Chelsea 2-1 Palace: More Willian electricity
- Willian scores 13th of season
- Blues off to Barcelona at midweek
- Van Aanholt scores 90'
Willian was the danger man and his goal was joined by a Martin Kelly own goal as Chelsea cruised past Crystal Palace 2-1 at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.
Patrick van Aanholt scored a 90th minute goal to pull one back for Palace.
The Blues remain comfortably fifth with 56 points while injury-hit Palace remains 18th but did get a Wilfried Zaha substitute appearance.
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Chelsea was in control early, and Wayne Hennessey answered the bell when Giroud redirected N’Golo Kante’s shot on target.
Willian then hit a low shot toward the near post that Hennessey collected with a dive.
The Brazilian got it over the line in the 25th minute, cutting into the center of the park and seeing a slightly-deflected offering beat Hennessey to the near post.
A well-worked Chelsea move saw Willian allow a Marcos Alonso cross through his leg to Hazard, who cued Zappacosta for a shot that turned off two Crystal Palace players and into the goal.
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13 - Willian has scored 13 goals for Chelsea in all competitions this season - his best ever return in a single campaign for the club. Samba.— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) March 10, 2018
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Chelsea opened the second half with a poor giveaway, and Alexander Sorloth cranked a shot off the near post as Palace failed to pull back a goal.
Willian worked a 1-2 with Giroud, but took an extra touch on the return ball and saw his shot blocked by James Tomkins.
Hennessey denied Hazard in the 55th minute, as Chelsea looked to keep its form firing on all cylinders ahead of the midweek match with Barcelona.
Wilfried Zaha won a free kick on the left edge of the 18, and his blocked shot found Patrick van Aanholt. His shot was caught by Thibaut Courtois.
A Willian free kick at the other end beat the wall but not the flying parry of Hennessey. And Giroud hit the post in the 67th.
Sorloth had an 85th minute goal pulled back for undisclosed reasons, as Palace probably should’ve had 2-1 with five minutes to play. It got its goal when Van Aanholt prodded a shot through Courtois’ legs in the 90th minute.