Chelsea advanced to the League Cup final with a 1-0 win at Tottenham on Wednesday, thanks to Antonio Rudiger’s goal and three VAR decisions.
Rudiger’s first-half header ensured Chelsea pressed home the advantage they had earned with a 2-0 win in the first leg last week.
Thomas Tuchel’s team also had VAR official Mike Dean on their side as Tottenham were given two penalties by Andre Marriner, only for reviews to overturn both, while Harry Kane saw a goal disallowed for offside.
Chelsea will play Liverpool or Arsenal in the final at Wembley on February 27.
Liverpool host the coronavirus-delayed first leg of their semi-final against the Gunners on Thursday.
It is Chelsea’s first League Cup final appearance since 2019 as they aim to win the competition for the first time since 2015.
Tuchel has now taken Chelsea to three finals since taking over from Frank Lampard in January 2020.
They lost to Leicester in the FA Cup final before beating Manchester City to win the Champions League.
Securing a Wembley berth was the ideal preparation for Chelsea’s crucial date with Premier League leaders City on Saturday.
Tottenham have not won a major trophy since lifting the League Cup in 2008 and their options for ending that drought this season are dwindling.
Antonio Conte had conceded it would be hard to overturn the deficit against a team of Chelsea’s quality.
And the Tottenham manager’s pessimism proved well-founded as Chelsea quickly put a stranglehold on the tie in north London.
Romelu Lukaku almost bagged an early goal when the Chelsea striker barged past Ben Davies for a strike that was saved by Pierluigi Gollini, with the rebound off Japhet Tanganga drifting just wide.
Tottenham’s bid to become just the second team to reach the League Cup final after losing the first leg by more than one goal was shattered in the 18th minute.
- RELATED: Chelsea suffer £145.6 million loss despite Champions League win
- RELATED: Chelsea women complete treble after winning FA Cup
– VAR drama –
Gollini was a surprise starter for Tottenham instead of Hugo Lloris, a Conte gamble that backfired as the keeper was at fault for Chelsea’s opener.
It was a shambolic goal to concede as Gollini came off his line in a failed attempt to punch clear from Mason Mount’s inswinging corner, allowing the unmarked Rudiger to guide his header into the top corner via the underside of the bar.
Rudiger had already scored in Chelsea’s Premier League win at Tottenham this term and once again the German defender’s aggression was too much for the north Londoners to handle.
Callum Hudson-Odoi had a chance to double Chelsea’s lead with a low shot from inside the area, but this time Gollini was equal to the threat.
Chelsea were dominating possession but Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg almost grabbed a lifeline for Tottenham when his deflected effort flashed just wide.
Tottenham thought they had won a penalty when Rudiger sent Hojbjerg tumbling with a sliding tackle on the Dane, but VAR changed Marriner’s decision to a free-kick as the tackle was clearly made outside the area.
Giovani Lo Celso wasted the set-piece and Tottenham were booed off at half-time as their Wembley hopes faded.
Marriner’s poor decisions were only adding to Tottenham’s frustration and the referee was forced to deny the hosts another penalty in the second half.
Kane’s pass sent Lucas Moura through on goal, but Chelsea keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga made a well-timed block with his legs and, after Marriner errantly pointed to the spot, VAR intervened to change the decision.
Kepa made another important save moments later, leaping to his left to claw away Emerson Royal’s header.
Incredibly, Tottenham endured a third VAR reversal when Kane swept his shot into the far corner in the 63rd minute, only for the review to show he was inches offside.
Health benefits of Lime
Tinubu donates N50 million to victims of the Zamfara attacks
Police arrest man outside president’s office for growing marijuana in South Africa
College of Education, Polytechnics begin indefinite strike in Benue
Prince Andrew of UK stripped of military roles, use of HRH title
DJ Cuppy says Dangote is the richest black man, not Kanye West
Ways to take care of your fingernails
Veteran singer Dayo Kujore burial date revealed
INEC demands all candidates declare their bank assets in the 2023 elections
Davido and Wizkid spotted hugging each other in a Lagos nightclub
#JusticeforHanifa: Ganduje promises to seek justice for murdered 5-year-old schoolgirl
Lagos state appoints new police commissioner
2023: Gombe legislators deny support for Yahaya Bello
Student slits 11-year-throat old’s for refusing to run errands in Borno
Obi Cubana gifts Tunde Ednut N5m and six cows for birthday
AMCON takes control of IBEDC due to insolvency
Entertainment5 days ago
Toyin Abraham celebrates husband’s birthday with special performance by Timi Dakolo
News3 days ago
Domestic worker runs with N13.9 million in cash and jewelry in Lagos after a week of resumption
Sports4 days ago
Ghana knocked out of AFCON after 3-2 loss to Comoros
Business5 days ago
FG intends to build additional 2,000 affordable homes
News5 days ago
Dismissed soldier, other sentenced to death by hanging for robbery
News5 days ago
[UPDATED]: Four people dead, 12 injured in Lagos-Ibadan Expressway auto crash
News3 days ago
At least two people killed, 22 injured in Pakistan bomb blast
News4 days ago
Judge tells DSS to allow Nnamdi Kanu change his clothes