As it happened: Chelsea leave it late as Cardiff's relegation woes worsen
Photo: Getty Images - Marc Atkins

As it happened: Chelsea leave it late as Cardiff's relegation woes worsen

Chelsea scored in added time to secure all three points after a number of controversial decisions went against Cardiff

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Make sure you check out all the post-match reactions and articles from this game and plenty more on Vavel
I have been Aaron Hindhaugh and hope you have enjoyed the coverage on Vavel of this Premier League fixture
It was a game not short of controversy and one that will set up for an interesting Warnock interview 
A result that leaves Cardiff five points from safety but Chelsea are now level on points with Arsenal and only one point behind Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur in 4th and 3rd
Nei Warnock has his head in his hands at full time as he knows his side have been very hard done by this afternoon
Full time in Cardiff and the home side's relegation woes are not helped by some poor officiating decisions today as Chelsea's first goal was offside and Rudiger should have seen red before the Blues equalised 
93'

Chelsea should have killed the game off but Barkley fires over when he should have scored after Hazard gave him the opportunity after turning his man on the halfway line 

Willian has time to pick out a great cross and Peltier does not see Loftus Cheek's run which leaves the midfielder with a simple task of heading home in front of the traveling Chelsea fans
90' GOAL

Chelsea have snatched what must be a certain three points in added time as Ruben-Loftus Cheek heads home at the back post

It had to be a red card as Rudiger was last man and Zohore was about to flick the ball past Kepa, more bad luck for Cardiff
86'

More controversy as Rudiger tips up Zohore who is one-on-one with Kepa who has come racing off his line but only gets a yellow card

On the replay, Azpilicueta is about two yards offside when the ball is flicked on and Cardiff can feel very hard done by
83'

Goal Chelsea are level in the last few minutes of the half as Azpilicueta gets onto the end of a corner and heads home from a few yards away

76'

Probably the most notable thing this half since the goal is the chant from the Chelsea supporters of 'You don't know what you're doing' as Hudson-odoi will not be making an appearance today as Giroud comes on for Higuain

72'

Nothing much has happened with Chelsea struggling to break down Cardiff at the moment

66'

Once again a long throw is causing trouble at the back for Chelsea as Niasse and Morrison flick the ball on towards Murphy but Alonso manages to hook the ball clear

GOAL 

Straight after half time and Chelsea don’t deal with the long throw and Camarasa slots home 

17'

Cardiff's wide players are causing Chelsea a lot of problems as Murphy and Hoilett are running at their men at every attempt and pinning them back

12'

Chelsea don't deal with a long Cardiff throw and it eventually falls to Murphy who cuts inside and bends a shot narrowly wide of the far post

11'

Pedro curls one from the edge of the box which leaves Etherdige stranded but it skims the top of the net 

8'

Not much happening with Cardiff pressing well and not allowing Chelsea to have a lot of time on the ball

From the resulting corner, Gunnarsson pulls Rudiger to the ground but no penalty is given
3'

Barkley starting brightly for the away side as he drives forward and sees his shot blocked

Kick off and Chelsea get us underway today
Cardiff City: Etheridge; Peltier, Morrison, Manga, Bennett; Gunnarsson, Arter; Hoilett, Camarasa, Murphy; Niasse
Team news for both sides

Chelsea: Kepa; Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Luiz, Alonso; Kovacic, Jorginho, Barkley; Pedro, Higuain, Willian

Cardiff team news
Cardiff, who face Manchester City just three days after this fixture, have only 19 fit players able to play.


Callum Patterson will be unavailable after suffering ligament damage during his spell with Scotland in the Euro 2020 qualifiers. He joins Bamba (knee ligament) and Matthew Connolly (dislocated ankle) on the sidelines.

Chelsea team news
Ruben Loftus-Cheek looks set to return from a back issue which caused the midfielder to miss out on England duty. Davide Zappacosta and Ethan Ampadu will both be assessed.  
Neil Warnock quotes
Honest as any, Warnock spoke about Sunday's massive match and the size of the task ahead. 

"It’s difficult, we know the situation. We watched the Everton game which they lost 2-0 and how they weren’t 4-0 up at half time, I don’t know."

"We’ve got to play really well, defend like we never have and our goalie’s got to have a good day too."

Much like his opposite manager, Warnock thought his squad could reach their individual target of another year in the top division. 

"I think all the lads think we can. We’d have snapped your hand off to be here at this stage of the season."

"We’re still putting the frighteners up one or two other teams. That’s why I’m proud to be where I am. I think if we stayed up, we could progress by investment again in a better quality squad.​​​​​​​"

After terrorising his team last time around, the Cardiff boss believed a certain Belgian should make way for another emerging starlet. 

"Hopefully he’d be on the bench. I’d give Callum (Hudson-Odoi) a game to be honest the way he’s gone with England."

"I don’t think anyone in the country can stop Hazard when he’s on his game."

Maurizio Sarri quotes
Despite dropping off just when Manchester United and Arsenal have struck a chord, Sarri insisted breaching the European places is possible. 

"The last period of the Premier League will be very hard for every team. I think we can reach the top four even if we are not able to win eight matches in a row.

‘We need to think match by match. The best way is to be focused on the next match."

All the concentration must be targeted their trip to Wales and the manager has highlighted the hosts strengths.

"It will be very difficult because they are physical, dangerous in the opposition box and from set-pieces, so we have to defend very high, otherwise it will be a problem for us."

A bodily Cardiff outfit will not be ideal for a side that Sarri admitted were feeling the effects of the international break.

"(N'Golo) Kante, (Olivier) Giroud, (Eden) Hazard played three matches in seven days. Now we are not in October and they are more tired. We need to recover.

‘I had the whole squad together only yesterday. I saw during training that some were a little bit tired.’

 

Chelsea and Cardiff clash
Rewind seven months and Chelsea had cruised to a 4-1 victory over Cardiff at Stamford Bridge, putting them top of the Premier League, with five consecutive victories to start the campaign. 

Fast forward to present day and Maurizio Sarri's side sit sixth in the league, desperately chasing the Champions League spots. Neil Warnock's Blue Birds perch perilously inside the drop zone, so their are huge consequences at both ends of the table. 

Home comfort for Cardiff
Despite sitting 18th in the division, Cardiff have continued to fight tooth and nail for their place in the top flight, with  their recent home win against West Ham a big boost.

In fact, it is their form at the Cardiff City Stadium that has put them in contention to avoid the drop; 71% of their points have been picked up here.

Therefore, Chelsea can take nothing for granted when they travel, especially considering their recent run on the road; only Fulham (6) have lost more away Premier League games in 2019 than the Blues. 

Welcome
Hello and welcome to VAVEL UK's live text commentary of Cardiff vs Chelsea. A game which will have repercussions potentially in the battle to beat the drop and in the race for the top four. Chelsea dominated the newly promoted outfit last time out, finding four goals at Stamford Bridge in September, taking them top of the table. 

The outcome could have been entirely different, as the away side took the lead through Sol Bamba within 20 minutes.

Eden Hazard hauled Chelsea back into the lead, with a double before half time. The Belgian was at his brilliant best, sealing his hat-trick from the penalty spot with ten to play.

Willian whipped a delightful effort into the top corner for the fourth and final, wrapping the points in emphatic fashion. 

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