Brendan Rogers is a brilliant coach and more often he is overshadowed by the hype of the heavyweights around him. He is someone who can gel the boys together and make them fight against the odds. Surely they were the underdogs at Wembley against a rejuvenated Chelsea unit under Thomas Tuchel. Chelsea experienced hiccups against Arsenal in the Premier League but at Wembley, their credibility was much better than the Foxes. But the boys of Rogers fought hard and also had the luck beside them – the new champions of FA Cup are the Leicester City of Rogers.

Never mind that the Foxes had never beaten Chelsea in seven previous FA Cup ties or, more to the point, that they had never lifted the famous old trophy in their 137-year history.

For Leicester, it was the first major cup final appearance since 2000 when they beat Tranmere in the League Cup. Several of them had referenced last season’s Carabao Cup semi-final defeat to Aston Villa and the time has come to erase that painful memory of the past.

Tuchel went for Hakim Ziyech to Kai Havertz and Christian Pulisic on one of the inside forward roles and Marcos Alonso to Chilwell at left-back. On the other flank, it was significant to see James start in the back three and Cesar Azpilicueta play outside him.

The match was a slow-burner and it was Jamie Vardy who posed a threat within 17 minutes of the game but James was good enough to cope with the pace of Vardy and blocked him.

Mason Mount was at the center of Chelsea’s efforts as his quick movements caused problems at the backline of the Foxes.

He watched a low shot fly wide with Thiago Silva dinking the ball back towards the far post. Timo Werner went for the header to make the faintest of connections only for this to take it away from the better-placed Azpilicueta behind him – it was a good chance.

Jonny Evans lasted for 33 minutes and Rogers went with Marc Albrighton on at right wing-back and Castagne moving inside, but there was no change to the 3-5-2 shape, in which Perez worked to the left of the midfield three.

The Foxes dominated the middle of the park and gave the Blues little space to move.

Chelsea lacked the edge and Foxes grew stronger enough with each passing minute.

Youri Tielemans collected a short pass from Luke Thomas after a Reece James clearance had hit Ayoze Perez 63 minutes into the second half, he put everything he had into the shot and watched it fly high into the top corner from outside the area.

Kepa Arrizabalaga went for the ball with his wrong hand and Leicester were on their way.

Chelsea switched formations and tried to penetrate the resolute and determined Foxes defence.

In the 89th minute, the Blues thought they had found the equalizer when Chilwell got in around the back to push one towards the goal and the ball ricocheted off Calgar Soyuncu to fly in off the substitute, Wes Morgan, and guess what, VAR ruled Chilwell had strayed offside.

Lady luck was on the side of Rogers.

Leicester players and fans erupt in glee – it had been a historic victory.

A huge beam played across Brendan Rodgers’ face, who waved up at the club owner Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha.

It was more than a victory for the club that showed character.

“Thank you, VAR! Really, what an amazing thing that is!” Tielemans laughed when asked about the decision,” said Tielemans to BT Sport after the match.

“It’s a tough decision but when you have to make it, you have to make it. Maybe it was tight but it was offside, and you have to give that call.”

“It feels really good! It’s amazing! I am really glad to score the goal that helped the team to win the game,” Tielemans added to the BBC.

“It was a really tight game. To score in the final … what a goal that was! I am really happy for the team and the fans! The goal was really good!”

“It is really special to have the fans in today. I hope everyone was safe. And the fans watching it from home, I hope they are proud of us. I am sure they are.”

“It’s an amazing feeling. I wasn’t aware before I came to Leicester that they hadn’t won the FA Cup. So to be able to give that to these supporters, plus Top and his family make this a special day. It’s a real collective effort at Leicester, from the board, players, staff and supporters,” said Rogers after the match.

“It’s an amazing day for the city. Youri’s goal was like an old-school FA-Cup-winning goal, but also Kasper’s saves.”

“I thought we were the better team overall. We were super-aggressive and always a threat with the ball. Chelsea are an amazing team but I thought we deserved to win. It’s the FA Cup, and as a British coach, it means so much. I’m so proud, but happier for everyone else. A monumental performance and what a day for everyone involved with Leicester!”

Everyone associated with Leicester was overjoyed at this result. It was a testament to the club’s ownership, which has gone about things the right way ever since Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha arrived. No doubt the players have done their late owner proud. Rodgers became the first boss to win both the English and Scottish FA Cups since one Sir Alex Ferguson.


Whereas, Chelsea became the first side to lose FA Cup finals in consecutive seasons since Newcastle United in 1998 and 1999.

Facebook Comments