Thomas Tuchel took charge of Chelsea for the fourth time last night as his side made the trip to South Yorkshire to face rock bottom Sheffield United.
Despite their league position, the Blades had shown some signs of encouragement in recent weeks and came into the game off the back of their third win of the season against fellow strugglers West Brom.
Chelsea meanwhile were unbeaten since Thomas Tuchel took over and had most recently beaten Tottenham away through a Jorginho penalty.
It was the Blades who started the brighter of the two sides and had a great chance in the very first minute as Oliver Burke sliced his effort into the side netting.
They then though they had a penalty after about 10 minutes when Chris Basham was tripped in the area by Ben Chilwell but VAR overturned the decision for offside.
Chelsea looked a threat in the final third but it was getting to that point that was proving difficult as Sheffield United were quick to close them down all over the pitch.
Chris Wilder certainly would’ve been the happier of the two managers in the first half an hour but then Chelsea upped their game and started to have some joy down the left hand side.
Just as it looked like the Blades would be going in at half time on level terms, the Blues did make the break through as Timo Werner pulled the ball back to Mount who finished really well into the bottom right corner.
Half time and advantage Chelsea although Sheffield United were still well in the game.
The Blades came out after the break searching for a way back into the game and it didn’t take long for them to find it, although not in the way they would’ve expected.
A slightly heavy pass to Burke inside the box should’ve led to a routine clearance from Rudiger but the German defender instead opted to play back to his keeper, who had come off his line and saw the ball roll past him and into the bottom corner.
With Sheffield back on level terms, it appeared to be game on for the final 35 minutes although the lead was soon restored.
Timo Werner latched onto a really poor backwards pass from Basham and tried to go round the keeper only to be clattered to the ground by Ramsdale.
The referee initially said no penalty but was soon called over to the pitch side monitor where the correct decision was made.
Jorginho stepped up, did his usual hop-skip-jump, and sent the keeper the wrong way slotting home into the bottom right corner.
From that moment on, Sheffield United didn’t really look like getting back in the game and Chelsea were just taking the sting out of the game with some heavy possession.
It was becoming frustrating for the Blades towards the end as Chris Wilder had thrown four strikers up front but just couldn’t get a touch of the ball.
There was one final chance though deep into stoppage time as a long throw in was helped on towards Billy Sharp who went for goal in acrobatic fashion.
Mendy made the save though and just moments later, the final whistle was blown to confirm a third successive win for the Blues.
That’s enough to take them above Everton and West Ham and up into fifth, where they sit just a point behind Liverpool in fourth.
Sheffield United remain bottom though and it looks a very tough ask for them to avoid the drop this season as the gap to safety is now at 12 points.
Speaking to Sky Sports after the game, Sheffield United manager said “I don’t want a pat on the back for having a go, my team is always up against it in an incredibly tough division we are playing in.”
“We are fighting and punching, and we will keep that belief from now until the end of the season.”
“We have played Man City, Chelsea, Man United in three of the last four games, thankfully they are gone. No disrespect to the other teams we are going to play, and I hope they will be closer to get some results on the board. Whether it will be enough I don’t know.”
Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel was left proud of his team and said “We arrive in February in Sheffield, you know what’s waiting for you, it feels like a cup game when you arrive here, against a team that are full of energy and very direct and physical you have to accept that not all moments are easy in the game.”
“We stayed positive all the time with some difficult moments to overcome. We deserved the win in general, I’m happy with that and from that you build confidence and it’s always easier to proceed.”
“The first 15 minutes were difficult to overcome because they started with a lot of courage, but we had some moments where we could control the game in the middle, where we found the solution under pressure.