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Chelsea 1 Zenit St Petersburg 0 LIVE REACTION: Lukaku nets winner as Champions League holders make winning start

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CHELSEA started their Champions League title defence with a house victory in opposition to Russian facet Zenit.

Romelu Lukaku as soon as once more proved to be the distinction, heading house from a pinpoint Cesar Azpilicueta cross within the second half.

  • Final rating: Chelsea 1 Zenit 0

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  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 22:38

    GOODBYE FROM THE BRIDGE

    One-nil to the Chelsea! This season’s Champions League marketing campaign has begun in the identical method as the final ended.

    While tonight’s slender victory will not be celebrated as wildly as May’s closing triumph, the way by which the holders dug out a gap day win will please Thomas Tuchel and his acolytes.

    Romelu Lukaku as soon as once more did the job he was introduced again for, scoring the decisive objective when all different routes regarded futile.

    So the Champions League holders are up and working for 2021-22, tomorrow it is going to be the flip of the overwhelmed finalists. Manchester City’s house fixture with RB Leipzig is one among eight group video games on the agenda, and you may observe all of the motion with us right here.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 22:27

    KEEPING IT CLEAN

    Thirteen? Unlucky for some, maybe, however not Edouard Mendy.

    The Chelsea goalkeeper survived an damage scare within the warm-up this night to maintain his tenth Champions League clear sheet. The spectacular milestone has been introduced up in simply 13 appearances since he joined the membership.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 22:23

    THOMAS NEVER DOUBTED

    Chelsea head coach Thomas Tuchel has expressed his delight on the dedication proven by his gamers to interrupt down a resilient Zenit Saint Petersburg facet.

    “It was not irritating, it was powerful in opposition to a really robust opponent.

    “We needed to work actually arduous to have excessive ball recoveries which we did. We introduced an enormous depth to the sport, and we tried to maintain the depth excessive, on and off the ball, but it surely took time.

    “We struggled to create probabilities and photographs within the first half. The second half was a bit simpler for us to search out little area, and discover these moments to shoot and create probabilities.

    “It was a deserved win, but it was hard work.”

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 22:03

    H-ERE WE GO

    Favourites to high quality earlier than a ball was kicked, Juventus and Chelsea already discover themselves on the high of Group H after matchday one. However, whereas the Blues laboured to their house success, Juve cruised to victory in Sweden with their closing objective coming courtesy of former Chelsea ahead, Alvaro Morata.

    • Chelsea 1-0 Zenit
    • Malmo 0-3 Juventus
    Credit: UEFA.COM
  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:59

    FULL TIME STATS

    Chelsea created little at Stamford Bridge, however when you could have a finisher of Romelu Lukaku’s calibre, there’s all the time an opportunity. The striker scored the sport’s solely objective from his solely try heading in the right direction this night.

    Credit: UEFA.COM
  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:55

    FT: CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    The Champions League holders start their defence with a win in Group H, however they needed to work arduous for it. Against a disciplined Zenit facet, the Blues huffed and puffed with out pleasure till Romelu Lukaku continued his vibrant start to life again on the Bridge by rising highest to go house Cesar Azpilicueta’s cross.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:51

    PEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEP!
    THE FINAL WHISTLE IS BLOWN!

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:51

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    90+4. A superb sort out from Douglas Santos denies Romelu Lukaku a second objective that will have sealed the factors in type.

    The striker regarded in objective following a fast Chelsea counter, just for the Zenit captain to execute arguably the problem of the evening with the sport’s final act.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:49

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    90+3. Ruben Loftus-Cheek’s reward for his slapdash performances on mortgage at Fulham final season is a Champions League cameo.

    The midfielder comes on for Mason Mount.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:49

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    90. Four minutes of extra time are signalled by the fourth official.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:48

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    89. On commentary, Ian Darke factors out that Zenit’s solely earlier win in England was in opposition to Bradford at Valley Parade within the Intertoto Cup.

    *Insert no matter occurred to Bradford/the Intertoto Cup remark right here*

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:46

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    88. The final rolls of Sergei Semak’s cube. Andrei Mostovoy and Danil Krugovoi are on, Claudinho and Yaroslav Rakits’kyy go off.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:44

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    87. Just a couple of minutes stay, and Chelsea nonetheless lead however solely by one objective.

    And as we all know, when it is just one objective, something can occur.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:43

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    85. Rudiger continues to reinvent himself as a marauding winger as he goes on one other surging run down the left.

    This time, he slips in Chilwell on the overlap, however the substitute’s cross is reduce out by a panicked Zenit defence.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:42

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    83. The lesser-seen Ben Chilwell. The defender is on for Marcos Alonso as Thiago Silva replaces Cesar Azplicueta.

    Zenit have additionally made a change, Kirill Kravtsov has come on for Daler Kuzyaev.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:39

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    80. Dzyuba! Must be! Wide!

    Three fast passes and Azmoun finds himself in on the appropriate, and his first time supply seems good for his strike companion sliding in.

    Dzyuba will get his foot to the low cross, however with out the ability essential to take it past Mendy. Instead the try trickles broad, and the striker crashes into the house goalkeeper.

    A giant likelihood for the large man to equalise, however Chelsea survive.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:36

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    79. Ben Chilwell warms up and appears set to play his first minutes of soccer since final season.

    So clearly that is the cue for Alonso to indicate off his expertise by twisting previous two defenders and firing a shot simply broad.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:34

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    77. It seems the guests are going to take a extra direct route now following the introduction of Dzyuba.

    The 33-year-old is an absolute unit up entrance.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:32

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    75. A double substitution from Zenit, and Sergei Semak is clearly chasing the equaliser.

    The massive man, Artem Dzyuba, is on to companion Azmoun, and in addition on is the Russian worldwide, Aleksandr Erokhin. Off go Wendel and Malcom.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:30

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    72. Mount nearly provides a quickfire second, however makes an attempt one flip too many in his need to search out area to shoot within the field.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:29

    CHELSEA 1-0 ZENIT

    69. Romelu Lukaku has his first Champions League objective for Chelsea!

    The striker as soon as once more reveals his value simply when it regarded as although his facet had run out of concepts to interrupt down a cussed Zenit outfit.

    Cesar Azplicueta performed his half, delivering a scrumptious deep cross from the appropriate, and there was Lukaku, peeling off his marker on the again put up, to go delicately down and previous Stanislav Kritsyuk.

    The Champions League holders are off and working!

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:26

    GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLL!!
    ROMELU LUKAKU BREAKS THE DEADLOCK!!

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:25

    CHELSEA 0-0 ZENIT

    68. Another glimpse of the Zenit menace on the counter.

    Azmoun fails to regulate a fast cross ahead, however Wendel follows up and takes sight. He unleashes a protracted vary roller that is plucked out of the air by Mendy,

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:24

    CHELSEA 0-0 ZENIT

    66. More stress. More corners. Again, Alonso fails to get his deliveries away from the Zenit goalkeeper.

  • Sam Dymond14th Sep 2021, 21:23

    CHELSEA 0-0 ZENIT

    64. Chelsea maintain pushing and probing. The sport is being performed nearly totally within the Zenit half.

    The house facet even drive a few corners which have Kritsyuk flapping the ball away from the hazard.

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