Footy Times

Chelsea beat Sheffield to end poor run

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Chelsea secured a hard-fought 2-0 victory over Premier League strugglers Sheffield United, thanks to a second-half brace on a dramatic night at Stamford Bridge.

The deadlock was broken in the 54th minute by an inspired Cole Palmer, who deftly finished from six meters out, following a slick one-two with the dynamic Raheem Sterling. The Chelsea faithful erupted as Palmer’s strike hit the back of the net, breaking the tension that had been building.

Palmer, not content with just scoring, turned into a playmaker just seven minutes later. He capitalized on a fumbled save by United’s Wes Foderingham amidst a goalmouth scramble, smartly setting up Nicolas Jackson. Jackson, unmarked and poised at the far post, effortlessly slotted the ball home, doubling Chelsea’s lead and sending the home crowd into a frenzy.

The first half was a different story, with Chris Wilder’s Sheffield United displaying a masterclass in defensive grit. They effectively smothered Chelsea’s attacking forays, leaving forwards Mykhailo Mudryk and Jackson exasperated and starved for space.

Mauricio Pochettino’s star-studded Chelsea side, despite their aggressive play, could only muster a solitary shot on target in the first half – a Conor Gallagher attempt that was coolly handled by the Sheffield custodian Foderingham.

Sheffield’s Cameron Archer and James McAtee showed flashes of danger on the counter, but their efforts were stifled by a lack of possession, which languished at a mere 21%.

Pochettino, seeking to shake things up, tweaked his formation and shuffled the roles of Sterling and Palmer after the break. This strategic pivot paid dividends, breaking through Sheffield’s stubborn resistance.

The victory was a much-needed tonic for Chelsea, who had stumbled in their previous outings against Manchester United and Everton. Wilder, in his nascent second stint at Sheffield, lamented the inexperience of his side in the face of Chelsea’s quality.

This triumph propelled Chelsea to the 10th spot, leapfrogging London rivals Fulham and Brentford, while Sheffield United remained anchored at the bottom, continuing their struggle for survival.

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