Chelsea gained the Tremendous Cup in dramatic circumstances as Kepa Arrizabalaga got here off the bench to be the penalty hero towards Villarreal.
With the groups locked at 1-1 after extra-time it took a 6-5 win on penalties at Windsor Park in Belfast for Thomas Tuchel’s aspect to win it due to their substitute goalkeeper.
Kepa solely got here on for Edouard Mendy with seconds remaining however after saving from Aissa Mendy to cancel out Kai Havertz’s miss, he gained the trophy by denying Raul Albiol.
Chelsea had taken a deserved lead after 27 minutes due to Hakim Ziyech however Villarreal improved from there and earned their equaliser via Gerard Moreno after 73 minutes.
Neither workforce discovered a winner in extra-time however Tuchel’s shock tactical swap secured Chelsea their second Tremendous Cup win and their first for 23 years.
How Chelsea gained the Tremendous Cup
Villarreal defended deep from the outset with Chelsea wing-backs Callum Hudson-Odoi and Marcos Alonso each getting in behind inside the primary 5 minutes of the match.
Timo Werner compelled a wise save from Sergio Asenjo with a volley from a nook and N’Golo Kante, captaining Chelsea, then gained the ball again earlier than simply firing huge of the goal.
Unai Emery’s aspect appeared to settle by the halfway level of the primary half however have been then caught out by a superb Chelsea transfer instigated by Alonso from deep on the left.
His go discovered the run of Havertz and the German’s cut-back from the huge place went behind Werner however fell properly for Ziyech to divert the ball into the web.
Sadly for Ziyech, his night was over quickly after. A mid-air collision with Juan Foyth resulted in an harm to his shoulder and loads of ache. Christian Pulisic changed him.
The incident appeared to curtail Chelsea’s momentum and Villarreal, having already examined Edouard Mendy via Boulaye Dia got here near equalising in first-half stoppage time.
Gerard Moreno twisted and turned in the proper channel, discovering sufficient house to cross to the far publish and discover Alberto Moreno whose left-footed volley crashed off the crossbar.
Thomas Tuchel went with 5 of the beginning line-up that gained the Champions League closing towards Manchester Metropolis in Might with Callum Hudson Odoi at wing-back and Kai Havertz persevering with in assault. Villarreal’s goalscorer within the Europa League closing, Gerard Moreno, was in Unai Emery’s workforce however goalkeeping hero from that recreation, Geronimo Rulli, was on the bench.
With six of the earlier eight Tremendous Cups having gone to extra-time, it was one other reminder for Chelsea that regardless of their sturdy begin the job was not but achieved.
It turned out to be an indication of issues to return too as Villarreal pushed for the equaliser.
They got here very near discovering it when Mendy’s slip whereas kicking allowed Gerard Moreno to run via however the goalkeeper recovered to push the shot towards the foot of the publish.
With stress constructing, younger Trevor Chalobah was very busy on the again, often caught out of place however all the time combative as Chelsea battled to retain their benefit.
Tuchel has made a behavior of racking up 1-0 wins within the massive video games however there was to be no repeat right here – the leveller coming within the 73rd minute when Dia teed up Gerard Moreno.
It was superb work by the Spain worldwide, a deserved equaliser on the idea of Villarreal’s efforts upon going behind. and a purpose that made him the membership’s file goalscorer.
Chelsea turned to the bench however couldn’t flip the tide, Villarreal ending the stronger in regular time and persevering with to dominate possession into extra-time with out creating a lot.
The truth is, it was Pulisic who had the primary good likelihood throughout the additional interval, his shot just a bit rushed when properly positioned contained in the field after good work by fellow sub Mason Mount.
Mount himself had the subsequent likelihood, drawing a formidable save from Asenjo excessive to the goalkeeper’s left, however there was no extra-time winner – simply substitution drama.
Chelsea: Mendy (7), Zouma (6), Chalobah (6), Rudiger (6), Hudson-Odoi (6), Kante (7), Kovacic (7), Alonso (7), Ziyech (7), Havertz (7), Werner (6).
Subs Pulisic (6), Jorginho (6), Mount (7), Christensen (6), Azpilicueta (6), Kepa (7).
Villarreal: Asenjo (7), Foyth (7), Albiol (7), Pau Torres (6), Pedraza (6), Trigueros (6), Capoue (6), Alberto Moreno (6), Pino (5), Gerard Moreno (7), Dia (7).
Subs Estupinan (7), Gaspar (6), Gomez (6), Raba (6), Morlanes (6), Mandi (5).
Tuchel turned to Kepa to switch Mendy in Chelsea’s purpose with seconds remaining, an ironic swap on condition that the Spaniard refused to be subbed within the 2019 Carabao Cup closing.
When Havertz noticed the primary kick saved by Asenjo, Kepa was already underneath stress and although he was unable to maintain out Gerard Moreno’s kick, he did save properly from Aissa Mandi.
Cesar Azpilicueta, Alonso and Mount all transformed their penalties earlier than Jorginho additionally beat Asenjo, placing proper his error from the spot within the closing of Euro 2020 simply weeks earlier.
It went to the seventh kicks with Antonio Rudiger stroking the ball calmly dwelling earlier than the veteran Albiol was unable to match him, Kepa saving neatly away to his proper.
It vindicated Tuchel’s resolution because the Chelsea coach added a second trophy to the Champions League that he gained in Might.
He can do no flawed.
It’s a fast turnaround for Chelsea. Their Premier League season begins towards Crystal Palace at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.