Match Report: Chelsea advance on penalties

Match Report: Chelsea advance on penalties

Southampton saw their Carabao Cup run end with a penalty shootout defeat in the round of 16 at Stamford Bridge, following an entertaining 1-1 draw.

Match Report: Chelsea advance on penalties

The two heavily rotated sides took to the pitch with great intention and impetus, and the first 10-15 minutes were certainly played at a real break-neck pace, though without any real quality in the final third.

Chelsea had half-chances from Saúl (on a corner) and saw a Havertz long shot miss by just inches. Then the pace dropped, as did whatever quality was there initially, and the game devolved into a mess of fouls, turnovers, and imprecise passing.
Just when it looked like we’d head into the break scoreless, Kai Havertz nodded in an Hakim Ziyech corner thanks in part to some terrible defending from the visitors.

Chelsea’s lead didn’t last long, however, as Southampton equalized barely a minute after the restart, with Che Adams taking advantage of a couple of mistakes, including Kepa Arrizabalaga unable to make the initial save on Kyle Walker-Peters’ low drive.

The equalizer propelled the game into a classic “proper cup tie” with chances coming thick and fast at either end. Havertz, Barkley, and Saúl all had good chances while Kepa redeemed himself with a good save on a long shot. Both head coaches made changes, but the flow of the game didn’t change much. Saúl had another couple of good looks, and Kepa made another good save after a lucky bounce found Will Smallbone for a close-range header.

With neither team able to beat the goalkeeper again in regulation, the private duel between Kepa and Fraser Forster went into the penalty shootout. Both made one save, but Chelsea prevailed 4-3 after Walcott was denied and Smallbone skied his effort – although the youngster was superb on his reintroduction – meaning Forster’s denial of Mount wasn’t enough.

Saints: Forster; Walker-Peters, Valery, Lyanco, Salisu, Djenepo (Livramento 82’); Diallo (Romeu 76’), S. Armstrong (C) (Smallbone 76’); Tella (Walcott 66’), Adams (Long 66’), A. Armstrong

Unused subs: Bednarek, Perraud, Redmond, Lewis (GK)

Booked: Diallo, Forster

Chelsea: Kepa; James, Chalobah, Sarr, Hudson-Odoi, Barkley (Mount 66’), Kovacic, Saul, Alonso, Ziyech (Chilwell 66’), Havertz

Unused subs: Bettinelli, Sharman-Lowe, Rudiger, Silva, Jorginho, Vale

Booked: N/A

Referee: Kevin Friend

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