There was a clear and obvious game plan from the word go -- sit behind the ball and hope for the best whenever they had a sniff going forward. For large portions of the first half that ideology was boding well for them as they kept Liverpool out and did the simple things well. At times in the first half, you could even argue they were the ones controlling the narrative in the middle of the park.
The issue with such a pessimistic style of play is that you aren't going to earn many fans from it, and when it doesn't go well, they'll let you know why. There was no urgency whatsoever from the hosts to the point where it felt like they weren't playing with any forwards at all. The Blues struggled against the counter, they surrendered any kind of hope in the possession game and they didn't really have a cohesive understanding of their own formation once Liverpool really got going. Another error from Kepa Arrizabalaga added insult to injury.
Manager rating out of 10
5 -- They may not have quite tuck 10 men behind the ball, but Frank Lampard needs to accept some kind of responsibility for the utterly abysmal attacking display that Chelsea put out this afternoon. He took a risk in not following in the footsteps of Leeds' approach to playing Liverpool and the former England international appeared to botch his instructions for both Mason Mount and N'Golo Kante, both of whom seemed largely confused at what their roles were supposed to be.
Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best, players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)
GK Kepa Arrizabalaga, 4 -- His alertness was called into question early on, and in the second half, he proved why Chelsea are looking around for a new keeper after he gifted the ball to Liverpool for the goal that made it 2-0.
DF Reece James, 5 -- The young prospect exhibited real confidence in his tackling but as the game went on his composure faded, with the nail in the coffin being his poor tracking for the opening goal.
DF Andreas Christensen, 4 -- The Dane went from a steady enough performance after reading the ball well on a handful of plays to complete disaster as he dragged Sadio Mane to the ground with a rugby tackle to earn himself a red card just before half-time.
DF Kurt Zouma, 6 -- He may not be the most technical player in the world but Zouma was efficient with his energy, showed good timing and didn't make many errors whatsoever.
DF Marcos Alonso, 4 -- The Spaniard relies far too heavily on others to cover him with overlapping runs and his own frailties were exposed when he switched off for Mane's first goal.
MF N'Golo Kante, 5 -- Couldn't settle into the role of being the man tasked with pushing Chelsea into the final third, whether it be through misplaced passes or getting swarmed whenever he was in possession.
MF Jorginho, 4 -- There was absolutely no creativity in his play, he was rigid in his distribution, and he topped it off with a dreadful penalty.
MF Mateo Kovacic, 6 -- It's obvious to see that Kovacic shields the ball better than most in this Chelsea team, and he matches that up nicely with a certain calmness in midfield.
FW Timo Werner, 5 -- The German superstar managed to win a penalty for his side but aside from that, he was largely ineffective.
FW Mason Mount, 5 -- Performed far below expectations and was often weak both on the ball and inconsistent off of it with his positional play.
DF Fikayo Tomori, 7 -- His great aerial play was matched by the sort of grit that should earn the 22-year-old a place in Lampard's starting XI.
MF Ross Barkley, N/R -- Wasn't given enough time to make a real impact with those around him not forcing the issue.
FW Tammy Abraham, N/R -- Abraham's 84th minute cut-in and strike was easily one of the most interesting moments of the game for Chelsea.