Ziyech relieved to end long wait for Chelsea first after helping to book Champions League quarter-final berth


The Moroccan international winger was on target in a meeting with Atletico Madrid as the effort saw him open his goal scoring at Stamford Bridge

Hakim Ziyech expressed relief at ending a “long” wait for a debut goal at Stamford Bridge as the Moroccan winger shattered a barren 11-game streak in the Champions League win over the Atletico Madrid.

The 27-year-old, who joined the Blues from Ajax in the summer of 2020, put Thomas Tuchel’s side on their way to a 2-0 victory over the leaders of La Liga, which gave them a place in the quarter-finals.

His effort came as he was putting the finishing touches on a radical counterattack, and the forward is happy to prove his worth in what has been a first test campaign in England.

What was said?

Ziyech told Chelsea official site of the strike that saw him open a home goal on the 12th attempt: “It was an important goal and I had to wait a long time for it.

“We took the ball well in midfield and used it in space and it was a good delivery and it was a good finish. It’s always a good feeling when you go 1-0 in front and especially when you score it yourself, and the delivery for Timo [Werner] was good and Kai’s pass [Havertz] before too.

“It was a good counterattack and we knew that for our game there was a little more space and there was calm in our game, and it came at a good time.

Ziyech added on the suit with other new recruits: “Kai and I know Timo’s game and try to use it in space because we know he’s very fast, and we have it. well done in this game.

“There were some tough times in the game, but most of the time we got it under control. It was kind of like seeing how the game would go in the first 10 minutes and then we got control and played our game and we did well.

“It’s a big win, a big win, and I think right now everyone in the world who supports Chelsea is happy.”

Ziyech’s record at Chelsea in 2020-21

A man caught by Frank Lampard endured fitness and fitness struggles in his first season in West London. Only 11 Premier League starts have taken place and 25 appearances in total.

Two goals and four assists have been awarded and there is no way Tuchel will allow a proven artist to rest on his laurels.

The Blues boss said of Ziyech after seeing him draw attention against Atletico: “There were some easy ball losses from Hakim in the opposing half where he needs to improve, that his playing becomes a little clearer and a little more structured.

“That it’s also easier for the guys around him to feel what he’s doing, that it’s no surprise. He can still adapt but it was a big step forward for him.

“Like I said, it was the choice to replace Mason’s workload with Hakim’s workload because it’s something we can always count on and he gives everything. He gives a huge physical contribution in the games. I’m glad he was quick enough to follow the counterattack and finish it.

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