Chelsea beat Spurs in semi-final clash

Chelsea 4 Tottenham 2

Eden Hazard and Nemanja Matic scored second-half goals as Chelsea won a pulsating FA Cup semi-final against Tottenham to secure a first final appearance in five years.

Willian’s double had given the Blues the lead after an enthralling first half.

Harry Kane cancelled out Willian’s superb early free-kick, but Heung-Min Son fouled Victor Moses in the box and Willian smashed home the resulting penalty.

Dele Alli dragged Tottenham level after the break, but Hazard’s low shot and a thunderous first-time strike from Matic earned victory in the closing stages.

Spurs, with Christian Eriksen starring, had long spells of possession on both occasions after drawing level, but failed to create many chances.

And Antonio Conte’s side, who will play Arsenal or Manchester City in the final next month, earned a clinical win following the introduction of both Diego Costa and Hazard with just over 30 minutes remaining.

Pedro and Willian were both to the fore as Chelsea made a lively start to the first period following a spine-tingling minute’s applause for Tottenham under-23 coach Ugo Ehiogu, the former England defender who this week died at the age of 44.

Willian, who played in a front three alongside Pedro and the ineffective Michy Batsuyai, had already threatened by the time Nathan Ake’s tackle allowed Pedro to race through and provoke the foul that led to the opening goal.

Willian curled in a glorious 20-yard free-kick, the Brazilian bending the ball into the far corner and past Hugo Lloris after Pedro had been cynically brought down by Toby Alderweireld.

Batshuayi then missed a great chance to double the lead, heading tamely at goal from an N’Golo Kante cross.

And Spurs, who have now only beaten Chelsea twice in 17 attempts, equalised when Kane flicked the ball into the far corner with a stooping header from Eriksen’s cross.

Spurs, who have now lost their past seven FA Cup semi-finals, gained in confidence having been second best before the equaliser and began to dominate possession, with Eric Dier going close with another headed chance.

Willian’s cool spot-kick restored the Chelsea half-time lead, only for Alli to make it 2-2 with an exquisite first-time finish from Christian Eriksen’s cross.

But the introduction of Hazard, Costa and Cesc Fabregas breathed new life into Chelsea.

Hazard, who ended Tottenham’s title hopes with the equaliser in a 2-2 draw last season, crashed the ball home after Spurs failed to clear a Fabregas corner to put the Blues 3-2 up.

And Matic smashed in an unstoppable 25-yard first-time effort from a Hazard pass to make it 4-2 soon after.

Chelsea: Courtois; Azpilicueta, Luiz, Ake; Moses, Kante, Matic, Alonso; Willian [Hazard 61], Batshuayi [Costa 61], Pedro [Fabregas 74].
Subs not used: Begovic, Zouma, Terry, Chalobah.