Chelsea beat Foxes to boost CL hopes

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Antonio Rudiger
Antonio Rudiger has scored half of his Premier League goals against Leicester (three out of six)

Chelsea beat Leicester City to boost their Champions League hopes – and leave the Foxes in danger of missing out.

Kelechi Iheanacho gave the Foxes hope but they did not create enough chances to deserve anything out of the game.

Chelsea’s win takes them up to third place in the table, while Liverpool could knock Leicester down to fifth place if they win at Burnley on Wednesday.

There was no doubt Thomas Tuchel’s side deserved their victory as Rudiger bundled home from close range from a corner.

Jorginho put the game beyond doubt with a penalty after Wesley Fofana clipped Timo Werner.

They had been unlucky not to be ahead at the break as Werner had a penalty appeal controversially turned down and two goals disallowed.

Iheanacho’s goal after good pressure from Wilfred Ndidi was not enough for Leicester, who now need to score at least three goals against Tottenham Hotspur on the final day or hope for Liverpool to drop points.

There was a late melee, with most of the players and the benches involved too – with Leicester’s Ricardo Pereira and unused substitute Daniel Amartey booked.

Chelsea’s revenge for Wembley boosts Champions League bid

Chelsea were disappointed to lose Saturday’s FA Cup final – a chance for Tuchel to win his first trophy in English football.

The Blues will have another chance to win a trophy – the big one – when they face Manchester City in the Champions League final in 11 days’ time.

They boosted their chances of being back in that tournament next season – and know a win at Aston Villa on the final day seals their top-four place.

Chelsea had felt aggrieved by a late ‘equaliser’ disallowed by VAR on Saturday.

And thousands of fans let their displeasure at VAR be known again as several decisions went against them in the first half at Stamford Bridge.

First Werner was caught by Youri Tielemans in the box, but was somehow penalised himself. There was no VAR review into that one.

Then Werner was clearly offside as he scored from Mason Mount’s first-time pass – with no need for VAR.

Werner thought he finally had his goal – and celebrated with the fans – before VAR correctly deemed he had bundled the ball in with his arm and not his head.

Chelsea’s frustrations lifted in the second half when Jamie Vardy inadvertently flicked a Ben Chilwell corner into the path of Rudiger, who scored with his thigh.

And then a VAR decision went Chelsea’s way when Fofana needlessly fouled Werner, with Jorginho scoring the penalty.

Chelsea did manage to set up a tense finale for themselves by trying to play their way out of defence with Mateo Kovacic losing the ball to Ndidi, who set up Iheanacho, but they held out.

Back down to earth for Leicester

Whatever happens now for Leicester, this is their second most successful season ever (behind the Premier League title-winning season of 2015-16) thanks to winning their first ever FA Cup.

If they do miss out on the top four, that victory will make it easier to take than last season’s collapse in the league that also saw them miss out.

But they will be highly frustrated, knowing a win at Stamford Bridge would have guaranteed their place in next season’s Champions League.

They need either Burnley or Crystal Palace to deny Liverpool, or to beat Spurs at least 3-0 on the final day (they need even more goals if the Reds win their games by more than one).

They were excellent on Saturday against Chelsea but disappointing in this game.

Iheanacho’s introduction after 60 minutes made them look a better team and he gave them hope with a first-time strike, and also forced a save from Edouard Mendy.

That goal gave the Nigerian the unusual distinction of being the first player to score a Premier League goal on all seven days within a single season.

They did have one late chance to level – and it was a big one – as an unmarked Ayoze Perez shot over the bar as the clock ticked 90.

Jorginho equals Milner record – match stats

  • It is the first time where the sides starting the day in the top three of the Premier League all played but did not win since 31 January 2017 (Arsenal, Spurs, Chelsea)
  • Leicester have won just two of their last 30 away league games against Chelsea (D11 L17)
  • Chelsea have scored 10 Premier League goals via corners this season, more than any other team. Only Leeds (11) have conceded more goals in this manner than Leicester (nine)
  • No player has scored more Premier League goals in a single campaign with 100% of them coming from the penalty spot than Jorginho’s seven (level with James Milner in 2016-17)
  • Marc Albrighton made his 200th Premier League appearance for Leicester City, becoming only the fourth player to reach this milestone for the club (also Jamie Vardy, Kasper Schmeichel, Muzzy Izzet)

helpHow to play

Rate players out of 10 throughout or after the game. The rater will close 30 minutes after the final whistle.

Rating range key1 = Give it up10 = Pure perfection

Chelsea

  1. Squad number16Player nameMendy

  2. Squad number24Player nameJames

  3. Squad number6Player nameThiago Silva

  4. Squad number2Player nameRüdiger

  5. Squad number28Player nameAzpilicueta

  6. Squad number7Player nameKanté

  7. Squad number5Player nameJorginho

  8. Squad number21Player nameChilwell

  9. Squad number10Player namePulisic

  10. Squad number19Player nameMount

  11. Squad number11Player nameWerner

  1. Squad number15Player nameZouma

  2. Squad number17Player nameKovacic

  3. Squad number18Player nameGiroud

Leicester City

  1. Squad number1Player nameSchmeichel

  2. Squad number27Player nameCastagne

  3. Squad number3Player nameFofana

  4. Squad number4Player nameSöyüncü

  5. Squad number11Player nameAlbrighton

  6. Squad number8Player nameTielemans

  7. Squad number25Player nameNdidi

  8. Squad number33Player nameThomas

  9. Squad number17Player nameAyoze Pérez

  10. Squad number10Player nameMaddison

  11. Squad number9Player nameVardy

  1. Squad number14Player nameIheanacho

  2. Squad number21Player nameRicardo Pereira

Line-ups

Chelsea

Formation 3-4-2-1

  • 16MendyBooked at 90mins
  • 24James
  • 6Thiago Silva
  • 2Rüdiger
  • 28AzpilicuetaBooked at 87minsSubstituted forZoumaat 88′minutes
  • 7KantéSubstituted forKovacicat 32′minutes
  • 5Jorginho
  • 21Chilwell
  • 10Pulisic
  • 19Mount
  • 11WernerSubstituted forGiroudat 90+1′minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Arrizabalaga
  • 3Alonso
  • 9Abraham
  • 15Zouma
  • 17Kovacic
  • 18Giroud
  • 20Hudson-Odoi
  • 22Ziyech
  • 33Emerson

Leicester

Formation 3-4-2-1

  • 1Schmeichel
  • 27Castagne
  • 3FofanaBooked at 82mins
  • 4Söyüncü
  • 11AlbrightonSubstituted forRicardo Pereiraat 67′minutesBooked at 90mins
  • 8Tielemans
  • 25NdidiBooked at 89mins
  • 33Thomas
  • 17PérezBooked at 32mins
  • 10MaddisonSubstituted forIheanachoat 60′minutes
  • 9Vardy

Substitutes

  • 5Morgan
  • 12Ward
  • 14Iheanacho
  • 18Amartey
  • 20Choudhury
  • 21Ricardo Pereira
  • 24Mendy
  • 26Praet
  • 28Fuchs

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