Chelsea booked an FA Cup final date against Manchester United after beating Southampton by a 2-0 scoreline on Sunday. Olivier Giroud and Alvaro Morata were on the scoresheet for the Blues during the second period as they ensured their progress to their second final in the competition in as many seasons.
Three things we learned:
Olivier Giroud continues his fine FA Cup record: Giroud had been in a good run of form coming into the game after netting a match-winning brace at Southampton last weekend. Obviously, the Frenchman’s record against the Saints has been mostly talked about but his opener on Sunday meant that he has contributed towards 22 goals in just 26 FA Cup appearances. This includes a couple of match-winning assists for ex-Arsenal teammate Aaron Ramsey in the 2014 and 2017 editions of the FA Cup final.
Chelsea can send off Antonio Conte on a high: Antonio Conte’s position at Stamford Bridge remains uncertain despite the Blues having progressed to the FA Cup final. Whilst Conte has refused to comment on his future, the Blues’ hierarchy have presumably made their mind up to recruit a new head coach. As such, Chelsea players have the opportunity to end the Italian’s tenure on a high and the 48-year-old would no doubt love another chance to trump United boss Jose Mourinho to lift the FA Cup.
Chelsea’s push for a top-four finish: Until last weekend, Chelsea looked down and out in their top-four pursuit as they surrendered a 2-0 goal advantage to Southampton. However, they managed to script a dramatic comeback to secure a 3-2 triumph and they have since won back-to-back games across all competitions. During the same period, fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur have gone winless and the Blues can now put more pressure on their cross-town rivals whose 10-point advantage has been halved in a week.