Hull City 0-2 Chelsea: Match Reaction

Chelsea Football Club

Match Summary

Chelsea climbed above Arsenal and Manchester City in the table as Hazard and Torres secured all three valuable points for the Blues.

It means the pressure is fully on Chelsea’s title rivals now, and with Manchester City playing tomorrow and Arsenal playing on Monday, it allows the Blues to secure top spot for 24 hours at least.

But Hull ran them close in the first half, stifling Chelsea attacks and posing a threat themselves, particularly as Elmohamady beat Ashley Cole for pace on more than one occasion.

But the current Europa League holders refused to press the panic button, and one moment of magic from Hazard settled Chelsea’s nerves. The Belgian cut inside from the left and faked his initial shot, and when the coast was clear, rifled past McGregor low into the bottom corner to record his ninth Premier League goal of the campaign.

And with the Hull side set up intent to get a draw from the off, their lack of adaptability when falling behind further played into Chelsea’s hands. The Tigers rarely looked like getting back into the match, and the icing on the cake was delivered by Fernando Torres’ low, left-foot drive with three minutes to spare.

It gives Chelsea now plenty of time to enjoy the weekend, and then prepare for next weekend’s mouth-watering clash against Manchester United.

Man of the Match

EDEN HAZARD: A precocious talent last year and now turning some of that potential into actuality. The Belgian is often deployed as a left-winger, but to believe the 23-year-old is a winger would be naïve. Almost always cuts inside and very often finds the back of the net, like today with a fantastic bit of trickery to fool his markers before burying his shot past McGregor. Magnificent. 8/10

Manager Reaction

Mourinho has praise for Hazard: “He [has been] playing very well for a long time. The club made a big investment in him last year because they trust him a lot. He is more than just a talented kid now. He feels and accepts the responsibility, accepts that a team player is more than a talented player. The kid is in a very good moment of his career with three consecutive man of the matches.”

Bruce was likewise complimentary of Chelsea’s attacking threat: “Hazard was for me the best player on the pitch. He scored a wonder goal and after that it became a very difficult afternoon, it became stretched and open and their top players had more space to show their quality.”