Five things learned as Chelsea slump to Villa defeat

Jose Mourinho Chelsea

Fabian Delph's backheel was the difference in a feisty 1-0 win for Aston Villa, which saw two players and Mourinho sent off for the visitors

Torres continues to look the odd one out

After Torres scored his first goal since January against Galatasaray, there was renewed hope that the Spaniard had turned the corner into good form once more. But such belief has proved unfounded on more than one occasion in his Chelsea career, and so it turned out as Torres put in as inept and toothless performance as you could see from a top four striker. He was desperate when in possession, poor with his passing, and wayward with his shooting - missing the target from all five of his efforts.

There was a lack of creativity from Chelsea

Chelsea seemed to really struggle to pose a significant threat to what was a resolute Villa defence. Eden Hazard was, as always, the chief threat, but if anything proved just why the Blues can't just rely on the former Lille man it was this game against Paul Lambert's men. Perhaps this match would have been the perfect chance to throw in Mohamed Salah in the hope of unlocking the determined home side. The tricky Egyptian has made just 3 appearances, and no starts, since arriving in January.

Was this an example of Mourinho setting a bad example for his side?

After weeks of telling the media that Chelsea were in no way favourites, the Blues players put in a performance that would do little to dispel such a belief. On top of that was the fact that Mourinho not only struggled to contain the aggression of his Chelsea players but also got carried away himself to the extent that he too was sent from the field. 

The suspensions against Arsenal may be a bigger blow than this loss 

Not only did the three sending offs impact the fixture at Villa, they will also, and this may be a key point, deprive the Chelsea side of two of their regular midfielders and possibly manager against rivals Arsenal. Such a fixture is naturally a must win game, their last big home contest of the season, and if the Gunners turn up at Stamford Bridge in form, Mourinho's impressive unbeaten record at home may be at real risk.

A tale of two red away days

What was particularly telling about Saturday's fixtures was that one of the title challengers went down to ten men away from home and emerged with a professional, determined performance to claim the three points, while another saw red and then imploded, leaving this round of fixtures with a loss. Considering that Villa had struggled so much at home while City's opponents Hull were a really strong  outfit at the KC Stadium, only makes the performance even more impressive, at least for Manuel Pellegrini's outfit.

Register for CHELSEA team updates

Register for ASTON VILLA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch