Chelsea finished their season on a high note as they managed to clinch a major silverware. The Blues thrashed Arsenal by 4-1 in the final of the Europa League. Olivier Giroud and Pedro scored one goal apiece while Eden Hazard notched up a brace to seal the match for the west London club. Alex Iwobi scored the only goal for Arsenal in what turned out to be a consolation at the end.
The Blues started to show their intent from the very first minute of the match and slowly but surely took the game in their stride. After a goalless first half, Chelsea’s ploy of consistent pressing broke the deadlock as Giroud found the back of the net from Emerson’s low lying cross in the 49th minute. Pedro doubled the lead with a sweet strike to divert a pinpoint assist from Hazard into the bottom corner of the Arsenal goal. The influential Belgian turned the goalscorer in the 65th minute as he slotted it past Petr Cech from the spot to make the scoreline 3-0 for the Blues after Ainsley Maitland-Niles brought Giroud down in the box. Arsenal tried to make a comeback into the match as Iwobi pulled one back with a brilliant volley in the 69th minute.
However, Hazard, who might be playing his last match for Chelsea, put the final nail in Arsenal’s hopes of winning a major trophy this season with another goal from close range off Giroud’s cross. This win might be of great significance regarding Maurizio Sarri’s future.
Here is how the Chelsea players were rated from their massive win against Arsenal.
Kepa Arrizabalaga: 6.5
Had a rather quiet game with only a couple of saves to be made throughout the match. Had no chance of stopping the goal from being scored.
César Azpilicueta: 7
A fantastic defensive display from the Spaniard held off Aubameyang for the most parts of the match. His passing was accurate as well and helped in initiating attacks.
Andreas Christensen: 7
His substantial presence in the backline ensured the win for his side. Did not give Lacazette even a sniff at goal.
David Luiz: 6
Looked a little shaky in the second half after a solid display in the first. Should have done better to prevent Iwobi from scoring the goal.
Emerson Palmieri: 7
Got into the opposition half more than once with his darting runs down the left flanks. Delivered a good low lying cross to find Giroud as he headed past Cech to break the deadlock.
Looked a little subdued in the first half. Found his rhythm as the game progressed.
Mateo Kovačić: 6.5
Kept getting behind the likes of Xhaka and Torreira and broke down the attacks with timely interceptions. Looked a little fatigued in the second half.
N’Golo Kanté: 7
Initiated several attacks with his accurate passing. His work rate was, as always, commendable.
Tormented the whole Arsenal defence and made them chase him all over the final third. Found the back of the net with an opportunistic strike off Hazard’s pinpoint assist.
Eden Hazard: 10
Dished out a scintillating display in what was possibly his last match for Chelsea. Deceived the likes of Maitland-Niles and Koscielny with absolute ease. A heroic performance on the night from the Belgian maestro as he finished with two goals and one assist to his name.
Olivier Giroud: 9
Scored the first goal of the match against his former employers with absolute finesse as he headed past Cech. Was brought down in the box to provide the opportunity for Hazard’s first goal. Put through a superb pass in the path of Hazard for the Belgian’s second of the match.
Did well for his limited time on the pitch after he replaced Pedro.
Ross Barkley: NA
Played too little to warrant a rating.
Davide Zappacosta: NA
Played too little to warrant a rating.
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