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Chelsea 2-1 Bournemouth: Blues end Pochettino’s first season with 5th straight win

Chelsea made it five straight wins to close out the 2023-24 Premier League season on Sunday, beating Bournemouth 2-1 at Stamford Bridge.

[ MORE: Upcoming Premier League schedule | Live PL table ]

The Blues (63 points) needed Tottenham to lose on the final day to overtake their rivals for 5th place and qualify for the Europa League next season, but it’ll be Europa Conference League instead. The defeat means Bournemouth (48 points) finish 12th, whereas a win would have meant top half. Alas, Andoni Iraola’s first season in charge was an incredible success nonetheless.

Moises Caicedo opened the scoring with one of the goals of the season, scoring from a yard inside the halfway line in the 17th minute. Neto was well out of his penalty area after playing the ball forward and Caicedo, as he does, wound up with it at midfield, saw his opening and went for glory. It ducked just under the crossbar and found the back of the net.

Raheem Sterling went one-on-three down the left wing, weaving his way past all three before sneaking a low finish between Neto’s legs from a tight angle at the near post. Cole Palmer played Sterling in behind the Bournemouth defense with a through ball from the center circle. The Cherries got a goal back in the 49th minute when Benoit Badiashile got the final touch before the ball went into his own net.

By the end, Bournemouth were hammering on the door for an equalizer, but the finishing quality simply wasn’t there.

This summer, next season about making this Pochettino’s team

Chelsea lost more games (10) than they won (nine) of their first 23 this season, and Mauricio Pochettino looked like he might not see the end of season one at Chelsea. Over the final 15 games, just one defeat. Injuries were a big part of the early-season struggles, just as good health played its part in the turnaround.

They did it by scoring loads of goals in the second half of the season (failing to score two or more goals just twice in 15 games), but they still don’t resemble anything close to a Pochettino team defensively, and that’s where he’ll undoubtedly look to improve the squad next season.

Player ratings - Chelsea vs Bournemouth

Chelsea vs Bournemouth highlights, final score: 2-1

Goalscorers: Moises Caicedo (17'), Raheem Sterling (48'), Benoit Badiashile (50' - OG)

GOAL - Chelsea 2-0 Bournemouth: Raheem Sterling doubles the lead shortly after the restart

Sterling slots home Chelsea's second v. Cherries
Raheem Sterling manages to sneak his effort into the back of the net from an awkward angle to double Chelsea's lead against Bournemouth at Stamford Bridge.

GOAL - Chelsea 1-0 Bournemouth: Moises Caicedo scores from the halfway line

Caicedo's belter gives Chelsea lead v. Cherries
Moises Caicedo lines up his effort beyond the center circle and unleashes a powerful effort that sails into the empty net to give Chelsea an early 1-0 lead over Bournemouth at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea starting lineup

Petrovic — Chalobah, Silva, Badiashile, Cucurella — Caicedo, Gallagher, Palmer — Madueke, Sterling, Jackson

Bournemouth starting lineup

Neto — Aarons, Zabarnyi, Senesi, Kerkez — Christie, Cook, Kluivert — Semenyo, Tavernier, Unal

How to watch Chelsea vs Bournemouth live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 11am ET Sunday (May 19)
TV Channel: Golf
Online: Watch live online via & Premier League on Peacock

Chelsea focus, team news

Four wins in a row shows that Chelsea have found some understanding and rhythm in their game and Nicolas Jackson, Cole Palmer and Conor Gallagher have all been excellent in recent weeks with Moises Caicedo also finally finding his feet and Marc Cucurella has been superb at left back. Having Christopher Nkunku back fit has also been a huge boost.

OUT: Reece James (suspension), Mykhailo Mudryk (head), Enzo Fernandez (groin), Romeo Lavia (hamstring - out for season), Wesley Fofana (torn ACL - out for season), Robert Sanchez (illness)

Bournemouth focus, team news

The Cherries have some defensive players back, which is a big boost, and Iraola will likely go with Smith, Senesi, Zabarnyi and Kerkez in defense. The front three of Kluivert, Solanke and Semenyo have been so consistent and cause so many problems with their direct running and interchanging.

OUT: Luis Sinisterra (thigh), Ryan Fredericks (calf), Chris Mepham (illness)