Chelsea defeated PSG 2-0 to book their place in the last four. The Blues overturned the first leg in an amazing match at Stamford Bridge. Mourinho set his team out to get the much needed goals that will enable them qualify for the next stage – and they did that emphatically. Chelsea advanced to the semi-final for the 7th time in 10 years courtesy of goals from Andre Schurlle and Demba Ba.
Eto’o spearheaded the attack this time around. Both teams had half chances on goal in the early minutes, but the game did not really come to life until Andre Schurlle replaced injured Eden Hazard. The PSG defence could not do anything about a corner kick into their area just after the hour mark. As the PSG players were scrambling to get the ball out of the box, the ball fell to Schurlle from a Luiz touch. The German had all the time in the world and he duly fired home to make it 1-0 for the host.
PSG players were particularly uninspiring as the game continued. Chelsea continued to search for another goal and they came very close a couple of times. Cahill missed a sitter to make it 2-0 just minutes after the first goal. Andre Schurlle also hit the bar early in the second half.
Mourinho sent on Demba Ba for Lampard after 66 minutes as the Blues continued to search for the second goal. Cavani almost equalized for the visitors but the Uruguayan could not direct his shot properly. Mourinho then made the final change to increase the pressure on PSG. It was Fernando Torres’ turn to join the party. Couple of minutes later, it happened.
Demba Ba scored arguably the most important goal of his career as the goal that got the Blues into the semi-final. Cahill’s long ball was not dealt with and it somehow fell to Azpilicueta. The Spaniard squared the ball across the area; Ba beat Maxwell to sweep the ball into goal. The goal got sent the Stamford Bridge crowd into jubilation mode. It even got Mourinho to do his trademark pitch invasion celebration.
PSG threatened Petr Cech a bit after the goal but nothing could stop Chelsea from making the semi-finals. Just like the match against Napoli in 2012, Chelsea clawed their way back to progress in the Champions League. Jose Mourinho read the game well and his substitutions were on point. It should be said that the French side did little to help themselves in London. They were fairly lacklustre throughout.
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Mourinho on‘his celebration’: “I wasn’t celebrating. I ran to tell Fernando and Demba the changes we had to do; because still three minutes plus extra time, and playing the way were playing it was too risky. I wanted Nando to defend Maxwell.
On the general performance he said: “I think we did enough in the beginning of the second half to score before, but we couldn’t. They played pure counter-attack, no ball possession, closed everything, and it was difficult for us to penetrate.
“We trained yesterday the three systems we used – the one from the start, the one without Lampard, and finally the one with Demba and Nando. So the players knew what to do. The team that decided to defend was punished, and the team that gave everything deserved to go through to the semis”
Laurent Blanc conceded that Chelsea were the better side“Chelsea were much better in the second half and they were rewarded. Good luck to them.
“Over the two legs there was very little to separate the two sides. I think Chelsea’s experience gave them a little extra.”