Chelsea Defeat Lille 2:0, Kai Havertz and Christian Pulisic Inspire the Blues to a Champions League Victory
- Chelsea take a two-goal advantage into the second leg game against Lille, in three weeks' time in France
- Chelsea beat French side Lille thanks to goals by German, Kai Havertz and American, Christian Pulisic
- N'Golo Kanté was instrumental in Chelsea's win over Lille and was named the man of the match for his performance
Kai Havertz and Christian Pulisic scored for Chelsea as they recorded a 2-0 win over the French side, Lille, in the UEFA Champions League.
Prior to the game, the biggest talking point was Romelu Lukaku being left out of the matchday squad.
Thomas Tuchel explained that the player was being rested for the Carabao Cup final against Liverpool this coming weekend, but many believed it stemmed from the player’s poor performances of late.
Chelsea though didn’t seem to miss Lukaku as Havertz expertly led the line. The German could have put The Blues up in the fourth minute of the game, but his connection to a César Azpilicueta cross flew well over the bar.
Romelu Lukaku dropped for Lille clash at Stamford Bridge as concerns grow; Chelsea manager reveals why
Havertz once again almost put Chelsea ahead just three minutes later when he forced a smart save from Lille keeper, Léo Jardim. The German wouldn’t be denied a third time, as he headed home from the resulting corner.
Lille did show some signs of a fightback after going behind but never really trouble Edouard Mendy in the Chelsea goal.
Chelsea ramped up the pressure in the rest of the first half and the beginning of the second.
N'Golo Kanté was a magician in midfield, pulling the strings and dictating play. Tuchel even singled out the player for his impressive display after the game, The Metro reported.
Kanté was instrumental in Chelsea’s second goal, driving at the defenders from his own half, before smartly setting up Christian Pulisic who finished in the bottom right corner. The American celebrated at the corner flag with a dance that soon made headlines of its own on social media.
Rangers rip through Borussia Dortmund, beat the German side by 4 goals to 2 in the UEFA Europa League playoffs
Chelsea held on to the win and will go to France, for the second leg in three weeks’ time, with a two-goal advantage.
Kanté was named the Man of the Match after the game, Chelsea confirmed on their Instagram.
UEFA Champions League: Chelsea officially unveiled as World Champions in a home game against Lille
The Blues enjoyed a relatively comfortable win over the Frenchmen, courtesy of goals by German Kai Havertz and American Christian Pulisic. The return leg in Lille will take place on the 16th of March.
Satisfyingly, the team also got to sport the gold-and-white FIFA Champions Badge for the very first time, a privilege afforded only to the reigning world champions of any FIFA event at all official levels.
This privilege is enjoyed until the end of the next tournament, where the defending champions can either extend their stay on their shirts by winning a consecutive title, or the usurpers earn the right to wear it by dethroning the holders on the way to glory.