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9-man Chelsea loses 3-2 to Burnley to open EPL title defense

first_imgLONDON — Chelsea had two players sent off and lost to Burnley 3-2 in the first match of its English Premier League title defense on Saturday, intensifying the concerns surrounding the champions after their frustrating offseason in the transfer market.Captain Gary Cahill was shown a straight red card for a studs-first lunge in the 13th minute, then the champions conceded three goals in a 20-minute period before halftime.ADVERTISEMENT Teen gunned down in Masbate Jeremie Boga, a 20-year-old French forward, was even given a debut. It lasted only 18 minutes, when he was sacrificed as Conte reorganized following Cahill’s sending off.“It was a pity because our fight in the second half was very good,” Conte said. “But our first half, we kept losing our heads. After the red card we lost our heads, conceded two goals and then it’s very difficult to change the final result.”Chelsea, which won 17 of its 19 home games last season, became the second straight team to begin its league title defense with a loss, after Leicester last season.Fabregas and Cahill will be suspended for Chelsea’s tough second match of the season, away to Tottenham at Wembley Stadium next weekend.Conte is desperate for reinforcements in the final three weeks of the transfer window.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ LATEST STORIES “The club is trying to do the best,” Conte said. “I am not worried, I am ready to fight with these players. I repeat: It is important for us to concentrate on our work, to be focused every day in training, and to try to work in our best way. No excuses.”Burnley was expected to struggle this season after losing arguably its best two players in the offseason, defender Michael Keane and striker Andre Gray.“A lot was made of our away form last season,” Vokes said. “So that result is huge.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Ai-Ai delas Alas on Jiro Manio: ‘Sana pinahalagahan niya ang naitulong ko’ Vilma Santos, Luis Manzano warn public of fake account posing as her 787 earthquakes recorded in 24 hours due to restive Taal Volcano 2 nabbed in Bicol drug stings Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite 787 earthquakes recorded in 24 hours due to restive Taal Volcano Neymar braced for PSG debut and French culture shock End of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legend Albay to send off disaster response team to Batangas Striker Sam Vokes scored two of them by converting crosses, either side of a stunning volleyed goal by left back Stephen Ward.Chelsea improved after halftime. Alvaro Morata, on as a second-half substitute, reduced the deficit in his first league start since a club-record move from Real Madrid for 58 million pounds ($75 million).FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’Any hope of an unlikely comeback looked to have disappeared when midfielder Cesc Fabregas was red-carded in the 81st after receiving his second booking. However, David Luiz ensured a tense finish when he volleyed home in the 88th after being teed up by the influential Morata.The result will not improve the mood of Chelsea manager Antonio Conte, who hasn’t hidden his frustration at failing to significantly bolster his squad in the offseason. With Eden Hazard, Tiemoue Bakayoko, and Pedro Rodriguez injured and Victor Moses suspended, Chelsea had a threadbare match-day 18. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Marcosian mode: Duterte threatens to arrest water execs ‘one night’ View commentslast_img read more