Reece James next to Mikel in unwanted Chelsea’s Premier League ranks

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Obi Mike, Reece JamesGetty/Goal

Reece James has become the youngest Chelsea player after John Obi Mikel to see red in a Premier League encounter.

The England international was given his marching orders as the Blues played out a 1-1 draw with Liverpool at Anfield on Saturday.

This after goalmouth scramble resulted in the right-back using his arm to keep out Sadio Mane’s effort.

Although referee Anthony Taylor missed the incident, he was instructed by the VAR to have a look at his pitchside monitor and review.

He did and showed James the way out while awarding a penalty to Jurgen Klopp’s men which was converted by Mohamed Salah after sending Edouard Mendy the wrong direction.

Not only did the Englishman (21y 263d) become the first Chelsea player to be sent off at Anfield in the league since Frank Lampard in 2009, he became the second-youngest Blues player to be sent off.

Mikel (20y 154d) is the club’s youngest player to see red, against Manchester United in 2007.

Notwithstanding their numerical disadvantage, the Stamford Bridge giants picked up an away point to continue their unbeaten run in the 2021-22 campaign.

In his post-match reaction, manager Thomas Tuchel claimed that the combination of conceding a goal and going down to 10 men was a tough pill to swallow.

“Double punishment is always super hard and it was a bit of a spoiler, but I think it’s the rule now if the referee says he denies a clear goal with his hand,” he told the club website.

“I don’t like these early red cards in general, not just when it’s us but when I’m watching on TV, because for me it spoils the game.

“Nobody wants to see that for 45 minutes; they want to see a high-level game.

“The situation itself, I can understand the decision and I’m not saying it’s a wrong decision, but I did not like the way the referee checked it.

“He checked only the image which showed the contact and then it was a clear decision.

“On the bench we saw also the whole movement and you saw it was a deflection at short distance, it comes off his hip to his arm, the arm is not in a super unnatural arm position.”

Chelsea take on Aston Villa in their next league game on September 11.