Hazard earns Chelsea FA Cup glory

19 May 2018 14:17:14 EST

Chelsea edged out Manchester United 1-0 to win the FA Cup final at Wembley, with Eden Hazard the matchwinner for the Blues.

United boss Jose Mourinho handed a starting role to England forward Marcus Rashford, with Romelu Lukaku having not fully recovered from an injury.

Meanwhile, Blues head coach Antonio Conte gave Olivier Giroud the nod in attack, with Thibaut Courtois preferred to Willy Caballero in goal.

Neither side showed too much attacking intent in the opening stages, although nine minutes in David de Gea had to be alert to block a Hazard effort at his near post.

Hazard then broke the game open with 21 minutes played as he ran clear before being sent crashing in the area by Phil Jones.

The Belgian got up to coolly send De Gea the wrong way from the resulting penalty kick and give the Blues a 1-0 lead.

Wayward efforts from Paul Pogba and Alexis Sanchez were the best United could offer in response, as Chelsea reached half-time in the ascendancy.

The second half opened with the Red Devils showing far more attacking intent, while Chelsea appeared happy to sit deep and play on the counter.

United thought they had levelled just past the hour mark when Sanchez netted from close range, but an offside flag went up to deny the striker after Courtois had superbly kept out an initial header from Jones.

De Gea then came to the rescue for the men from Manchester as he stood up tall to block a Marcos Alonso shot from a mere eight yards out.

That was the signal for Lukaku and Anthony Martial to enter the fray, with Matic again trying his luck, only to shoot straight at Courtois from 25 yards out.

Pogba then failed to hit the target with an unmarked header from a corner and Chelsea were able to withstand some late pressure to celebrate an eighth FA Cup success.

The Blues are now priced at 12/1 to win the Premier League title next season, with United available at 80/1 and Liverpool 5/2.

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