Chelsea suffered a one-nil loss against Everton on Saturday evening, thanks to a first-half penalty by midfielder Gylfi Sigurdsson.
Frank Lampard’s men who were on a 14-game unbeaten run before the tie and could have taken the top spot at least temporarily with a win here, but they were beaten by a battling Everton side, urged on by a raucous Goodison Park crowd.
With James Rodriguez sidelined through injury, Ancelloti set up his team in a 3-4-3 formation that saw Mason Holgate and Sigurdsson come into the side. Chelsea, meanwhile, were forced to replace the injured Hakim Ziyech with Mateo Kovacic.
The Blues started the brighter of both sides as they controlled the ball for the opening exchanges and offered Everton no time to string passes together.
But despite enjoying the bulk of the possession, it was the home side who went in front first. Ancelotti’s men were awarded a penalty in the 20th minute after Edouard Mendy had clattered into Calvert-Lewin in the box, which Gylfi Sigurdsson coolly dispatched to hand Everton a shock lead.
The hosts looked to respond almost immediately with Pickford saving two efforts from Reece James in quick succession. The Toffees could have added a second in the 40th minute, but Richarlison was denied by a smart Mendy save.
Chelsea continued to send in crosses into the box for the rest of the first half as they sought a way back into the game, but they were unable to find a breakthrough.
The visitors again emerged from the break with greater intensity, but they still couldn’t find a way past an Everton side determined to play patiently and hit their visitors on the counter. And in the 63rd minute, Ancelotti’s men thought that they had won a second penalty after Calvert-Lewin had been fouled by Ben Chilwell following a quick Everton break. But to the relief of Frank Lampard, VAR judged that the Everton striker had strayed offside when Iwobi’s pass arrived.
However, the incident proved to irrelevant in the grand scheme of things, with Everton holding on resolutely at the back to claim all three points and hand Chelsea their first Premier League loss in six games.
The result means that Chelsea will remain at least two points below leaders Tottenham and Liverpool who play on Sunday, while Everton moves above Manchester United on goal difference.
Chelsea are back in action next against Wolves while Everton head to the King Power Stadium to take on Leicester City.