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Watford

Ruben Loftus-Cheek is expected to be starting in Chelsea‘s XI which will take on Eintracht Frankfurt at Stamford Bridge tonight.

The England international midfielder could replace N’Golo Kante after the Frenchman picked up an injury against Watford last time out.

The Blues have a chance to book a place into the Europa League‘s final after getting a vital away draw in Germany earlier on Thursday.

Loftus-Cheek, speaking ahead of the clash, told journalists: “As Chelsea, we want to win trophies so this is a massive opportunity for us. We won’t relax,” 

“It will feel different for me to win a trophy this season because I have helped the team so much in the Europa League campaign.

“This is the best spell of my Chelsea career in terms of games and goals.”

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LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 02: Gonzalo Higuain of Chelsea celebrates after scoring his team's first goal during the Premier League match between Chelsea FC and Huddersfield Town at Stamford Bridge on February 2, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

Gonzalo Higuain helped Chelsea yesterday to defeat Watford and secure a place in the next Champions League.

Speaking to BBC, Blues manager Maurizio Sarri has urged the club to confirm the Argentina international, who arrived at Stamford Bridge on loan from Juventus, also next season.

If he’s staying then we can do very well in the next season” Sarri said “I don’t know about Higuain’s future, you have to ask the club. But for a striker it is not easy to play here, when you’re used to playing in Spain and Italy. It’s not easy to adapt to this competition because it’s different physically.”

Since his arrival in January, Higuain has scored 5 goals in 13 Premier League‘s appeareances.

Ruben Loftus-Cheek, David Luiz and Gonzalo Higuain score as Chelsea earn a vital win to move up above Tottenham Hotspur and go third on the Premier League table.

The Blues produced a brilliant second-half getting an early lead and doubling the score with the Brazilian defender in the 51st minute.

Maurizio Sarri suffered an injury blow earlier in the first period, when N’Golo Kante was limped off the pitch and was replaced by Loftus-Cheek, who headed home securing the lead.

Chelsea take control of the top four race moving one point ahead of Spurs and five points clear of fifth-placed Arsenal.

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WATFORD – Foster, Femenia, Mariappa, Cathcart, Holebas, Doucoure, Hughes, Chalobah, Pereyra, Deulofeu, Deeney

Substitutes: Gomes, Janmaat, Cleverley, Success, Masina, Gray, Kabasele

Manager: Javi Garcia

CHELSEA – Kepa, Azpilicueta, Luiz, Christensen, Alonso, Kante, Jorginho, Kovacic, Hazard, Higuain, Pedro

Substitutes: Caballero, Barkley, Loftus-Cheek, Giroud, Zappacosta, Willian, Cahill

Manager: Maurizio Sarri

Venue: Stamford Bridge

Kick-Off: 2PM BST

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Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri has confirmed his side “have two problems” as both Pedro and Callum Hudson-Odoi are still a doubt ahead of Sunday’s clash against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.

The Italian boss, on the other hand, says his decision to not play Alvaro Morata in Blues’ last game at Vicarage Road was “a tactical choice”.

 

“We have two problems, the first is more serious with Pedro” said Sarri.

“He has an injury in his hamstring and I think that he will have to rest for about 10 days. The second problem is Odoi, it’s not very serious but I don’t know if he will be able to play in the next match”.

On Morata: “Alvaro now is going very well, he is fit to play. It was only a tactical choice [to not play him against Watford]”.

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Chelsea stiker Willian recognises the Blues gained three massive points last night vs Watford: 

It was very difficult,” Willian told Chelsea official website,  “In the Premier League there are no easy games, every match is tough to play, but we got the three points and we played very well. We had a lot of possession and we created a lot of chances but the Premier League is like this, until the end you have to fight, and now we have to continue.”

The Brazilian was very unlucky at Vicarage Road as he hit the post twice, but he knows the most important thing is to keep winning games:  “I think I was unlucky in the first half when I went one against one with the keeper and hit the post,” Willian went on. “We had control of the game, we scored to make it 1-0 but then we conceded a goal. We went out for the second half with the same mentality, scored a goal and tried to create some chances. We were unlucky again, I hit the post twice, but like I said we have to continue in the same way now, we cannot go up and down anymore.”

Willian hit the posts, Eden Hazard scored twice and he became the 10th Chelsea’s player to score 100 goals for the club. “I’m happy for him,” Willian  concluded. “I’m happy because he helped us to win and happy he has scored 101 goals for Chelsea, so I hope there’s more to come from him. Now we have to think about Crystal Palace.”

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Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri believes Eden Hazard can be compared to Juventus’ Cristiano Ronaldo or Barcelona’s Leo Messi as the Belgian star ‘is a very great plater”.

Hazard, who scored a brace in the Blues’ away victory against Watford tonight, also marked his 100th goal (the opener in Chelsea’s 1-2 win) in all competitions with the Premier League giants.

And Sarri was pleased to remark this record: “Of course he is very important for us, but Messi is very important for Barcelona, Cristiano Ronaldo is very important for Juventus. He is a very great player”.

“He is able to play in every position. He is playing like a false number nine. He is very able to play in that position, today he scored two goals and I think he made two or three very good assists.

He is very able to come to play with the team-mates, he is able to make space for team-mates, he is very able in that position, but I think that he can play very well in every position.”

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Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri has confirmed he was pleased after his side came back to winning ways against Watford at Vicarage Road tonight.

The Blues were able to beat the Hornets away from home after suffering a disappointing defeat to Leicester City at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

Sarri, speaking at a press conference, told journalists: “I think against Leicester the mentality was good and I think against Leicester we played the best performance of the season in the first half.

Wrong was the reaction, the reaction to the negative situation, but it can happen. Today it was very well in approach, the determination and application was very good for 90 minutes in continuity.

“So maybe we played in quality against Leicester better but we played today better in application so the result is only the consequence.”

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Chelsea striker Callum Hudson-Odoi was brought off with 5 minutes left to go despite he came off the bench himself in the first half, due to Pedro Rodriguez‘s injury.

When asked to explain the reason behind his decision to substitute the 18-year-old, Blues’ manager Maurizio Sarri told journalists: “He played for the first time this season in the Premier League, he played for 55 minutes very well.

He had a little injury with his hamstring one week ago and ten minutes to go he had pain in the same point. So we preferred to change.

“I can understand [the fans were not happy], but there wasn’t another solution, it was too dangerous.”

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With tonight’s brace Eden Hazard reached the 100th and 101st goal for Chelsea.

The Belgian, who often claimed that his dream is to play in Real Madrid and never guaranteed a Chelsea stay for the future, celebrated this accomplishment

“Scoring 101 goals with this amazing club is something I will never forget, but now I think the fans, the staff, myself, the players, we want more.

 “I want to score more for this club and then try to be a legend like Lampard, Terry, Drogba, I try to do my best. But when we are winning we can enjoy a lot.”

Hazard also said the result was a good response from Chelsea after losing at home to Leicester at the weekend.

“We showed great character against Manchester City after losing to Wolves and today we did the same. We lost three days ago against Leicester and we needed to respond on the pitch and we did well.”

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