFA Nations League
Kovacic scored twice as Croatia were beaten by Portugal 

It was a bittersweet international break for former Inter and Real Madrid midfielder Mateo Kovacic

The Croat featured for 77 minutes as his country were beaten by Sweden before completing 90 minutes in the loss to Portugal, a game in which he scored twice – his first international goals for five years.

Good performances, poor results but whether Lampard was paying attention or not is a different question.

Ziyech's fantastic form continued with Morocco
Ziyech’s fantastic form continued with Morocco

Hakim Ziyech continued his fantastic form when he travelled over to represent Morocco in their double header against Central African Republic.

The twinkle-toed winger scored three times across the two games to put Morocco on the verge of qualification for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations.

Two more games of football featuring Edouard Mendy that ended with clean sheets for the Blues stopper.

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The 6’5 Senegalese goalkeeper played 90 minutes in both fixtures as Senegal beat Guinea-Bissau 2-0 and 1-0 in their double-header and will walk back into Chelsea’s dressing room brimming with confidence.

England U21 v Albania U21 - UEFA Euro Under 21 Qualifier
Hudson-Odoi scored for England’s U21’s 

Chelsea’s flying winger was in hot form for the England Under-21s as he played and scored twice during the break.

Hudson-Odoi slotted home a penalty in the 3-1 win over Andorra, before a trademark run down the wing and curled finish against Albania helped the Young Lions to a 5-0 win.

With Christian Pulisic struggling with injuries, Hudson-Odoi has done his chances of playing more no harm at all.

David De Gea, Kepa Arrizabalaga
Kepa with international teammate David de Gea 

Not such good news (again) for Kepa, but at least this was to be expected.

Chelsea’s new backup goalkeeper was on familiar duties for Spain, watching David de Gea between the posts while chomping down on a pack of Rolos.

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