Chelsea 2-2 Tottenham - Chelsea hold onto unbeaten record, Tottenham's challenge is over as Leicester win the Premier League!
What a game that was last night at Stamford Bridge as both teams looked to attack at will, both w...
What a game that was last night at Stamford Bridge as both teams looked to attack at will, both with very different reasons but both sides 100% committed. We had passion, we had desire, bookings galore and goals, what else do you expect from a London derby with a rivalry between the two sides that has lasted decades.
In my opinion, Guus Hiddink got his team selection wrong again by playing Willian out wide and not Eden Hazard from the start. It's clear to all of us that the hard-working Brazilian is better through the middle and Hazard is the better option wide but, for whatever reason, Hiddink decided to do the opposite. As a result, Tottenham had the better first half and took a well deserved two-goal lead.
Chelsea have suffered this season by giving the ball away in dangerous areas and by being caught out with a single through ball more often than I can remember and both instances once again handed Tottenham a lead which looked beyond us at half time.
I've said it before on here and I stand by the fact that I really, really rate Christian Eriksen in their midfield. The way he plays reminds me of Eidur Gudjohnsen and what he brought to that role for Chelsea. He takes up a position in space between our midfield and defence giving us all sorts of trouble. BOTH goals in the first half came from sloppy mistakes, the ball being played into his feet and in an instant we are turned and in trouble. We just could not get near him in that first half. Willian by the way found himself isolated and ineffective out wide. A Chelsea change needed to happen.
So Eden Hazard comes on for Pedro who had taken a couple of whacks from Kyle Walker and you breathe a sigh of relief in one hand but on the other, you have to ask why he didn't start the game! At that moment the game changed and Chelsea were on front foot taking the game to the visitors. You have to be honest here and admit that Tottenham still created a couple of chances of note but failed to play anywhere near as well as they had to give them an important lead.
Hazard looks revitalised after his absence through injury. Maybe, he has taken on board the opinions of the Chelsea faithful throughout the season and feels like he owes us with something to prove. Whatever it is, he looks back to being the player he was last season and almost instantly gave Danny Rose and Kyle Walker something to think about.
Chelsea pressure pays off and we win a corner at the Shed End. It comes over and Gary Cahill loses his marker, takes an unbelievable touch to control the ball in a packed penalty box with his right foot, then strikes it with his left into the corner from twelve yards to make it 1-2 and game on.
Chelsea make a further change as Oscar comes on for Matic and what an impact he has with a sublime tackle on the impressive Harry Kane on the edge of our box which leads to our equaliser. Facing his own goal, tracking back, he dives in and barges Kane out of the way while winning the ball back to then give it simple to a team mate and we are off attacking Spurs again.
The ball comes out wide to Hazard to skips passed two or three challenges before giving it square to Diego Costa. Now Costa spots his marker trying to get in front of him to win it and knowing he will not beat him to it, let's the ball run across his body, turning his defender and Costa is in full flow now heading towards goal. He spots Hazard has made a run off the ball, has beaten his defender and Costa slides the ball into his run for Hazard to strike it first time just on the edge of the box to curl it into the top right hand corner as Hugo Loris can only watch as it sails high passed him and into the net making it 2-2 with just eight minutes to go!
We all witnessed what happened in those final minutes in addition to added time and anyone who has played the game at whatever level will know when you are that close and lose it, it's tough to take and you become frustrated. Unfortunately, some of their players went too far deserved to be punished retrospectively.
As far as Tottenham are concerned putting our rivalry to one side, they have such a bright future ahead of them and find themselves with a team that is in fantastic shape. They WILL be up there again next season and to get where they are now after being a team with promise to not deliver is a giant step up which is down to Mauricio Pochettino. They have such a young side with a strong spine that could achieve success in the very near future. Tottenham could prove to be the benchmark and Chelsea need to be at that level they achieved in the second half to get close under Antonio Conte next season.
As for Chelsea? We extend our unbeaten record over the visitors at Stamford Bridge. It looked under huge threat at half time but you have to hand it to the players for fighting back and playing as they did. They knew what it meant to us last night and finally gave us something to shout about in what has been a nightmare season.
Guus Hiddink should still be taken to task for the errors he continues to make with his team selections as Eden Hazard rescued him and us from the unthinkable!
Commiserations Tottenham but you knew when it's Chelsea we always stitch you up one way or the other! You have to be honest and admit that Leicester have deserved the title 100% this year. They too are an outstanding side that are set up to play to their strengths and win games. With a Manager who finally, after 28 years wins his first title, it truly is the ultimate story of the underdog and the most amazing achievement.
Chelsea fans celebrated like we've won the league last night after putting an end to your challenge, our unbeaten record in tact at the Bridge and finally players playing to their potential. Tottenham fans should take some comfort in that because that's as good as it has been for us all year!
An unforgettable season for Leicester and for Tottenham. The Premier League table doesn't lie and despite the elation last night, this remains a season to forget for Chelsea!