Chelsea were made to work way harder than expected to overcome Norwich City in their 3rd round FA Cup replay at Stamford Bridge, winning 5-3 on penalties after Jamal Lewis’s 94th-minute equalizer to cancel out Batshuayi’s 55th-minute tap-in forced the game into extra time.
Chelsea started as the better side, applying a lot of pressure on the Norwich with Willian involved heavily. However, it was Drinkwater who came the closest when his shot in the 25th minute from long range was tipped onto the bar. Norwich almost took the lead against the run of play when Michy gave the ball away cheaply and Nelson Oliveira’s half-volley skimmed the crossbar. 10 minutes into the second half, Chelsea finally ended their woes in front of goal as Kenedy was given far too much time and space on the left to pick out Batshuayi who finished easily. Norwich responded brilliantly and were unlucky to not have equalized when Murphy hit the post in the 61st minute. Both sides tried to get a goal as Maddison and substitute Morata going close. However, it was Lewis who finally equalized right at the death, with a deft header from a Klose cross.
Chelsea tried to force the issue in extra time as Norwich started to tire, but lacked the clinical edge in the final third. Conte introduced Hazard to prevent a penalty shootout, but the real talking points came in the 117th and 121st minutes as Pedro and Morata were respectively sent off. Pedro got a second booking for stopping a Norwich counter with a cynical foul, having been booked in normal time for diving, whereas Morata got 2 yellows in 5 seconds for diving and subsequent dissent.
Caballero’s save off Oliveira in the shootout and all 5 Chelsea players scoring their spot kicks ensured Conte’s men progressed to the next round. Also, if you want to bet on this weekend’s Premier League action, you can use free betting sites like this.
Here are how the Chelsea players have been rated from their unconvincing win against Norwich City.
Willy Caballero- 7/10
Except one good save, had nothing to do in 120 minutes. Made an excellent stop in the shootout, though.
Davide Zappacosta- 6.5/10
Not questioned much defensively throughout the game, and produced an excellent cross in the second half of extra time that Morata failed to bury.
Cesar Azpilicueta- 7/10
Was at his usual best, solid and no-nonsense.
Ethan Ampadu- 6.5/10
The young defender got a rare chance and didn’t put a foot wrong all game, albeit he wasn’t tested enough.
David Luiz- 6.5/10
Swept up any loose balls and didn’t venture forward as often as he usually does.
Fired a good ball across the goal to get the assist for Batshuayi’s goal.
Tiemoue Bakayoko- 6.5/10
A slightly better game from the former Monaco man as he got more license in a relatively unchallenged midfield since Norwich mainly played on the backfoot.
Danny Drinkwater- 6/10
Did nothing of note except an excellent strike that cannoned off the crossbar.
Not involved as much as he should’ve been and got himself sent off after getting 2 yellows, one for diving and the other for a very poor challenge as Norwich broke forward.
Chelsea’s best player on the night, the Brazilian was at the heart of everything Chelsea did. Gave the ball away poorly at times but always looked like a threat whenever he ran with the ball.
Michy Batshuayi- 5.5/10
Got on the scoresheet and that’s about it. Non-existent hold-up play and nearly gifted Norwich a goal with a terrible back pass.
Alvaro Morata (Michy Batshuayi 81’) – 4/10
Failed to get on the end of a cross in the 90th minute to seal the game, before squandering two more great chances from close range before getting sent off.
Andreas Christensen (Ethan Ampadu 81’) – 6.5/10
Played as the furthest centre back and made an excellent run in extra time but couldn’t pick out a teammate at the end of it.
N’Golo Kante (Kenedy 86’) – 6.5/10
Did what he does best, won tackles and broke play up. Made some good forward runs from time to time.
Eden Hazard (Danny Drinkwater 100’) – 6/10
Combined well with Morata on one occasion, but looked a bit off colour.
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