Football: Chelsea beats Manchester United 1-0 to win English FA Cup

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

London-based football club Chelsea defeated Manchester United 1–0 at the Wembley stadium on Monday to win the English FA Cup. Belgian winger Eden Hazard, who was brought down by Manchester's Phil Jones in the penalty area, scored the only goal — a 22nd minute penalty — to win the match for The Blues as they won their eight FA Cup trophy, their first since 2012.

United had greater ball possession — 67%, twice Chelsea's. Manchester had eighteen shots, managing five on target; while the Londoners had just six shots, three on target. Early, in the first ten minutes, Hazard attempted to score a left-footed shot in the left corner, assisted by Tiemoué Bakayoko. Soon after 20 minutes on the clock, United defender Jones committed a foul on Hazard in the penalty area and was shown a yellow card. Match official Martin Oliver referred to video assistant referee and awarded Chelsea a penalty kick. Taking a short run, Hazard converted the spot-kick into a goal, sending United's goalkeeper David De Gea in the wrong direction. The first half ended in a 1–0 lead for The Blues, with Phil Jones the only one booked in that half.

In the 56th minute, United came close to equalising, but Chelsea's goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois denied Marcus Rashford the chance to level up. A couple of minutes later, Manchester United's Antonio Valencia was shown yellow. In the 63rd minute, Alexis Sanchez almost equalised for United, from Jones's assist, but was caught offside. Manchester made a double-substitution in the 73rd minute as Belgian forward Romelu Lukaku came on for Rashford and Anthony Martial replaced injured Jesse Lingard.

Spanish midfielder Juan Mata replaced Jones in the 87th minute, and Chelsea made their first substitution in the 89th minute when Álvaro Morata came on for Olivier Giroud. Hazard was replaced by Willian in the injury time, and Chelsea's Belgian goalkeeper Courtois got booked minutes before the final whistle.

This was the first domestic cup victory for the Italian manager Antonio Conte, who lost last year's FA Cup against Arsenal FC. Conte's Chelsea won the Premier League last season but finished fifth this time, missing out the UEFA Champions League qualification for next season.

After the victory, Conte said, "I'm very satisfied because today was very difficult [...] To win the FA Cup against a really strong team — a really great team like Manchester United — we must be pleased. It wasn't easy, but I'm very happy for our fans, for my players."

United's manager and former Chelsea boss José Mourinho said, "I congratulate them but I don't think they deserved to win". The Portuguese added, "Every defeat hurts, but for me personally the ones that hurt less are when you give everything and you go without any regrets. [...] I knew the opponent I was going to play against. I knew they have a compact low block with lots of physicality where they try to close everything." Manchester United finished second in the league this season, nineteen points behind their city rivals Manchester City.

FA Cup winners Chelsea earned 1.8 million British pounds prize money.

May 19, 2018
Chelsea 1–0 Manchester United Wembley Stadium, London, England
Attendance: 87,647
Referee: Michael Oliver (England)
Eden Hazard Scored after 22 minutes 22' (pen.)
Thibaut Courtois Booked after 90+3 minutes 90+3'
(1–0) HT Phil Jones Booked after 21 minutes 21'
Antonio Valencia Booked after 58 minutes 58'