HomeFA CupChelsea 4-2 Leicester City: Blues edge FA Cup quarter-final classic

Chelsea 4-2 Leicester City: Blues edge FA Cup quarter-final classic

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Carney Chukwuemeka and Noni Madueke scored stoppage-time goals as Chelsea beat Leicester City 4-2 in an FA Cup quarter-final classic at Stamford Bridge, which featured a missed penalty, a bizarre own goal and a contentious red card.

Chelsea looked to be cruising into the last four when goals from Marc Cucurella and Cole Palmer put them 2-0 up before half-time, though Raheem Sterling saw an awful penalty saved by Jakub Stolarczyk.

However, it looked like Leicester might replicate Coventry City’s stunning comeback against Wolves when Axel Disasi sent a back pass sailing into his own net after the restart, before Stephy Mavididi levelled with a stunning finish.

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A topsy-turvy game turned on Callum Doyle’s VAR-assisted red card, though, with Leicester failing to hold on to force extra time.

Chukwuemeka broke their resistance two minutes into stoppage time, exchanging passes with Palmer before slotting home, before Madueke curled a brilliant effort home to stamp Chelsea’s ticket to Wembley Stadium.

Chelsea needed just 13 minutes to take the lead, with Nicolas Jackson bursting past Jannik Vestergaard to cross for Cucurella, who tapped into a gaping net at the far post.

Abdul Fatawu almost created an equaliser after 24 minutes as his cross was directed over the crossbar by Patson Daka, but just 42 seconds later, the winger’s clumsy challenge on Sterling gave Chelsea the opportunity to double their lead from the penalty spot.

Sterling squandered that chance though, taking the ball off Palmer before placing a terrible penalty far too close to Stolarczyk, who saved with his legs.

Wout Faes headed wide as Leicester looked to make that reprieve count, but the Foxes fell two goals behind on the stroke of half-time as Palmer tapped Sterling’s cutback home.

However, Chelsea gifted Leicester a route back into the tie within six minutes of the restart, with Disasi’s back pass sailing over the stranded Robert Sanchez and in for the most bizarre of own goals.

Within another 11 minutes, Leicester were level as Mavididi cut inside from the left before whipping a fine finish into the far corner, stunning the home fans into silence and sparking wild celebrations in the away end.

Jackson thought he had won a second Chelsea penalty when he went down under Doyle’s soft challenge with around 20 minutes remaining, but a VAR review established the defender caught Jackson outside the area, meaning the spot-kick was overturned and Doyle sent off.

The 10 men of Leicester sat deep in a bid to force extra time, but Palmer opened the door with a delicate backheel into the path of Chukwuemeka, who slotted home to re-establish Chelsea’s lead.

Madueke then put some gloss on the scoreboard in the eighth minute of stoppage time, dancing between several challenges before curling a wonderful effort into the top-left corner.

Harry Carr
Harry Carr
Harry is a freelance sports journalist with experience of working for the Racing Post, Stats Perform, Opta Analyst and more, covering major events across all sports but holding a particular love for the beautiful game.

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