Chelsea survived a second half onslaught to secure a win 2-1 against Everton in Wednesday’s EFL Cup last-16 tie at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea 2 Everton 1
Rudiger heads home
Rooney comes close to an equaliser
Willian makes it 2-0 in injury time
Calvert-Lewin gets a consolation at the death
Chelsea were in control in a first half of few chances with Antonio Rudiger scoring the opener from Charly Musonda’s cross in the 26th minute.
Everton came out with renewed energy and it was the home side who were grateful to goalkeeper Willy Caballero for keeping it at 1-0. Willian added an injury time goal on the counter before Dominic Calvert-Lewin got an even later consolation.
It was a quiet opening 10 minutes in terms of chances as both sides felt each other out at Stamford Bridge. The first opening fell to Michy Batshuayi in the 11th minute as he saw his strike on target blocked by Phil Jagielka.
It remained tight with Everton playing five in midfield though they fell behind in the 26th minute after switching off from a corner. Willian played it short to Charly Musonda who in turned picked out Antonio Rudiger – the German international finishing with a firm header beyond a rooted Jordan Pickford in goal.
Just before the break, the Blues again threatened as Ashley Williams gave the ball away and Danny Drinkwater released Willian. The Brazil international played in Davide Zappacosta and the right fullback burst forward into the box before striking an effort into the side-netting.
After the interval, the Toffees came out with more intensity and both Tom Davies and James McCarthy went into the book in quick succession for rash fouls.
The increased aggression in play perhaps should have led to an equaliser as right-back Jonjoe Kenny burst forward on to Aaron Lennon’s pass, and his cross picked out Kevin Mirallas. The winger headed it down to Wayne Rooney who saw his close range effort saved well by Willy Caballero.
Everton were looking the more dangerous side and Lennon was close to getting on the end of Mirallas’ cross, but the ball was hooked away for a corner. In the 68th minute Caballero was again called into action as he saved from Jagielka at his near post from Leighton Baines delivery.
Moments later the Argentine palmed Mirallas’ strike away when the winger was played into space on the edge of the box by Lennon. Against the run of play, Rooney’s poor back pass saw Batshuayi put free on goal but his touch beyond Pickford was heroically diverted to safety by Jagielka, who collided with the post.
Nonetheless, the away outfit kept pushing and Ademola Lookman skimmed the bar after he cut inside and hit a left-footed shot. Yet, Chelsea added to their advantage in stoppage time on a rare counter as Willian bent in a superb second from Cesc Fabregas’ assist.
The visitors did somehow get a goal their great pressure deserved at the death when Dominic Calvert-Lewin forced the ball over the line, with Caballero claiming a foul as he sprawled on the floor.
Full-time: Chelsea 2-1 Everton.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) October 25, 2017