Chelsea secured a valuable away goal but will rue the fact they could not convert their first-half dominance into more goals as Chedjou’s equaliser means there is all to play for in the return leg in three weeks’ time.
Fernando Torres’ early opener looked to be a sign of things to come as Chelsea carved open Galatasaray’s defence on many occasions, to the point where Mancini’s hand was forced and tactical substitution had to be made within half an hour.
But with that came re-organisation and whilst it settled the Turkish side for the remainder of the second half, it invigorated them in the second period, equalising just after the hour mark.
It was a gift of a goal for Chelsea to concede: Sneijder’s corner evaded everyone’s head and Chedjou latched onto the ball with his right foot three yards out.
It had undone all of Chelsea’s hard work up until that point. Fernando Torres’ goal was effective team-play: a surge down the left-wing through Azpilicueta, who found his compatriot in the penalty area and Torres steered home well.
The scoring for Chelsea should not have been done there. Willian had a shot blocked, as too Torres. Hajrovic’s wild effort flung wide of Cech’s goal, and it was the Champions League debutant who them had to make after 31 minutes; Mancini deemed him the culprit for Chelsea’s impressive start.
The match evened out very nicely after Chedjou’s leveller, to the point where Galatasaray perhaps were in the ascendency, certainly judging by the statistics which show the home side occupying 58% of the possession and having two more shots than Chelsea.
Mourinho sent a change in the pattern of the game, opting for caution by sending on Mikel for Schurrle, as the game drifted. Drogba’s night ended disappointingly early — hooked off after 80 minutes — but he is sure to get a warm reception in the reverse fixture next month.
Man of the Match
CESAR AZPILICUETA: Refreshingly positive and growing in stature as he continues to revel in keeping Ashley Cole out of the starting eleven. The right full-back is excelling being played out of position, showing an effective left-foot. Capable of defending resolutely — although perhaps not as convincingly as Ashley Cole, who can be remembered for his classic goal-line clearances — the man affectionately known as Dave is more of an attacking threat. Energetic and enthusiastic, he played Torres in with a delicate square ball to give Chelsea their away goal. 7/10
Jose Mourinho was in reflective mood: “The first half we had chances to kill game [whilst] in the second half they put pressure on us. They had attacking full-backs and powerful strikers, and they put pressure on us. But we were comfortable, until we conceded at the corner. I can’t complain… the performance of the players in a difficult place to play was amazing. It’s not a bad result but they are an experienced team with good strikers and we will have work to do.”