Kepa inspires Chelsea to UEFA Super Cup victory after beating Europa League winners on penalties

Kepa inspires Chelsea to UEFA Super Cup victory after beating Europa League winners on penalties, Babajide Orevba
updated at April 12, 2023 at 7:42 PM
  • Villarreal's quest to win the UEFA Super Cup silverware was met with disappointment after losing 6-5 on penalties to Chelsea
  • The Spanish League side gave up a very good fight in the open game but lost two spot-kicks during the shootouts to hand Chelsea the title
  • Thomas Tuchel has now won two major European titles for the Blues just eight months into his reign as their manager

Chelsea are UEFA Super Cup champions following their 6-5 win over Villarreal via penalty shootouts Windsor Park in Northern Ireland.

Kepa Arrizabalaga came from the bench in the 119th minute to save two spot-kicks for the Blues on their way to glory after both teams settled for a 1-1 draw in 120 minutes.

The Premier League outfit opened the scoring through a superb finish from Hakim Ziyech from close-range three minutes before the half-hour mark after connecting with Kai Havertz's cross from the left flank.

Arrizabalaga inspires Chelsea to UEFA Super Cup victory after beating Europa League winners on penalties
Kepa Arrizabalaga making an audacious save during Chelsea's UEFA Super Cup penalty shootouts against Villarreal. Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC
Source: Getty Images

It was Marcos Alonso who started the build-up from the back after sending a killer pass to his teammate who wasted no time before his delivery into the 18-yard box.

And barely three minutes after taking the lead, the Premier League outfit almost conceded in the 30th minute but thanks to the woodwork that denied Gerard Moreno a chance.

The game continued with Thomas Tuchel's men trying to add to their tally in the first half but their Spanish league opposition was decent enough to reject all their advances.

However, the Stamford Bridge dwellers held on to their 1-0 lead until the half-time whistle was blown by Russian referee Sergei Karasev.

The second half kicked off with the La Liga side more ambitious than they were in the opening half as they asked almost all the questions in the lap.

And having made so many attacking moves, coach Unai Emery's men finally broke the deadlock in the 73rd minute with a superb finish from Gerard Moreno.

His goal was assisted by Boulaye Dia who found space to leave a back pass for the 29-year-old Spanish striker despite being choked by Chelsea defender in the danger zone.

Moreno's strike then restored parity for the Europa League winner as the game was stretched into extra minutes.

Authors photo
Babajide Orevba photo
Babajide Orevba
Babajide Orevba is a CAF accredited Nigerian journalist and HOD of the Local Desk with over 10 years of experience in media landscape.He studied NCE Political Science/Social Studies, AOCOED.