Revealed: How Enzo Fernandez intervened in Cole Palmer, Raheem Sterling “row” during Arsenal draw at Stamford Bridge

October 22nd, 2023 by Olasunkanmi Ibikunle

Arsenal came back from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in a game that was littered by goalkeeper mistakes. Cole Palmer and Mykhaylo Mudryk had put the hosts 2-0 up before Declan Rice and Leandro Trossard drew level for Mikel Arteta’s side.

Palmer started up front and opened the scoring from the penalty spot in the 15th minute. VAR adjudged William Saliba to have handled the ball and Palmer scored for the second game in a row from 12 yards.

Arsenal could not lay a glove on Chelsea, who doubled their lead just three minutes into the second half. Mudryk, who came close to moving to the Emirates in January, scored his first goal at Stamford Bridge, catching out David Raya with a cross that looped over the Spaniard’s head.

The visitors had to rely on a goalkeeper error themselves to get back into the game, with Robert Sanchez gifting Rice an open goal from 20 yards which he took with aplomb after a poor pass out from the back. Arsenal then drew level through substitute Trossard, who expertly finished Bukayo Saka’s cross.

Mistakes from both side’s goalkeepers were pivotal in this one. Raya in particular had a shaky evening but Sanchez at the opposite end will also not want to remember his role in Arsenal’s first goal.

Raya had been troubled during the recent win over Manchester City but got through it with a clean sheet. However, he was less fortunate today.

Mudryk – who else – came up with Chelsea’s second goal with an intended cross that caught Raya off his line and looped into the net. Arsenal looked toothless in attack and unable to cause Chelsea problems.

But Sanchez stepped up with a horror moment, passing the ball to Rice who finished well despite having the whole goal to score in. Pochettino will be ruing that mistake in particular as it let Arsenal back into the game.

With Armando Broja missing through injury, Nicolas Jackson would have been the obvious choice to replace him. Pochettino did spend £30million on the striker and he had scored in his last two appearances.

But Pochettino dealt a brutal snub to Jackson by instead bringing Mudryk into the team. Many thought that would see Raheem Sterling play centrally but it was Palmer who instead got the nod.

And his manager was proven right to start him as the main No 9. Palmer was Chelsea’s most dangerous player and gave Gabriel and William Saliba a difficult evening.

The £45million signing from Manchester City showed he has confidence in abundance by demanding he took the penalty when Sterling wanted it. He already looks to be a top signing and Jackson may now wonder when he will win his starting spot back.

Chelsea team-mates were involved in a row before Palmer stepped up for the penalty. Sterling looked determined to take the spot-kick despite his poor previous record.

However, Palmer scored from 12 yards against Burnley and wanted the responsibility again. Enzo Fernandez got involved and appeared to have the sway in the decision.

Fernandez was seen pointing towards Palmer as Sterling reluctantly gave him the ball. Palmer remained composed and sent Raya the wrong way.

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Cole Palmer reveals reason for joining Chelsea, identifies Blues star who helped his career “always looked after me… put his arm around me”

September 1st, 2023 by Olasunkanmi Ibikunle

Cole Palmer has revealed that the project led by Mauricio Pochettino at Stamford Bridge attracted him to Chelsea.

The England Under-21 international has penned a seven-year contract, with a club option of a further year, and he’s ready to get to work at Cobham training ground.

In his first interview with the official Chelsea website, Palmer said: “I’m excited to get started and it feels great to sign.

“I’ve joined Chelsea because the project here sounds good and because of the platform I will have to try to showcase my talents. It is a young and hungry squad and, hopefully, we can do something special here.”

Then, Palmer spoke of his delight to reunite with former City teammate Raheem Sterling, who took him under his wing at the Etihad Stadium. The new Chelsea signing said: “Raz has always looked after me, so I appreciate him.

“He was one when I was coming through at Man City who put his arm around me. That was amazing for me, for someone of his pedigree and international experience to do that.

“He saw the potential I had. He saw what I was doing in training. We started talking a bit more. I was asking him questions all the time and from there we have always kept in contact.

“I’ve played with him in games a few times, not loads, and now I’ve developed my game a bit more, hopefully we can do some good stuff together.”

Photo Credit: ChelseaFC/ X twitter

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Raheem Sterling makes Chelsea promise after his brace against Luton

August 26th, 2023 by Olasunkanmi Ibikunle

Raheem Sterling has vowed to help Chelsea by scoring goals for the west London club this season, saying “just 100% focus on scoring goals and helping my team”, adding that “It’s a target I had to set myself [being Chelsea’s top scorer this season].”

After his £50m transfer from Manchester City, last season Sterling scored nine goals in 38 appearances – his lowest return since his debut campaign with Liverpool.

This season, however, Sterling looks like he is getting back to his best. Pochettino has spoken to the forward throughout this pre-season and the beginning of the campaign as he looks to get the best out of him – which seems to be having the desired effect.

Sterling’s opening goal showed exactly why he is a key part of Gareth Southgate’s England squad when fully fit. He has not been in the past two Three Lions squads because of fitness issues, but it seems likely he will be included following his start to this season when the latest squad is named next week.

His second goal against Luton showed his calmness when in dangerous positions, and the pass for Jackson’s goal highlighted his quality.

If Chelsea are to get back to the top end of the table Sterling will be key to their hopes, as he is by far the most experienced and proven attacker they possess.

Sterling, who has started the campaign in excellent form, said he wants to be the club’s top scorer this season.

“It’s a target I had to set myself [being Chelsea’s top scorer this season] – it’s something I know I can do,” he told Sky Sports after the match.

“If I’m 100% at something, I know what I can do and that’s what I’m doing this year – just 100% focus on scoring goals and helping my team,” said Sterling.

“I want to get back to being obsessed with football. Just football 24/7 and nothing else and focus on top performances and goals and assists.”

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(Watch Goal on Video) Raheem Sterling scores again! 68’… Chelsea 2-0 Luton

August 25th, 2023 by Olasunkanmi Ibikunle

Stamford Bridge breathes a huge sigh of relief.

Chelsea have finally got a second goal to give them a cushion that their dominance has been crying out for.

Gusto picks up the ball on the right-hand-side of the pitch and squares it Sterling in the middle of the box. It was a cool, calm, collected finish for the England international.

Sterling had lost his marker in the box and the cross found him, he stroked it home unchallenged.

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Chelsea Player Ratings vs Southampton: Sterling, Kepa shine in Blues dismal outing

February 19th, 2023 by Olasunkanmi Ibikunle

Kepa Arrizabalaga – Pulled off a very strong opening save from Kamaldeen Sulemana and had his work cut out to have any hope of denying James Ward-Prowse’s free kick. Made a crucial save after 73 minutes to deny Adam Armstrong. 7.

Cesar Azpilicueta – Chelsea’s captain conceded the foul Ward-Prowse scored from with a lumbering foul. Otherwise was fairly solid despite being put under pressure by Southampton’s press. Took a nasty knock to the head midway through the second half and had to be replaced. 6.

Kalidou Koulibaly – Picked up an early yellow for a clumsy high foot on Paul Onuachu, and may have been fortunate not to see red. Understandably replaced at the halfway mark after looking close to earning a second yellow during the first 45 minutes. 4.

Benoit Badiashile – An uncertain moment within the first minutes of the game as he failed to clear the ball past Sulemana, who saw his shot saved by Kepa. The Frenchman took a while to warm into the game but eventually did. 6.

Ben Chilwell – Had some difficult aerial duties up against Southampton’s Onuachu but dealt well with the situation despite the height disparity. Once again provided a more willing display to impact the opposition box and looked fitter than against Borussia Dortmund. 7.

Enzo Fernandez – The World Cup-winner struggled to make his influence felt in the match for an extended period as Chelsea’s midfield particularly struggled in the first half. Still showed good ability on the ball. 5.

Mateo Kovacic – The Croatian had a difficult first half but looked much more comfortable when Chelsea controlled the ball in the second period and he could control the tempo of the game more easily. 5.

Noni Madueke – The 13th minute saw Madueke finally able to stretch his legs on the ball and he drove well up the pitch to force a save from Gavin Bazunu. Produced some moment of ingenuity. 6.

Joao Felix – A grittier display from the Atletico Madrid loanee as he was mostly suffocated by his ability to produce some flare on the ball. Didn’t have a consistent enough impact. 5.

Mason Mount – An outing full of industry and a few moments of incisive play but Mount was still not up to the standard he would expect. 6.


Wesley Fofana – A very confident display for his first competitive match since October. Perhaps slightly hesitant to release the ball quickly but a good performance. 7.

Raheem Sterling – Quickly had an impact on Chelsea’s left flank and probably proved to be the Blues’ best player on the pitch. Unfortunate to see his header cleared off the line but provided penetration on both wings. 7.

Mykhailo Mudryk – Had a limited impact following his introduction and had to play as wingback when Chilwell was replaced. 5.

Kai Havertz – Looked very lively as Chelsea looked for a goal and combined well with Sterling in advanced positions. Twice provided good passes for the winger. 7.

Trevoh Chalobah – Arrived on the pitch as Chelsea adjusted to a back three and helped the backline stay tight as the Blues pushed in search of an equaliser. 6.

Conor Gallagher – Went close with a late drive into the box in stoppage time but couldn’t find the net. 6.

Photo Credit: ChelseaFC/Twitter

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Raheem Sterling reveals his incredible goalscoring superstition

November 17th, 2022 by Olasunkanmi Ibikunle

Raheem Sterling has revealed his incredible superstition when he gets on a goalscoring run.

He said: “If I score, I’ll just try to wear the same trainers with my tracksuit to the next game.

“And if I don’t score it’s going back in the closet.

“When it comes to really big games, I try to get myself in the mindset of how I’m going to affect the game.

“The more I don’t think about the game and go about my everyday life the better, to try to block the noise out.

“One of my favourite apps to get ready for a game is YouTube, I like to escape a little in humour and distract myself from any nerves.”

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Raheem Sterling equals Didier Drogba’s record, nets hat-trick as Manchester City crush West Ham (Match Report)

August 10th, 2019 by Olasunkanmi Ibikunle

Raheem Sterling was the hero of the day after recording a hat-trick as Manchester City defeated West Ham United 5-0 to get their Premier League title defence off to an impressive start.

The breakthrough came after 25 minutes, with David Silva playing in Kyle Walker, who cut the ball back from the byline for Gabriel Jesus to deftly flick in.

Kevin De Bruyne was a growing influence for City, and his penetrating run and pass set up Sterling to make it 2-0 six minutes after half-time.

Jesus thought he had scored a third for City, only for his goal to be disallowed after Sterling was adjudged to be offside in the build-up, making it the first decision to be overturned by a Video Assistant Referee in the Premier League.

The England winger chipped Fabianski to give City their third before substitute Sergio Aguero stroked home a penalty at the second attempt to ensure the Hammers were beaten.

Manuel Pellegrini’s side were not without their chances on an afternoon where VAR’s input was felt on numerous occasions. Diop went close with a headed effort while Chicharito and Manuel Lanzini also saw efforts well saved.

A match played in blustery conditions at London Stadium saw West Ham United’s first VAR check of the 2019/20 season made after seven minutes, after a coming together between Manuel Lanzini and Rodrigo in the City penalty area. The home players, and supporters, wanted a spot-kick, but the checks came back with a negative.

Riyad Mahrez proved to be a tricky option for the away side down the right-wing with the Algerian twice going close in the first period. An early shot was well-saved by the returning Fabianski before the winger pulled an effort wide midway through the first period.

Substitute Sergio Aguero added a fourth with a penalty after his first spot-kick was saved by Lukasz Fabianski but it was ordered to be retaken due to encroachment.

Sterling had the final say, beating Fabianski to score the first PL hat-trick on opening weekend since Didier Drogba for Chelsea in 2010.

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