Chelsea are through to the Champions League quarter-finals after a 2-0 victory over Atletico Madrid at Stamford Bridge.
Leading 1-0 on aggregate, it was vital to not give up an away goal to Madrid, and Chelsea ensured this did not happen with a fantastic all-round performance.
The Blues outclassed the La Liga side and goals from Hakim Ziyech and Emerson wrapped up the tie. It is fair to say every player had a significant role in the victory and here is how they all ranked:
No mistakes once again from our number one, he claims his sixth consecutive clean sheet and has now racked up a total of 20 in just 32 appearances for Chelsea. He made a crucial save at the end to prevent any late drama from occurring, there can be no complaints. – Rating – 7
The captain put in a solid display tonight, helping us to yet another clean sheet. There was of course one scary moment where he probably should have had a penalty given against him, despite this though he was a key aspect in the win. – Rating – 7.5
He may have become slightly unfavoured under Thomas Tuchel but Zouma put in a great shift in the centre of defence tonight. He was strong in the air and completely dominant at the back, keeping our goalkeeper well protected – performances like this will encourage Tuchel to make him a more regular face on the team sheet. – Rating – 7.5
In tonight’s game we arguably saw one of Rudiger’s best performances in a Chelsea shirt, he superbly controlled any attacking threats posed by Atletico, keeping Luiz Suarez completely silent. When he first started playing under Tuchel, many Chelsea fans were slightly concerned that he was too mistake-prone, but currently, you cannot put any arguments against him being one of our leading defenders. – Rating – 8.5
I do not think Alonso particularly did anything that made him stand out from the crowd tonight, but he still played a decent game, he obviously was not as involved as Reece James was down the other flank, but he did not really put a foot wrong. – Rating – 7
It still amazes me how under the radar this man goes when it comes to talk of the top midfielders in the Premier League, he starts our attacks, wins the ball back superbly, and can glide past defenders when needed. Kovacic dictates the play in the midfield, and we always look a much more complete side when he starts. – Rating – 7.5
Watching Kante in the midfield tonight was like taking a trip back to the 2016/17 season under Antonio Conte, the Frenchman was everywhere. He contested everything and drove the ball forward extremely well at points, the run at the end as well to open the space for the second goal just perfectly demonstrated the type of player he is. My man of the match goes to him as he ran the show and was simply immense all night long. – Rating – 9
Once again, Reece James had a good game, he was always an option down the right side and put some good crosses into the box. He was by no means the star performer, but it was a good display from him further showing why he should be starting in most games. – Rating – 7.5
What a huge confidence booster tonight’s game could turn out to be for the Moroccan midfielder, he scored a vital goal to put us 1-0 up the first half with a composed finish past Jan Oblak. Other than the goal he had some good moments, and hopefully this is a performance that will be looked back on as a marker for where he found his form. – Rating – 8
Havertz is definitely starting to put together a better stretch of performances in recent matches and he played a decent game here. The powerful driving run and pass he made to setup the opening for Timo Werner in the buildup to the goal was superb and this is the kind of thing we expect from the talented German. Again, it can only be seen as a good performance for his confidence. – Rating – 7
Although he did not find himself on the scoresheet tonight, Werner was a crucial part of this victory. He picked out Hakim Ziyech with a great assist to add to his tally. Werner is our leading assister so far this season and despite the fact he was brought in to score the goals, his overall game is starting to grow and be an important factor of this team. – Rating 7.5
Substitutes: Christian Pulisic – 7, Hudson-Odoi – 6.5, Emerson Palmieri – 7.5, Ben Chilwell – N/A
The unbeaten run for the Blues under Tuchel has now extended to 13 games and you can see there is a real togetherness in this squad. With the celebrations at the end of the game and after the goal, it’s clear this Champions League run means a lot to the players.
On Friday, the draw for the quarter-finals will be made, and no matter what happens the next round is going to be tough. We obviously are in a very good position right now and with the way we are playing no one will look forward to having to take us on.
In our next game we will be taking on Sheffield United in the FA Cup, and that will be a good chance to continue the good streak and get closer to potential silverware.
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