Nemanja Matic’s stunning strike put the seal on Chelsea’s 4-2 FA Cup semi-final win over Premier League title rivals Tottenham as Antonio Conte’s side kept their double dream alive.
It was a ruthlessly efficient display of finishing from the Blues at Wembley, which has been the scene of nothing but misery for Spurs this season, having faltered under the arch in their failed Champions and Europa League campaigns.
Conte – whose name adorned a banner trailing a light aircraft flown over the stadium – sprung a surprise when he left Eden Hazard and Diego Costa on the bench, but Willian made the most of his inclusion with a fourth-minute free-kick and a penalty which was won by Victor Moses’ brilliant run on the stroke of half-time.
Spurs had twice fought back with Harry Kane’s stooping flicked header from Christian Eriksen’s pinpoint delivery, the Dane then teeing up Dele Alli to make it 2-2 in the 52nd minute.
It was Mauricio Pochettino’s side who were forcing the issue and looking the more likely to win it, but Conte called on Hazard and Costa from the bench, with the Belgium international’s low strike putting Chelsea ahead once more inside the final 15 minutes.
The Blues saved the best until last, Matic’s thunderous drive bouncing in off the crossbar to put Chelsea into the final and strike a psychological blow in the top-flight title race, Conte’s men four points clear of Spurs with six games left.
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