Maurizio Sarri hints at early Chelsea struggle

Kepa not at Courtois' level yet - Sarri looking to manage Chelsea expectations

Kepa not at Courtois' level yet - Sarri looking to manage Chelsea expectations

- Including caretakers, Maurizio Sarri is the ninth consecutive Chelsea manager to avoid defeat in his first Premier League game in charge of the club, with Avram Grant the last to lose his debut fixture (2-0 v Manchester United in September 2007).

Sarri, who became the club's 10th full-time manager in 10 years when he replaced the sacked Antonio Conte in the summer, saw his side take the lead with their first shot on target. But I think we did have a lot of unlucky situations. "In this moment we are not at the top of our potential but we had the capacity to suffer for 20 minutes in the first half". "Then in the second half the opponents were a bit exhausted and it was easier".

Chelsea were lacking dynamism and conviction as Huddersfield sat deep and proved hard to break down, but Pedro's driving run and pass out to Willian enabled the Brazilian to pick out Kante, who scuffed a left-footed volley into the ground and inside the far post in the 34th minute. But Jorginho appeared to have zero nerves when he stepped up to the spot to score Chelsea's second goal.

At the other end, Huddersfield's debutant goalkeeper Ben Hamer, signed on a free transfer from Leicester, made a nervous start and twice put the home side under pressure with misplaced passes from his penalty area.

Morata once again looked off the pace, but the performance was otherwise positive for Chelsea, who quickly forgot their beating by Man City.

Fresh off a World Cup triumph, N'Golo Kante has returned to Chelsea and looks set to function in a more advanced role under Sarri.

The winger, long linked with Real Madrid, made an impact after he entered with his dribbling ability immediately evident.

Sarri was spotted on numerous occasions during his career in Italy smoking in stadiums, or on the sidelines, such as the clip below where he lit up in the company of two bodyguards.

"It was a disappointing afternoon", said Wagner. "I have seen passion, desire, the spirit we usually have in our game".

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