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Hazard's Marvellous Winner

By Gary Watton
September 26 2018

Listening to the first half on Blokesport, it sounded like Chelsea were quickest out of the traps and bossed the first half hour. However, in the absence of a lethal striker, they were always going to struggle to translate any superiority into goals. However, when I watched the second half, the match had been transformed into one of total dominance by the Kopites. It was they who deservedly took the lead after a close range strike from Daniel Sturridge.

Thereafter, the hosts looked to be in control. The blues could hardly string four passes together and they struggled to get out of their own half. Mignolet didn't have a save to make and his defence were not under siege. It looked increasingly unlikely that the visitors would score from open play. Therefore when a free kick came their way, they really needed to cash in, and cash in they did. Barkley rose well to force Mignolet into a sharp save but one in which he couldn't hold the ball. Consequently, Emerson was the first to react to the save to poke the ball into the net from point blank range.

Although Sturridge rattled the crossbar with an excellent effort, it was the away team that now had a bit of momentum. Then came the decisive moment of magic. Hazard fed Azpilicueta who then played in the Belgian for a jinking run, as he danced through the Liverpoo rearguard and powerfully planted his shot in the far corner. It was a special goal from a special player. Chelsea's fortunes this season, it seems, rest upon repeat performances from a fit and healthy Hazard. Not only is he possibly the best player in Britain, but he definitely compares alongside Cooke, Hudson, and Zola as the most skilful player Chelsea have ever fielded.

Chelsea then held their lead with surprising comfort against a deflated Liverfools. Can the latter bounce back in the imminent league match at Stamford Bridge? They will certainly have to work out a way of nullifying the flying Hazard, who's a Hazard by name and a hazard by nature.

 

Liverpool 1 CHELSEA 2; half time: 0-0

CHELSEA goal scorers: Emerson; Hazard

CHELSEA: Caballero; Cahill; Christensen; Azpilicueta; Emerson; Barkley; Fabregas; Morata; Willian; Moses; Kovacic. Used substitutes: Hazard; Kante; Luiz

 

LEADING SCORERS:

Hazard six

Pedro three

Willian two

Alonso one

Emerson one

Jorginho one

Kante one

Morata one

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