Middlesbrough (2nd Division), executioner in the round of 32 of Manchester United and Tottenham in the round of 16, could not overcome Chelsea’s obstacle this time and lost to that team (2-0), this Saturday in the quarterfinals of the FA Cup.
The ‘Blues’ thus became the first semifinalist of this edition, before the other three are known on Sunday.
The Londoners, qualified this week for the quarterfinals of the Champions League, showed once again that they manage to stay out of the convulsive moment that their entity is experiencing due to the sanctions against its owner, the Russian Roman Abramovich.
“We were very focused and very serious from the beginning. We showed our quality in the decisive moments and scored two goals early, which gave us a comfortable advantage, but we had to make a great effort not to allow them to have great opportunities, “said Chelsea’s German coach, Thomas Tuchel.
At the tip of the attack, Romelu Lukaku came back with a goal.
Mason Mount escaped down the right flank before sending a perfect cross so that the Belgian, who was perfectly situated so as not to be offside, finished six meters from the line, directly on goal (minute 15, 1-0) .
Shortly after half an hour it was the Moroccan Hakim Ziyech who received the ball, also on the right wing, and ended up sending a shot that made it 2-0, in minute 32.
Despite several chances in the second half, Chelsea were unable to extend their account, although they were not in trouble either.
Middlesbrough showed a less fierce face than in the previous two rounds.
– Real Madrid on the horizon –
Chelsea, already crowned in February in the Club World Cup, then saw the title slip away in the English League Cup, on penalties against Liverpool. In the Champions League, Friday’s draw paired him with Real Madrid, who will be his rival in the quarterfinals in April.
In the Premier League, Chelsea is third, far from the fight for the title.
All this without being able to forget the situation, with the possible sale of the club, which has attracted several offers, before the deadline, set on Friday.
The club is also fighting for a relaxation of the restrictions imposed by the British government in the framework of the sanctions against Abramovich, which prohibit him, for example, from selling new tickets to fans.
If he fails, the hundreds of Chelsea fans who flocked to Yorkshire on Saturday could be the last for a while to support their team away from home.
The quarterfinals of the FA Cup are completed on Sunday with duels Nottingham Forest-Liverpool, Crystal Palace-Everton and Southampton-Manchester City.