Matheus Pereira and Callum Robinson scored twice as struggling West Brom overwhelmed 10-man Chelsea and emphatically ended the 14-match unbeaten start to Thomas Tuchel ‘s tenure at Stamford Bridge.
The Baggies were as brilliant as the Blues, who had Thiago Silva sent off in the 29th minute, were abject.
The result moves the 19th-placed side to within seven points of 17th-placed Newcastle, and even if they do not manage the improbable and escape relegation, they will look back on this day with great pride.
Tuchel said he “did not see the second half coming”. His side took the lead through Christian Pulisic in the 27th minute, but then lost Thiago and conceded twice in first-half stoppage time before West Brom inflicted further damage after the break.
“There is no need to concede five goals when you have our quality,” he told BBC Sport. “We are all in on that – myself included.
“We could not adapt to the situation, which is a surprise as we were leading. We are normally confident enough to defend, but we were sloppy and kept making big mistakes. It’s tough to digest.
“I did not see that second half coming. We tried to give a bit of security with a back three, but we were never in a flow. We had some chances but we didn’t defend well.”
Thiago Silva who had just returned from two months out with an injury. He took ‘one for the team’ when he pulled back Pereira on the edge of the area, but his second booking and sending off was inexcusable for a player of his stature.
Striker Timo Werner came into the match short of confidence and having missed a ‘sitter’ for Germany against North Macedonia. He probably wished he reacted as quickly as Pulisic did for the Blues goal, although he did set up Mount’s goal.
By that stage, both he and his team-mates were probably wishing they were still on international duty.
A side who had conceded only two goals in Tuchel’s previous 14 games were outwitted and embarrassed by one who had struggled to score this season.
Chelsea have four days to recover before they face Porto in the Champions League quarter-finals.
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