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Player Ratings: Chelsea FC vs Crystal Palace


Result

The second FA Cup semi-final of the weekend played out a short time ago.

Said clash saw Crystal Palace and Chelsea face off at Wembley, with the winner primed to face Liverpool in the competition’s showpiece next month.

Thomas Tuchel’s side headed into the game as clear favourites and, when all was said and done, the west Londoners proved too much for Patrick Vieira and co.

Chelsea struggled to create too much on the day, but they did eventually break the deadlock when Kai Havertz’s cross fell to Ruben Loftus-Cheek, who smashed his effort past Jack Butland.

Mason Mount then made it 2-0 after 76 minutes, and that is how the tie finished.

Chelsea player ratings

Edouard Mendy (7.5) – Made a brilliant save to deny Kouyate in the first half.

Reece James (6.5) – Was placed at right-centre-back to help nullify Zaha’s pace and was able to help keep the Ivorian quiet.

Andreas Christensen (7) – His pace compared to Thiago Silva’s allowed Chelsea to push their defensive line higher. The Dane also made a number of excellent interceptions, blocks and tackles.

Antonio Rudiger (6.5) – Another solid showing from the German.

Cesar Azpilicueta (6.5) – Struggled to provide the attacking threat of Reece James down the right but his pressing was crucial to Loftus-Cheek’s goal.  He also won the ball back in the build-up to Mount’s strike.

Jorginho (5) – Was too slow in his distribution of the ball, but did play a decent pass to Havertz ahead of the opening goal. Off after 78 minutes.

Mateo Kovacic (5) – Was tasked with neutralising Eze’s threat and did a decent job of it before injury resulted in his withdrawal after less than half an hour.

Marcos Alonso (5) – Largely ineffective going forward. Had little to do at the other end.

Mason Mount (7) – Struggled to feed Werner who made a number of runs in behind. Did well to create an opening for himself before scoring after 75 minutes.

Kai Havertz (5) – Managed one shot in the first half, which was off target. Booked for diving when he likely would have had a decent chance if he had stayed on his feet. Not the German's finest showing.

Timo Werner (7.5) – Produced one half-decent cross in the first half. Assisted Mount for Chelsea’s second and should have had a second assist but Lukaku fluffed his lines.

Substitutes

Ruben Loftus-Cheek (7.5) – Great ball to Werner early in second half which came to nothing. Opened the scoring with a thunderous strike 65 minutes in. Made a number of threatening runs which led to Chelsea chances.

N’Golo Kante (5) – Helped Chelsea see out the game with little trouble.

Romelu Lukaku (2) – Hardly touched the ball when he came on apart from directing a chance wide when it looked harder to miss.

Hakim Ziyech (3) – Did little of note.

Thiago Silva (5) – On for the final eight minutes to help see out the game, which Chelsea did.

Crystal Palace player ratings

Jack Butland (5) – Couldn’t do much about Loftus-Cheek’s goal, which took a slight deflection.

Joel Ward (5.5) – Helped keep Alonso quiet but struggled to deal with Werner’s pace.

Joachim Andersen (4) – Could have done better in his attempt to cut Werner’s assist for Mount out. He then missed an open goal 78 minutes in.

Marc Guehi (6.5) – Made a number of key interceptions and tackles. Was unlucky to see his block from Havertz’s cross fall straight to Loftus-Cheek.

Tyrick Mitchell (6) – Solid defensively for much of the game. Perhaps could have done better closing down Havertz for the Chelsea opener.

Cheikhou Kouyate (6.5) – Had Palace’s best chance of the first half, which was stopped by a great Mendy save. He then had a great chance from a corner an hour in but his effort was poor.

James McArthur (5.5) – Dominated midfield in the first 45. Less impactful in the second half but was perhaps unlucky to be taken off.

Jeffrey Schlupp (3) – Largely ineffective showing before being taken off after 71 minutes.

Wilfried Zaha (3) – Didn’t manage a single shot in the 90 minutes.

Eberechi Eze (4) – Failed to create anything of note in the first half. Slightly better in the second 45 but not what Patrick Vieira would have wanted.

Jean-Philippe Mateta (3) – Was kept very quiet in the first half and then taken off after 55 minutes.

Substitutes

Jordan Ayew (3) – Like Mateta, Ayew was afforded little time on the ball.

Christian Benteke (N/A) – Only had a handful of touches.

Michael Olise (6) – Attempted to create a number of chances when he came on but none led to a goal.

Luka Milivojevic (N/A)

What they said

Chelsea's Ruben Loftus-Cheek: "Way overdue [the goal]! It has been a tough road with injuries and going on loan to find my form again but I always believed in myself and I always wanted to play for Chelsea. I have played quite a lot this season, I am happy.

"I was just thinking hit it, I think it took a little deflection but I'll take it! I had to be ready to step in. It looked a bit slow in the first half so I just wanted to bring some energy.

"The reason I am still here is my mentality through all the injuries. I still believed in myself and I said for many years my time will come.

"We want to get them back, simple as that. It was a fantastic game in the League Cup final and could have gone either way."

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Josh Barker

Josh Barker

Middlesbrough fan from the North East of England. @JoshBarker979 on Twitter.



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