Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea have a habit of delivering memorable moments when they face each other, but Monday’s match might rise above the rest for the number of chaotic moments it produced.
Chelsea ended up winning the match 4-1 thanks to goals from Cole Palmer and Nicolas Jackson, but the goals were almost secondary. There were nearly as many red cards and notable injuries as goals, even more disallowed goals, and an incredible number of VAR checks that filled in the rest of an eventful evening.
Here’s a timeline of the bizarre Monday night fixture.
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1. Spurs strike first
Before the game came off the rails, the two sides engaged in some back-and-forth action and the hosts were able to open the scoring in the sixth minute.
James Maddison played the ball to Pape Sarr in the middle of the park, who then found Dejan Kulusevski to his right. The winger then made his way into the box and took a strike from the edge of the area took a massive deflection and went in.
2. Two goals called off for Chelsea
The visitors settled into the game after going down and appeared to tie the match not once, but twice in the span of a few minutes.
Raheem Sterling scored in the 21st minute but after a lengthy VAR check, the goal was ruled off for a handball. Five minutes later, Moises Caicedo seemed to give his side the lead only for the VAR officials to take another few minutes to declare the play was offside.
3. Romero sees red
It looked like Chelsea finally leveled the score when Jackson scored in the 29th minute, but upon review, Tottenham’s Cristian Romero was given a red card for violent conduct and the visitors were awarded a penalty. Palmer converted in the 33rd minute to officially make it 1-1.
Brennan Johnson came off for Eric Dier, the out-of-favor center back who lined up after Romero was sent off.
4. Maddison, van de Ven come off with injuries
After the fourth official announced there would be 12 minutes of stoppage time, Spurs had to make a double sub. James Maddison and Micky van de Ven came off for Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Emerson Royal, respectively. The changes meant that both of Tottenham’s starting center backs, both of whom were crucial to the team’s early season success, were no longer on the field.
5. Udogie’s second booking
As if things could not get worse for Spurs, Destiny Udogie picked up a second yellow card in the 55th minute following a foul on Palmer in an attempt to save his side from conceding another. He was the third member of Tottenham’s starting defense that would not finish the match.
6. Jackson scores a hattrick
Tottenham impressively kept Chelsea at bay for much of the second half, courtesy of several outstanding saves from Guglielmo Vicario. Spurs even had their looks at goal as the second half progressed, but the floodgates eventually opened for Jackson as the odds were stacked against the hosts.
His first came in the 75th minute after he connected with Sterling, but even then Ange Postecoglou’s side continued to push forward. Dier seemed to have an equalizer with minutes left on the clock, but another VAR check revealed a fractional offside call that disallowed the goal.
Jackson then scored two more in stoppage time once Spurs finally gave way after a hard-fought performance, scoring his first Chelsea hattrick in the process.