Middlesbrough 0-2 Chelsea in the FA Cup quarter-finals: Chelsea advanced to the FA Cup semi-finals with a 2-0 win against Middlesbrough in the Championship on Saturday.
Due to the club’s ownership problems, Blues supporters haven’t had many reasons to be optimistic recently, but their enhanced chances of winning silverware will give them something to cheer about.
Boro XI: Lumley, Dijksteel, Taylor, Fry, Tavernier, Howson, McNair, Crooks, Connolly, Jones, Balogun
Chelsea XI: Mendy, Azpilicueta, Thiago Silva, Rudiger, Sarr, Kovacic, Loftus-Cheek, Mount, Ziyech, Lukaku, Pulisic
On the 15th minute, Romelu Lukaku put the visitors ahead by converting Mason Mount’s wonderful ball.
Middlesbrough came back strongly, possibly being the superior team for the next 15 minutes, but it just takes a minute when you have players of Hakim Ziyech’s caliber on your squad.
Mount slid the ball into the path of Chelsea’s Moroccan wizard as the Blues caught Boro off guard. If you’ve ever watched Ziyech’s showreel, you’ll know what happened next.
Half-time and @ChelseaFC are in front: Statistics below
73 mins: Chelsea win a free-kick on the left, which Mount sends onto the head of Werner, whose header is saved.
69 mins: More good play for Boro. Jones plays not one but two one-twos get into the area and send a low cross too close to Mendy.
69 mins: Chelsea bring Timo Werner and Ngolo Kante on for Pulisic and Kovacic.
Despite the fact that he scored, Lukaku was largely invisible for the whole 84 minutes against Boro.
The former Inter Milan striker partially explained why he has become a cup rotation player at Stamford Bridge, rather than being one of the first names on the squad sheet, as his £97.5 million price tag implied.
In that regard, the 28-year-old lacks the speed to go in behind and offer an outlet, while his target man characteristics have also been questioned since his return to the Premier League. Cup tournaments offer the ideal environment for Lukaku to reclaim his best form and continue to adapt to Tuchel’s style.
Mason Mount was instrumental in Chelsea’s triumph by assisting both goals. The England international was allowed the ability to drift out wide behind Lukaku, creating plenty of space for his teammates.
Continue >>> Middlesbrough 0-2 Chelsea
Mount has previously played a deeper central role, and his performance against Boro demonstrated that he is most effective as a no.10. His energy, inventiveness, and goal-scoring ability – which he did not display on Saturday night – are what make him such a valuable player for the Blues.
Wait for the 5 things we’ve learned from this game…