Alassane Plea and Jonas Hofmann were among the goals, but Yann Sommer was the real star of the show as Borussia Mönchengladbach held English Premier League club Chelsea to a 2-2 draw on Christian Pulisic's return to Germany - the Foals' final pre-season friendly before the start of the 2019/20 campaign.
Borussia Mönchengladbach 2-2 Chelsea
Goals: 1-0 Plea (13'), 2-0 Hofmann (39') 2-1 Abraham (pen. 59'), 2-2 Barkley (pen. 85')
In an open first period, Marcus Thuram went close to giving Gladbach an early lead, but fired wide when in behind the Chelsea defence. Chelsea's Mason Mount headed down and over, and Sommer denied Tammy Abraham, before Plea punished a poor clearance from Kepa to give Gladbach the lead. Chelsea threw everything at Sommer for the next half-hour, but there was just no beating the Switzerland No.1, who pulled off superb saves from the likes of former Borussia Dortmund star Pulisic and Cesar Azpilicueta. The visitors were then caught cold by a blistering counter as Plea threaded in Hofmann to give Gladbach a two-goal lead at the break.
The Sommer Show resumed after the restart, with the Gladbach custodian getting a toe to Mateo Kovacic's low strike, before turning away an inadvertent goal-bound header from teammate Matthias Ginter and reacting brilliantly to push away another Mount strike. Abraham did manage to break the deadlock from the penalty spot, though, with almost an hour gone. Gladbach coach Marco Rose rang the changes, but tired legs set in as Chelsea pressed for the equaliser. Ross Barkley missed a golden opportunity to level following a mistake by Stefan Lainer, only to make amends from the penalty spot moments later after Gladbach substitute Keanan Bennetts had brought down Mount.
Gladbach: Sommer (c) – Lainer (Johnson 77'), Ginter, Elvedi (Cuisance 76'), Wendt (Beyer 75') – Neuhaus (Embolo 76'), Strobl (Benetts 75'), Zakaria (Benes 66') – Hofmann (Raffael 76') – Plea, Thuram (Herrmann 46')
Unused subs: Sippel, Lang, Poulsen
Out: Kramer (knee), Villalba (muscular)
Doubtful: Doucoure (thigh), Embolo (match fitness), Stindl (shin)
Chelsea: Kepa – Azpilicueta (c), Christensen, Zouma, Emerson (Alonso 66') – Jorginho, Kovacic (Kenedy 67') – Pedro (Kante 72'), Mount, Pulisic (Giroud 67') – Abraham (Barkley 67')
Unused subs: Willy Caballero, Karlo Ziger, David Luiz, Tomori, Zappacosta
Out: Loftus-Cheek (Achilles), Rüdiger (knee)
Doubtful: Hudson-Odoi (Achilles)
Watch: Christian Pulisic, made in the Bundesliga
As it happened
FULL-TIME! GLADBACH 2-2 CHELSEA
And so it ends all square. Gladbach showed some real promise at times as an attacking unit, but were indebted to Yann Sommer for repelling wave after wave of Chelsea attacks. The Swiss keeper was SO good it took two second-half penalties to finally end his resistance.
Now onto the serious business for the Foals, who travel to Sandhausen in the DFB Cup first round next weekend, before taking on Schalke on Bundesliga Matchday 1 a week later.
85' GOAL! GLADBACH 2-2 CHELSEA
Barkley atones for that earlier miss, firing home off the post, and Chelsea are indeed level. You have to say it has been coming...
84' PENALTY TO CHELSEA!
Bennetts hauls down Mount in the box, and Chelsea have the chance to level from the spot...
79' GLADBACH GET AWAY WITH ONE
Ross Barkley drags wide with the goal at his mercy after a mistake by Stefan Lainer. That ball was loose with a capital L by the Gladbach defender. We'll put that one down to tired legs.
73' FRESH GLADBACH LEGS
Marco Rose rolls the dice as Fabian Johnson, Breel Embolo, Jordan Beyer, Raffael, Mickael Cuisance and Englishman Keanan Bennetts enter the fray. Messrs Plea, Neuhaus, Wendt, Strobl, Hofmann and Elvedi get the hook. Kante replaces Pedro for Chelsea.
71' IT'S ALL GONE QUIET
Those changes appear to have stalled Chelsea's momentum. Gladbach yet to get going in the second half...
67' CHELSEA CHANGES
Marcos Alonso, Ross Barkley, Olivier Giroud and Kenedy join the action for Chelsea, with Emerson, Tammy Abraham, Mateo Kovacic and former Dortmund man Christian Pulisic making way.
66' GLADBACH CHANGE
Denis Zakaria has put in a good shift in midfield today. On comes Laszlo Benes.
59' GOAL! GLADBACH 2-1 CHELSEA
Abraham sinks the penalty past Sommer, sending Gladbach's last line of defence the wrong way, to reduce the arrears. It was always going to take a set-piece or something extra special to beat him today.
58' PENALTY TO CHELSEA!
Chelsea's persistence earns a penalty as Kovacic is sent tumbling in the box...
53' SUPER-HUMAN SOMMER
You'll have to forgive us if we're sounding like a broken record, but SOMMER! First, the Gladbach goalkeeper springs to his side to claw away an inadvertent goal-bound header from teammate Matthias Ginter. Abraham puts the rebound wide, before Chelsea come again through Pedro. The cross is good, Mount's connection is sweet, but the save is stunning.
48' SOMMER UP TO HIS OLD TRICKS
Chelsea should score as Mateo Kovacic darts through the middle and into the box. He only has Yann Sommer to beat, but ONCE AGAIN the Gladbach stopper keeps it out - this time diverting the ball away with his outstretched boot. The man means business!
46' SECOND HALF! GLADBACH 2-0 CHELSEA
The ball's rolling again at Borussia-Park. One change for the hosts, with the impressive Marcus Thuram making way for German speedster Patrick Herrmann. Chelsea are as they were.
45' HALF-TIME! GLADBACH 2-0 CHELSEA
Gladbach haven't had things entirely their own way, but they have been clinical. Special mention to Yann Sommer, too, for keeping out the Chelsea onslaught midway through the half.
39' GOAL! GLADBACH 2-0 CHELSEA
Gladbach have been riding their luck, but they break in devastating fashion to double their lead. Pure determination from Jonas Hofmann once he collects Alassane Plea's pass, and a tidy finish to boot!
37' MOUNT CHANCE
Mason Mount gets the better of Nico Elvedi, but drives his effort straight at Sommer. The half-time whistle can't come soon enough for the Foals...
34' SOMMER AGAIN!
Azpilicueta chances his arm from the edge of the area, but Sommer is in no mood to be beaten and gathers up the attempt at the second attempt. Gladbach are very much on the back foot...
29' SOMMER THWARTS PULISIC
Christian Pulisic takes advantage of some uncertain Gladbach defending. He skips clear and drives goalwards, but Sommer is equal to the task. Another save of the highest order from the Swiss custodian.
20' PULISIC ON THE PROWL
Gladbach know all about Christian Pulisic, but the American still catches the hosts cold. The ball eventually finds its way to Pedro, but his attempt from 12 yards fails to test Sommer. The Foals were caught out there.
17' GLADBACH ON TOP
Chelsea are all over the shop defensively. Again it's Thuram darting in behind before whipping over a cross that Azpilicueta does well to clear.
13' GOAL! GLADBACH 1-0 CHELSEA!
Alassane Plea draws first blood! Kepa gets his kick all wrong, and the Gladbach man makes no mistake with his finish. The Chelsea stopper won't want to see a replay of that later.
10' SOMMER TO THE RESCUE
Matthias Ginter has his pockets picked by Pedro. The Spaniard finds Tammy Abraham, who is thwarted by a fine Sommer save. Superb stuff!
9' THE ROSE EFFECT
Marco Rose promised attacking football, and it looks as though his players are already under the former Red Bull Salzburg coach's spell. Bodes well...
6' MOUNT MASON
Let-off for Gladbach as Mason Mount meets a Pedro cross, but heads into the ground and over. Yann Sommer was beaten.
Marcus Thuram gets in behind the Chelsea defence... he winds up, but lashes wide of the far post. Great pace and touch from the Gladbach newcomer. Wonder if his World Cup-winning Dad, Lilian, is watching...?
We're underway at Borussia Park!
EX-FOAL CHRISTENSEN RETURNS
Andreas Christensen made 62 Bundesliga appearances while on loan from Chelsea at Gladbach between 2015 and 2017. The Denmark international - and his current employers - have a lot to thank the Foals for in shaping him into a top-drawer defender.
This will be new Gbach coach Marco Rose's first game at his new home. "It's a friendly against a top team, one that we're looking forward to," said the 42-year-old. "It's about building understanding in the team and above all getting that competitive edge."
THURAM STARTS FOR FOALS
Summer signing Marcus Thuram starts the game with fellow Frenchman Alassane Plea leading the line.
Ex-Borussia Dortmund man Christian Pulisic is in the visitors' line-up today after joining the Blues ahead of the coming English Premier League season. You can find out how he developed into a world-class player in the Bundesliga here!
It's a prestigious visitor to Borussia Park today as Mönchengladbach host Chelsea, who have iconic former midfielder Frank Lampard in the dug-out.