Chelsea 4-2 Tottenham Hotspur: FA Cup semi-final as it happened

Tony Mogan
International Business Times
  • Willian opened the scoring for Chelsea with a splendid free-kick from 25 yards out.

  • Harry Kane drew Spurs level with a brilliantly improvised header.

  • Willian restored lead for Blues from the penalty spot after Son's foul on Moses.

  • Dele Alli equalises again after sublime assist from Christian Eriksen.

  • Eden Hazard comes off the bench to score his side's third.

  • Nemanja Matic hammers fourth goal home from range to see off Spurs.

  • Antonio Conte's side will meet Arsenal or Manchester City in the final.


Full-time: Chelsea 4-2 Tottenham Hotspur

So close! Kane drills it through the wall and almost right through Courtois. The ball squirms underneath the Belgian but the backspin on the ball prevents it from crossing the line. That should be that.

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Alli strides past Luiz and has his heels clipped by Kante. Tottenham will have a chance to pull back a third from a free kick, but it could be the last action of the game.

Four minutes of time added on here.

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Hundreds have people have already piled out of the Tottenham end; Wembley way is already packed with those disappointed fans make their way home.

Diego Costa should have just made it five; nodding wide from five yards out. Tottenham look finished here.

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Nemanja Matic
Nemanja Matic

Matic may have booked Chelsea's place in the final. Five minutes of the 90 remaining.

Chelsea in for a fifth! Hazard draws Lloris out of goal but the angle is too narrow for him to take the shot on. He works it back to Alonso who hits a shot across goal but Alderweireld sticks out a boot to force it wide.

Chelsea may have just killed off Tottenham here! It is perfection from Nemanja Matic, who has picked the right moment to score his first goal of the season. The ball reaches him from about 25 yards out and the Serbian winds back his left foot and strikes the ball sweetly as can be, pinging it right into the top corner. Top bins. Postage stamp. Whatever we are calling it, Lloris was rooted to the spot as it cracked off the underside of the bar on its way to hitting the back of the net.

Goal! Chelsea 4-2 Tottenham (Nemanja Matic, 79)

15 minutes left; can Tottenham claw their way back again?

Chelsea lead! Again! From Chelsea's first corner of the match, it breaks to Hazard on the edge of the box. Three Tottenham players come at him, but they are too late; Hazard has already had enough time to drill home into the bottom corner.

Goal! Chelsea 3-2 Tottenham (Eden Hazard, 74)

Here's Chelsea's final change; Cesc Fabregas comes on for his compatriot Pedro.

There's a rare misplaced pass from Eriksen and it allows Moses to pounce. He races upfield to lift some of the pressure on his team before he is brought down by Alli. After taking one for the team, the goal scorer is shown a yellow card.

Hazard has done nothing since coming on; Wanyama and Dembele haven't let him.

*waits for Hazard to score the game's next goal*

Tottenham probe their way around the Chelsea box, trying to pick their way through with Alli and Eriksen's movement causing plenty of problems.

It doesn't look anything to elaborate mind, Trippier comes across to play on the left, Walker slots in at his usual spot on the right.

Here's Tottenham's first change of the match, Kyle Walker enters the fray to replace Son. That will require a bit of a reshuffle for Pochettino's side methinks.

Tottenham come on the counter and Alli tries to return the favour to Eriksen with another diagonal ball into the box. It's a decent ball, but the Dane can't get any real connection on the ball and it rolls towards Courtois for an easy collection.

Costa lurches forward for the first time, sliding a ball out for Alonso whose cross is charged down. Chelsea's first corner of the match? Nope, it's a throw in which Tottenham can clear.

No hat-trick for Willian today, he and Batshuayi are both coming off to make way for Diego Costa and Eden Hazard.

Aaand another one, as Dembele's shot crashes off Luiz and out behind the goal. Both Eden Hazard and Diego Costa have completed their warm ups and look ready to come on.

Alli wins a corner, darting inside Moses into the box.

In the immediate aftermath, there are appeals from Tottenham for a penalty, but replays show Ake looked to get his toes on the ball first after going in on Alli.

That is incredible from Christian Eriksen! The Dane produces the pass of the season, picking out Alli from the right with an inch perfect diagonal pass to find his teammate's incisive run into the box. It falls perfectly for Alli who rifles a superb finish into the top corner.

Goal! Chelsea 2-2 Tottenham (Dele Alli, 51)

Eriksen plays this corner short to Son and between them they make a complete mess of it, with Son's return pass sent straight to the feet of a Chelsea player.

Kane neatly gets inside Matic but Luiz is across to cover and force the cross out for a corner. Bright start from Tottenham at the start of this half.

Nick Howson at Wembley Stadium

All the talk about Chelsea's selection policy totally overshadowed Tottenham decision to deploy Son Heung-Min at full-back in the absence of Danny Rose. So far that selection is the difference between the two sides.

40 seconds into the second-half and Azpilicueta clatters through Kane. Nothing malicious mind, the Chelsea defender was quite simply done by the Spurs striker, taking him out with a trailing leg.

And we are back underway for the second-half at Wembley.

Half-time: Chelsea 2-1 Tottenham

Just before half-time, Alonso gets a yellow card for preventing Tottenham from taking a quick free-kick.

Big let-off for Spurs and Hugo Lloris there as the France international looked to clearly handle the ball outside of his box. No action is taken however and play continues. Two minutes of time added on to this half.

Moses has won that penalty, no question, but Son has made a huge error giving him the opportunity to do so. It's difficult to blame the Chelsea man for going over a little easy.

Goal! Chelsea 2-1 Tottenham (Willian, 42)

Oh dear, Son. Kante slides a ball down the inside right for Moses to trot onto just inside the box, but the South Korean slides in for no real reason right across the wing-back's path. There isn't a lot of contact, but Son is inviting Moses to go down there. Chelsea penalty.

PENALTY - Chelsea

Chelsea nearly gift one to Tottenham. Moses plays an inexplicable pass across the field straight to Eriksen, who opts to take on a quick shot from the edge of the box. It's a comfortable enough save for Courtois; the Dane would have been better off sliding a ball into Alli there.

Kane almost scampers in behind Luiz, but the Brazilian recovers just in time. This first-half has been relentless.

Tottenham close! Wanyama can't react quick enough to get onto Alderweireld's knock on, but manages to keep the ball in play and work it back to Vertonghen. His in-swinging cross into the box is excellent and Dier meets it with a glancing header, but nods it just wide of the post. Should have maybe done better with it.

Eriksen's delivery is good, but Kante sticks out a leg and just about manages to hook the ball out for a corner.

And they have another one, this time out on the right flank. Trippier feeds the ball back in field but is caught late by Alonso; who has been a good yard off the pace today.

Kane manages to scamper away from Luiz and is shoved to the ground for his trouble. Tottenham free-kick.

This is a brilliant duel at the moment. Son Hueng-min is showing interest in getting in behind Moses on the right while Alonso has looked a little sluggish on the other side after his recent absence. Possible options for Tottenham.

Harry Kane
Harry Kane

This picture doesn't do it enough justice; it was a wonderfully improvised header that has levelled the game here.

Luiz is grimacing a bit as he walks, but he's back on the pitch.

Replays show Dele Alli looked to have accidentally trodden on Luiz's ankle after the Brazilian had beaten him to the ball. He hobbles off to get some treatment with John Terry warming up in case.

Uh oh. David Luiz is down. He's playing everyone onside but he can't get to his feet to get back on. The ball eventually is put out of play and the Brazilian can get some treatment.

Chelsea clear the free-kick but Spurs have possession back already.

Now it's Chelsea's turn to look nervy. Ake makes a mess of a clearance with Eriksen quickly onto the loose ball. He tries to force a ball into the box but before he can he is wiped out by Alonso. Free kick out on the right for Spurs.

Tottenham are level! That corner comes back out to Eriksen, who has time to measure a precise cross into the six yard box. It finds Kane who improvises brilliantly, heading the ball towards the bottom corner with the back of his head and finding the net! That's an absurdly good finish.

Goal! Chelsea 1-1 Tottenham (Harry Kane, 17)

Kane wins a free kick for his side and makes a neat run off his marker in the box to force a corner off Kante.

A moment of panic for Chelsea fans; Azpilicueta slides a pass back to Courtois with Alli lurking just behind him. There is just enough pace on the pass to take it back to the Chelsea goalkeeper in time who sweeps clear.

Nick Howson at Wembley Stadium

Consider the script re-written by Antonio Conte and Chelsea. The pre-match narrative was all about the changes but the Blues have settled in this first semi-final and Tottenham are very much on the back-foot. Spurs have been sluggish from the outset.


Willian is mobbed by his teammates after that strike. Alderweireld was the one who gave away the free kick, an uncharacteristically wild and inaccurate sliding challenge that earned him his first yellow card in 41 appearances for Spurs.

Chelsea are all over Tottenham here. It's sloppy play from Vertonghen who hesitates with the ball at his feet. It isn't the sensible thing to do with N'Golo Kante on the scene and the Frenchman wins the ball from edge of the box, sliding a square pass inside to Batshuayi. The Belgian can't quite sort his feet out in time however and Spurs clear.

Brilliant from Willian! The Brazilian whips a wicked free kick over the wall and past Lloris! Could the Spurs goalkeeper have done better? Perhaps. It went in on his side of the goal and he was wrong footed as the free kick was struck.

Goal! Chelsea 1-0 Tottenham (Willian, 4)

Ake does superbly at the back to win the ball from Alli on the edge of his own box. His pass out from the back isn't bad either, finding Kante who shifts it onto Batshuayi, who flicks it inside for Pedro. The Pedro races towards the back with Alderweirleld sliding in trying to cut the back out, but he misses the ball completely and the free kick is given. Yellow card for Alderweireld.

Willian bursts forward the counter, bursting past Vertonghen on the inside right. It forces Dembele across to put the Brazilian under pressure and the ball breaks to Lloris who can heave it clear.

Kane robs the ball from Alonso a bit too easily out on the right and wins the first corner of the game off Ake.

And Tottenham get us underway for a spot in the FA Cup final on the line.

Here we go then; both teams are making their way out onto the pitch. Here's one last look at those line-ups:

Chelsea team to face Tottenham: Courtois; Azpilicueta (c), David Luiz, Ake; Moses, Kante, Matic, Alonso; Willian, Batshuayi, Pedro

Subs: Begovic, Zouma, Terry, Chalobah, Fabregas, Hazard and Diego Costa

Tottenham team to face Chelsea: Lloris (C), Trippier, Dier, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Wanyama, Dembele, Son, Eriksen, Dele, Kane

Subs: Lopez, Davies, Walker, Wimmer, Sissoko, Nkoudou, Janssen

Let's not forget, it has been a terribly difficult week for Tottenham. On Friday, former England international and their Under-23 coach Ugo Ehiogu passed away having suffered a cardiac arrest at the club's training ground the previous afternoon.

He will be remembered just before kick-off, with both sets of players to wear black armbands.

Ugo Ehiogu
Ugo Ehiogu

The big man is out warming up, but he won't be on the pitch for much longer; his game starts on the bench.

It's a bit more straight forward for Tottenham on the team selection front. Kieran Trippier has started and completed every game of the cup campaign so far this season; he has proven to be an able deputy for Kyle Walker this season and Mauricio Pochettino has decided to reward that.

The Spurs boss looks to have shifted to a flat-back four in the continued absence of Danny Rose, with Jan Vertonhen shifting over to the left side of defence. Mousa Dembele and Victor Wanyama will do battle with Nemanja Matic and N'Golo Kante in the middle of the park, and it is a familiar front four led by Harry Kane.

Have you heard Eden Hazard and Diego Costa have been left on the bench for Chelsea today? You have? Let's have a look at the rest of the team then. As expected, Thibaut Courtois is back in goal having recovered from the ankle problem that forced him out of last week's defeat to Manchester United.

Nathan Ake comes into replace Gary Cahill as part of that back three, with Cesar Azpilicueta wearing the captain's armband today. Marcos Alonso is also back having recovered from illness; he and Victor Moses take their places at left and right wing-back respectively.

N'Golo Kante and Nemanja Matic continue in midfield but is up front where things get interesting. Michy Batshuayi, a £30m summer signing from Marseille, starts just his sixth game of the season, flanked either side by Willian and Pedro.

Nick Howson at Wembley Stadium

If you want an insight into how Tottenham's recent run in the Premier League has affected Antonio Conte, just look at the Chelsea team news for today's FA Cup semi-final. The Italian is clearly rattled and with the Blues' lead down to four he hasn't risked either Diego Costa or Eden Hazard. Nathan Ake's inclusion ahead of Kurt Zouma is somewhat strange too. He's played just two games since returning from his loan spell at Bournemouth - when his last league outing came on 3 January.

Kristof Terreur of Belgium's HLN clears up a rumour spreading on Twitter that Eden Hazard is carrying an injury.

Wow, what a call by Antonio Conte. Eden Hazard and Diego Costa, responsible for 32 goals and 10 assists between them this season, are left on the bench.

Diego Costa
Diego Costa

Tottenham team to face Chelsea: Lloris (C), Trippier, Dier, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Wanyama, Dembele, Son, Eriksen, Dele, Kane

Subs: Lopez, Davies, Walker, Wimmer, Sissoko, Nkoudou, Janssen

BREAKING: Kyle Walker starts on the bench for Tottenham with Kieran Trippier given the nod at right-back.

Chelsea team to face Tottenham: Courtois; Azpilicueta (c), David Luiz, Ake; Moses, Kante, Matic, Alonso; Willian, Batshuayi, Pedro

Subs: Begovic, Zouma, Terry, Chalobah, Fabregas, Hazard and Diego Costa

BREAKING: Eden Hazard and Diego Costa both left out of Chelsea's starting XI by Antonio Conte.

Nathan Ake, recalled from his impressive loan spell at Bournemouth during the January window, is expected to start in place of Gary Cahill today. Antonio Conte all but confirmed it Saturday morning via the club's official website.

"He works very hard. His behaviours are great, fantastic. He never said nothing. Don't forget he was playing every game with Bournemouth and he wanted to come and stay with us and try to work together and help us fight for the title.

"He is a good player, he is ready to have this opportunity, this chance. He deserves this opportunity and I trust him. I have no problem taking this decision. In this system Ake has the right characteristics to be the substitute to Gary."

Nathan Ake
Nathan Ake

There could be some genuinely shocking team news about to hit. A number of reports now suggest both Eden Hazard and Diego Costa will be rested this afternoon, with the Blues in action at home to Southampton on Tuesday before travelling to Everton on Sunday.

With no European commitments this season, Chelsea have played 39 games to Tottenham's 46 in all competitions. There could be a huge backlash facing Antonio Conte if the club's two best players aren't starting in a FA Cup semi-final against their closest rivals.

Nick Howson at Wembley Stadium

No Hazard and Costa for Chelsea, and no Walker for Tottenham? The truth probably lies somewhere in the middle. Teams set to drop in the next few minutes.

On a slightly more positive note for Chelsea fans, Thibaut Courtois is expected to return today. The goalkeeper missed the defeat at Old Trafford due to an ankle problem with Asmir Begovic filling in to replace him but he is poised to return this afternoon.

Thibaut Courtois
Thibaut Courtois

Marcos Alonso is also expected to return after that sickness bug ruled him out last week.

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John Terry's next appearance for Chelsea could be his last one with the veteran set to call time on his Blues career at the end of the season. The skipper isn't an automatic replacement for Cahill this afternoon, however, with Nathan Ake thought to be Conte's preferred choice. Here is what his manager had to say on the subject on Friday.

John Terry
John Terry

"This season we have tried to have two options in every position, I think the right position for John when we play with three central defenders is in the central position, in the place that David Luiz is now playing. I have to make the best decision for the starting XI tomorrow."

Antonio Conte on Gary Cahill's chances of featuring this afternoon:

"This period is not a lucky period for us. When we started training on Tuesday he [Cahill] arrived at the training ground with a bit of a fever, and our doctor preferred to bring him to the hospital and check his condition, It's not a serious problem. Now Gary is getting better and is improving a lot. If you ask me for tomorrow my answer is it's very difficult, yes."

Team news: Tottenham

Mauricio Pochettino has a few injury concerns but none that will drastically alter his plans this afternoon. Danny Rose is still unavailable due to the knee injury suffered at the end of January, but a return could beckon for next Sunday's north London derby.

Michel Vorm and Cameron Carter-Vickers are ruled out through injury, which means Hugo Lloris is poised to start his first FA Cup game since 2014. Erik Lamela and Harry Winks meanwhile play again this season.

Danny Rose
Danny Rose

Team news: Chelsea

All signs would suggest Gary Cahill will not feature today. The England international was treated for gastroenteritis in hospital this week with Antonio Conte all but ruling him out when he spoke to the press on Friday.

It's the latest in a spate of illness problems to effect the Chelsea squad with Victor Moses and Diego Costa both suffering from a bug that ruled Marcos Alonso out completely.

Gary Cahill
Gary Cahill

Only two teams are in contention to win an FA Cup and Premier League double this season. By the end of the day, we will only be left with one. Tottenham's incredible run of form bolstered by two major slips from Chelsea mean there is still a title race to be run with the gap at just four points.

That title battle may technically be ice for a few days, but the consequences of today's result could stretch further than just securing as spot in May's FA Cup final. A victory for Chelsea or Tottenham could have a devastating psychological effect on the other today – and even destabilise the other's title bid.

Stick around, we have all your team news and build-up coming up.

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