Everton 2-0 Chelsea

13 Mar

Romelu Lukaku fired a late brace at Goodison Park to send Everton into the FA Cup semi-finals at the expense of Chelsea.


Match Reports: Everton 2-0 ChelseaMatch Reports: Everton 2-0 Chelsea

The first half saw the game threatening to come to life but, with chances at a premium, it was always bubbling just beneath the surface.

It finally burst into life 13 minutes from the end, with Lukaku leaving a trail of Chelsea defenders in his wake before firing past Thibaut Courtois to send the Everton fans wild.

Within five minutes, Lukaku doubled the lead and, in a frantic finale, Diego Costa and Gareth Barry were both given their marching orders for second bookable offences.

The early exchanges were dominated by Costa, with the Chelsea striker seemingly on one of his tempestuous evenings as he clashed with Barry, not for the last time on the night.

Lukaku had a half chance for Everton midway through the first half but couldn’t rise high enough to direct Seamus Coleman’s cross on target.

At the other end, Willian drew a fingertip save from Joel Robles with a trademark free-kick as half-time approached.

The Toffees grew in stature the longer the game wore on, but there was little sign of a breakthrough goal arriving.

That all changed on 77 minutes when Lukaku displayed his full repertoire for an outstanding strike.

Collecting the ball wide on the left, he powerfully brushed off the attentions of Branislav Ivanovic and Cesar Azpilicueta to force his way into the box.

He then showed nimble feet to dance away from John Obi Mikel before finally evading Gary Cahill and slotting the ball past Courtois for a stunning goal.

Guus Hiddink reacted by throwing on Loic Remy but, just as he arrived, Ross Barkley slid the ball through for Lukaku in the box and he drove the ball underneath Courtois into the net with eight minutes left.

Things got worse for Chelsea as Costa reacted angrily to a challenge from Barry. The Spaniard got up close and personal with the Everton midfielder, with both players earning a yellow card for their troubles which was enough to see Costa sent off with five minutes left.

As the clock ticked down, Barry tripped Cesc Fabregas as he tried to launch a counter-attack and referee Michael Oliver was left with little choice but to dismiss him.

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