Goals from Michy Batshuayi and Fikayo Tomori spurred Chelsea to a 2-1 win against Hull City in the fourth round of the FA Cup at KCOM Stadium on Saturday.
Chelsea were off to a blazing start at the KCOM Stadium, with Michy Batshuayi handing them the lead just six minutes into the game with a deflected effort after Mason Mount’s blocked header fell to him. The Blues continued to control the proceedings and created chances, but failed to extend their lead as the first half came to an end.
Chelsea were finally able to double their advantage in the 64th minute when Fikayo Tomori got on the end of a Ross Barkley free-kick to turn the ball home. Frank Lampard’s men were given a scare when Kamil Grosicki pulled one back soon after, but the Blues held on to their narrow lead, sealing progression to the next round of the FA Cup.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) January 25, 2020
And here’s how we at The Hard Tackle rated the performances of the Chelsea stars on Saturday evening.
Willy Caballero: 6/10
Coming into the side for the cup tie, the veteran goalkeeper did not have a lot of saves to make, with Hull City not threatening the Chelsea goal at all. Showed good command to collect some crosses in his box, while his distribution from the back was quite solid as well. Not a lot he could have done to save Grosicki’s free-kick which took a huge deflection off of Mateo Kovacic.
Cesar Azpilicueta: 7/10
Not rested for the game due to the unavailability of Reece James, the Chelsea skipper did some good work on the right flank against the Tigers. Played a key role leading to Batshuayi’s opener and drew a save from the hosts’ goalkeeper in the first half. Defended solidly for most parts, helping keep things tight in a nervy period towards the end.
Kurt Zouma: 6/10
Back into the starting XI, the Frenchman defended manfully against the threat of Tom Eaves on the evening. But, there were some iffy moments when he had the ball at his feet, particularly in the second period when he put his team under pressure with some misplaced passes.
Fikayo Tomori: 8/10
Another player who was making his return to the starting lineup, the Chelsea youngster took his chance brilliantly, staking a claim for a regular berth. Was alert and solid at the back, impressing with his ability to sense danger and make crucial interventions throughout.
Was an imposing presence at the other end of the field as well, heading home the match-clinching goal for Chelsea in the second period and testing the opposition keeper once again after that.
Marcos Alonso: 5/10
Back from injury and into the side, the Spaniard had a difficult game at the KCOM Stadium as he was given a hard time at the back by the lively Jarrod Bowen. Got forward well, but his end product was lacking as well, while it was him who conceded the free-kick leading to Hull’s goal in the second half.
Ross Barkley: 6/10
A mixed outing for the England international who had some good moments driving at the Hull City defence from good positions, but was also guilty of losing possession on quite a few occasions, while the end product wasn’t always there either. Forced a save from the keeper in the first period and then set Tomori’s goal up with a nice free-kick.
Mateo Kovacic: 8/10
Starting in the Jorginho role, the Croatian international looked imperious in the opening 45 minutes as he dictated the tempo of the game with sharp, precise forward passes helping start attacks for Chelsea.
Put in the hard yards defensively, but was put under some pressure by the hosts early in the second period. However, Kovacic regained composure and helped the Blues see off any danger in the final phase of the game.
Mason Mount: 6/10
Back into the side after being dropped against Arsenal, the Chelsea academy graduate put in a good shift in the middle. Drove forward with purpose every time he was on the ball and got into some dangerous positions, but lacked the final killer ball to hurt the hosts. Drew a save from the Hull goalkeeper, but influence faded as the game wore on.
Callum Hudson-Odoi: 6/10
After an excellent performance against Arsenal in midweek, Hudson-Odoi continued where he left off causing problems to the Hull City backline with his pace and direct running. However, the England international’s threat seemed to wear off in the second period and was taken off by Lampard.
Michy Batshuayi: 6/10
Got his opportunity due to Tammy Abraham’s injury and the Belgian started off in a great manner, giving Chelsea the lead just six minutes in. Showed good link-up play after that, but there were signs of rust as well, as he was let down by heavy touches every now and then. Was pretty much a spectator in the second period as he hardly got into the game.
Getting a rare starting opportunity, the former Barcelona superstar failed to make the most of it. Showed intent to run at the Hull City defence and got himself into decent positions, but his final ball did not have the quality to carve them open. Put through by Willian for a great chance at 2-0, but fired wide off the mark. A rusty performance.
On for Mount a little after Chelsea’s second goal. Added little to the contest apart from creating a chance for Pedro, who fired his shot wide.
Billy Gilmour: 6/10
Made his first FA Cup appearance, replacing Hudson-Odoi in the 68th minute. Slotting in as the holding midfielder, the youngster looked calm, comfortable and confident in his short time on the field. Tested the Hull goalkeeper with an effort from distance.
Tariq Lamptey: N/A
Stoppage time substitute for Pedro.