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Tottenham back on top after Chelsea stalemate


Chelsea's Timo Werner in action against during the Premier League game with Tottenham at Stamford Bridge
Timo Werner had a goal ruled out for offside in a cagey first half which saw just two attempts on target

Tottenham returned to the top of the Premier League despite being held by Chelsea in a highly-competitive yet goalless London stalemate.

The eagerly-anticipated fixture between two teams in excellent form failed to produce a goal as both sides cancelled each other out at Stamford Bridge.

Edouard Mendy kept out Serge Aurier’s ferocious strike while Steven Bergwijn scooped another Spurs chance over the bar.

Chelsea were looking to celebrate Roman Abramovich’s 1,000th game as club owner with victory over a Spurs team managed by their former boss Jose Mourinho.

The Blues struggled to carve out clear-cut chances although Hugo Lloris produced a great late save to deny Mason Mount.

Spurs, replaced at the top by Liverpool on Saturday, return to the summit, level on 21 points with the Reds but with a superior goal difference.

Chelsea are two points behind in third spot.

Free-scoring Chelsea frustrated

Frank Lampard’s Chelsea have impressed in front of goal this season but were unable to unlock Tottenham’s solid defence, where Joe Rodon impressed on his first top-flight start.

Lampard has added new dimensions in attack in 2020-21 in the shape of Hakim Ziyech, Timo Werner and Kai Havertz, with both Ziyech and Werner starting in London.

The German forward thought he had given the hosts the lead with an excellent finish only for it to be disallowed by an offside flag, while Ziyech lashed a rare chance wildly over the bar.

In the closing stages Mount let fly from distance but Lloris got down smartly before the France keeper denied substitute and fellow countryman Olivier Giroud to ensure Spurs recorded a fourth straight clean sheet.

Lampard and Chelsea are making progress, the Blues unbeaten in the Premier League since 20 September.

Having qualified for the knockout stages of the Champions League with two games to spare, they are in a healthy position in a tightly-packed group near the top of the Premier League after ending Tottenham’s five-match winning run.

Spurs well placed after surviving big test

Tottenham could have made a serious title statement by following up victory against Manchester City with another success at Stamford Bridge.

In the end they settled for a point in a game lacking in goalmouth incident.

Mourinho delivered three Premier League titles in two spells at Stamford Bridge under Abramovich and relished the opportunity of spoiling the Chelsea owner’s landmark occasion.

However, Spurs failed to score in the top flight for the first time since the opening weekend of the season as both defences dominated.

There were positives for Spurs despite the end of their four-match winning run in the Premier League.

Wales international Rodon slotted in well alongside Eric Dier in the centre of defence.

His mistake almost let in Giroud for a late winner but the 23-year-old did well to stop a Tammy Abraham headed chance in the first half.

Barring Leicester beating Fulham by a six-goal margin on Monday, Spurs will head into December looking down on the rest.

Happy travellers – the best of the stats

  • Tottenham have won 13 points away from home in the Premier League this season – their most in their opening five away games of a league campaign since 1991-92.
  • Chelsea and Spurs played out a goalless draw in the Premier League for the first time since November 2015.
  • Tottenham have won just one of their past 35 away games against Chelsea in all competitions (D12 L22), with that lone victory coming in April 2018.
  • Spurs (9) and Chelsea (8) are now the two teams on the longest current unbeaten runs in the Premier League.
  • Tottenham have kept a clean sheet in three consecutive away games in the Premier League for the first time since November 2013.
  • This was the first Premier League game in which neither Harry Kane or Son Heung-min have scored for Spurs since September 27, ending a run of six consecutive league games in which at least one of them had scored.
  • Chelsea keeper Edouard Mendy has kept more clean sheets than any other goalkeeper in the Premier League this season, with this being his fifth in six appearances in the competition.

What’s next?

Both clubs are in Europe in midweek. While Chelsea are in Spain to face Sevilla in a Champions League Group E game on Wednesday (20:00 GMT), Tottenham are in Austria on Thursday (17:55 GMT) to take on LASK in Group J of the Europa League.

Player of the match

NdombeleTanguy Ndombele

Chelsea

  1. Squad number24Player nameJames

  2. Squad number16Player nameMendy

  3. Squad number7Player nameKanté

  4. Squad number6Player nameThiago Silva

  5. Squad number19Player nameMount

  6. Squad number21Player nameChilwell

  7. Squad number17Player nameKovacic

  8. Squad number15Player nameZouma

  9. Squad number11Player nameWerner

  10. Squad number22Player nameZiyech

  11. Squad number18Player nameGiroud

  12. Squad number10Player namePulisic

  13. Squad number9Player nameAbraham

  14. Squad number29Player nameHavertz

Line-ups

Chelsea

  • 16Mendy
  • 24JamesBooked at 53mins
  • 15ZoumaBooked at 55mins
  • 6Thiago Silva
  • 21Chilwell
  • 17Kovacic
  • 7Kanté
  • 19MountBooked at 76mins
  • 22ZiyechBooked at 29minsSubstituted forHavertzat 83′minutes
  • 9AbrahamSubstituted forGiroudat 79′minutes
  • 11WernerSubstituted forPulisicat 74′minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Arrizabalaga
  • 2Rüdiger
  • 5Jorginho
  • 10Pulisic
  • 18Giroud
  • 28Azpilicueta
  • 29Havertz

Tottenham

  • 1Lloris
  • 24Aurier
  • 14Rodon
  • 15Dier
  • 3ReguilónBooked at 89mins
  • 17Sissoko
  • 5Højbjerg
  • 7Son Heung-MinSubstituted forLucas Mouraat 90+2′minutes
  • 28NdombeleSubstituted forLo Celsoat 65′minutes
  • 23BergwijnBooked at 50minsSubstituted forDaviesat 89′minutes
  • 10Kane

Substitutes

  • 6D Sánchez
  • 9Bale
  • 12Hart
  • 18Lo Celso
  • 27Lucas Moura
  • 33Davies
  • 45Alves Morais

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