Chelsea 1-0 Manchester United: Hazard punishes wasteful Red Devils to hand Blues eighth FA Cup crown

Chelsea 1-0 Manchester United: Hazard punishes wasteful Red Devils to hand Blues eighth FA Cup crown

Eden Hazard's first half penalty sealed an eighth FA Cup crown for the Blues.

brandon-sayer
Brandon Sayer
ChelseaCourtois, Azpilicueta, Cahill (c), Rudiger, Moses, Kante, Fabregas, Bakayoko, Alonso, Hazard (Willian, min. 90+1), Giroud (Morata, min. 89).
Manchester UnitedDe Gea; Valencia, Jones (Mata, min. 87), Smalling, Young; Matic, Herrera, Pogba; Lingard (Martial, min. 73), Sánchez, Rashford (Lukaku, min. 73).
SCORE1-0, min. 22, Hazard.
REFEREEMichael Oliver (ENG). Booked: Jones (min. 21), Valencia (min. 58), Courtois (min. 90+4).
INCIDENTS2018 Emirates FA Cup final between Chelsea and Manchester United, held at Wembley.

Eden Hazard's first half penalty saw Chelsea defeat a wasteful Manchester United side 1-0 at Wembley in the 2018 Emirates FA Cup final.

Hazard once again proved to be the difference for Chelsea on an important day for Antonio Conte as he won and scored the only goal of the game from the penalty spot in the 22nd minute.

Jose Mourinho's men had the chances in the second half to at least find an equaliser but it wasn't to be as the Blues saw the game out to make up for their defeat in the final 12 months ago.

Lukaku only fit to take his place on the bench as the team news for both sides was revealed

The big team news before the game saw Romelu Lukaku having to settle for a place on the bench after not fully recovering from his ankle injury to play 90 minutes, with Marcus Rashford given the nod to lead the attack for Mourinho's men.

On the other hand, Conte started with what he calls his best team with Oliver Giroud leading the line in a 3-5-2 formation which gives Hazard the chance to roam and affect the game in a positive way.

Herrera given the tack of manmarking Hazard once again

Straight from kick-off it was clear what one of Mourinho's tactics were as Ander Herrera was given the task of manmarking Chelsea's dangerman Hazard not for the the first time for Mourinho's men against the Blues since he took over two seasons ago.

The game itself started at a slow pace with both sides looking to sit back and see what each other were going to do in the game before showing their hand.

That showed with the first chance of the game when a mistake from Jones gave Hazard the ball with the winger beating three men before forcing David de Gea into a very good save.

 

Hazard slotted home a penalty after being fouled by Jones

That gave the Blues the confidence of getting at the United defence and that's were the first goal of the game came from when Phil Jones fouled Hazard in the box as he was through on goal.

Hazard got himself up off the ground to take the penalty and he confidently slotted the ball into the back of the net sending De Gea the wrong way.

Chelsea's well-drilled defence meant United found it difficult to create many chances in the first half

United, therefore, had to respond to going behind but they really struggled to create any big chances against a very well-organised chelsea defence with the only real chance for United coming right at the end of the half when Jones headed wide, when he should have done better, from a good cross from Ashley Young.

Not long after that chance the half-time whistle went with Chelsea well in control of the contest with United needing to be much better in the second half if they were to get back into the game.

 

Mourinho's team talk had an effect on his players without leading to a goal

Straight from the restart of the game it was clear that Mourinho had some harsh words for his players as they came out at the start of the second half playing with much more urgency than they did throughout the first.

This resulted in Thibaut Courtois being called in action a few times to keep his side in the lead. The first save came from a Rashford shot after a great passing move from United.

The next save that the Belgian keeper made though was much more impressive when he denied Jones from equalising with a goalbound header. Alexis Sanchez put the ball into the back of the net from the rebound but it was correctly ruled out for offside.

Chelsea though were always a danger on the break and they almost made it 2-0 when N'Golo Kante played Marcos Alonso through on goal but the left back saw his shot well-saved by De Gea.

Pogba should have sent the game to extra time late on

It meant that it was going to be a frantic finish to the game as United went in search of an equalising goal that would send the final to extra time and they should have late on when Paul Pogba somehow put a free header wide of the goal from a Young corner.

Brilliant defending from Chelsea saw them win the FA Cup this time around

United continued until the very last second of the game to get a goal, but they failed to get an equaliser, as the Chelsea defenders showed real determination by throwing themselves in front of everything to win the match and that is exactly what they did as they won the FA Cup to end a disappointing season on a high.

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