Chelsea, overhauled by coach Frank Lampard after its weekend loss to Arsenal, battled to a 1-1 draw at home to Aston Villa on Monday as Oliver Giroud’s first-half header was cancelled out shortly after the break by Anwar El Ghazi.
Lampard made six changes to the team that began Saturday’s 3-1 defeat to the Gunners – a performance he described as “lazy” – and his gamble on Giroud paid off when the France striker stooped to head in a cross by Ben Chilwell in the 34th minute.
It was Giroud’s third goal in four league starts this season, a contrast to a poor run for Timo Werner who has failed to score in the league since Nov. 7. The German, signed from RB Leipzig in the summer, appeared only as a substitute on Monday.
Villa drew level in the 50th minute when El Ghazi side-footed a volley at the far post through the legs of…