An extra time goal from Pedro ultimately proved to be the difference as Chelsea secured a spot in the FA Cup semi-finals at the expense of Leicester City.
Alvaro Morata gave Chelsea the lead in the in the 42nd minute thanks to some great work by Willian. The score remained at 0-1 as both sides went into the break, but it was Leicester who came out the stronger side in the second half.
The Foxes slowly began taking a foothold of the game started dominating the proceedings. Their persistence eventually paid off that they pulled one back deservedly through Jamie Vardy in the 76th minute. The game ebbed and flowed thereafter as full-time approached, and it was all squad after 90 minutes.
Antonio Conte’s decision to take off Willian and bring on Pedro proved to be the decisive moment of the game, and the former Barcelona man netted only his 7th goal of the season to help Chelsea put the game to bed in the 105th minute. The Hard Tackle now runs the rule over the visitors.
Willy Caballero: 7.5
The Argentine made 4 good saves throughout the game and was also good while coming off his line. Caballero though, could do little for the goal from such close range, even if he did prevent it from going in the first time. That remains the only blemish in what was otherwise a perfect display.
Cesar Azpilicueta: 7
Marc Albrighton really pushed Azpilicueta to the very limit, but the Chelsea vice-captain absorbed and dealt with everything that the Englishman and the rest of Leicester’s attack had to offer. Doesn’t seem to have recovered from the Barcelona game. However, he defended well and distributed calmly.
Andreas Christensen: 7
The young Dane had a decent game at the heart of the back-three. Christensen met everything that Leicester threw his way head on and defended well, more so in the second half. Had to be taken in the 101st minute due to some discomfort.
Antonio Rudiger: 7
It wasn’t his best game for the Blues, but it wasn’t his worst either. Leicester’s attack didn’t make it easy on Rudiger, but he stood his ground and didn’t let them get through on several occasions.
Victor Moses: 5
The Nigerian didn’t have a good game at all. Moses lacked the end product and his decision making was slow. Seemed to lack focus and conviction for large parts of the game and it was surprising that he lasted the entire game. Picked up a booking in the 89th minute.
N’Golo Kante: 8.5
Once again, Chelsea’s best player on the night. The Frenchman was fantastic on both ends of the pitch and his tireless running in the middle of the park was a sight to behold. An absolute colossus in midfield, he seemed to be everywhere Chelsea needed him to be and he even set up Pedro’s winner with a fantastic cross late in the game.
Tiemoue Bakayoko: 5.5
Lasted only 45 minutes and managed to get booked just before the end of the half. Lost the ball often and his passing was astray. Not the kind of confidence boosting performance that was needed on his return to the starting XI.
Marcos Alonso: 6
Good going forward as usual, but the only time he was beaten by Riyad Mahrez on the left flank, it resulted in a goal. The only blot on an otherwise good defensive performance. Barely got forward in the second half and even lesser after the goal. Otherwise defended well and dealt with everything that came his way.
The Brazilian earns that rating only for his first half performance. Willian looked exhausted in the second half and after a receiving a crunching tackle on his ankles, things didn’t get any better for him. Set up Morata with the most wonderful run and through ball. Surprisingly, he wasn’t taken off until early into extra time.
Alvaro Morata: 8
Morata scored his first goal since Boxing Day and the relief was evident on his face after he coolly finished past Kasper Schmeichel in the 42nd minute to give his side the lead. Wasn’t as effective or threatening in the second half as Leicester gained more possession and control over the game.
Eden Hazard: 6.5
The Belgian barely got involved in between large periods of the game and didn’t see as much of the ball as he would’ve liked. Began fading in the second half and fatigue started to set in. Often seem isolated on the left wing.
Didn’t make his typical driving runs forward and couldn’t seem to pull off too many take-ons on the night. Leicester City had clearly decided to give him special attention, and they succeeded in keeping him quiet for most of the night.
Cesc Fabregas: 6
The Spaniard came on in the 45th minute for Bakayoko, but couldn’t do too much for his side going forward as Leicester took it up a notch and started dominating the proceedings. However, he did defend as much as he could and kept his game steady as the game went into extra time. Worked well off the ball.
Came on in the 92nd minute and netted what would prove to be the winner 13 minutes later. He found himself in the right place and right time and capitalised on a misunderstanding between the goalkeeper and the defenders and headed Chelsea into the semi-finals of the FA Cup.