Marcos Alonso may have been named Man of the Match by BT Sport, but it was Eden Hazard who was doing most of the talking during the post-match interview, not to mention during the match itself wherein he produced yet another outstanding individual display.
The players already knew the Spurs result heading into the game, which added to the pressure and “test of character” posed by a relentlessly positive and fearless AFC Bournemouth.
“We passed a test. We knew the result of Tottenham before the game and today we deserved to win.”
Hazard’s goal, which was Chelsea’s second, stood up as the eventual match-winner after Bournemouth made it interesting at the end of the first-half, though the result didn’t feel safe until Marcos Alonso’s picture-perfect free-kick halfway through the second half flew into the back of Artur Boruc’s net. Hazard was clearly impressed by strike — “what a goal!” he said as he handed over the Man of the March award — but he paid tribute to the efforts and the mentality of the whole team.
“It's more easy to control the game when you score first but at the end of the first half we were a little bit down. But in the second half we did well to control the game.”
“We have to believe in everything. Now is one step closer to the title and we have seven games left.”
Sitting on a seven-point lead with seven games left, Chelsea’s magic number (a combination of points won by the Blues or dropped by Spurs) is just 15.