90+3min: FULL TIME!
90+2min: Holgate into the book for hacking down Pedro. James puts in a great cross from the free kick, but it’s cleared.
90min: Barkley showboats a bit in midfield, just to rub it in for the traveling support, who have stopped putting in the effort to boo him some time ago. 3 minutes added on.
86min: Armando Broja makes his Premier League debut as well, on for Giroud.
84min: Azpilicueta tries his luck from 25 yards. Pickford saves. Barkley takes the corner and aims for Gilmour at the top the box with a flat delivery. Gilmour goes for the spectacular first-time shot, but doesn’t make clean contact and it’s easily blocked by a defender. Chelsea retain possession.
82min: Zouma collects a yellow card for pulling back Richarlison after losing him on the turn.
81min: Gilmour presses and nicks the ball in the final third, finding Anjorin in the area in acres of space. He thinks he has time to take a touch and shoot, but he doesn’t at this level as Sidibe comes out of nowhere to slide in a tackle him cleanly.
78min: Pedro slips and gives away a free kick in a good crossing position for Everton. Digne curls it in, Chelsea half clear, then block Richarlison’s shot. Everton recycle possession and finds Sidibe wide right. He puts the ball across the six with two Everton players waiting, but Kepa’s down quickly and bravely to collect low, getting a kick on his hands for his troubles from Kean.
76min: Everton youngster Gordon comes on for Calvert-Lewin, who’s been mostly anonymous.
75min: Gilmour looking to push through the middle again, playing a 1-2 with Azpi. But Gilmour runs into Pedro while going for the return ball and the attack breaks down. At the other end, an aimless Everton long ball gives the ball back to Chelsea.
74min: Kepa out strongly to claim a cross, bowling over Zouma in the process. They’re both okay.
72min: Anjorin’s next bit of action is an audacious 35-yard effort to try to catch Pickford off his line. The crowd appreciates it, even if it goes well wide of the goal.
71min: Willian off for Tino Anjorin, making his Premier League debut. He immediately puts the pressure on Pickford, but he shepherds the ball out.
69min: Barkley tries to get in on the goalscoring party against his old team, as he twist and turns in the area. But his from a fairly tight angle is blocked and gathered by Pickford.
67min: Gilmour presses and wins the ball, then crosses for Giroud. Everton clear. Referee gives a talking-to to Rüdiger and Calvert-Lewin for some reason, behind the play.
66min: Everton have their first corner, which they play short to Sigursson. He drives the line and curls it in, which gives Kepa a bit of corner, but the ball had curled out and Chelsea have a goal kick.
62min: Gilmour already into the attack, making a great run into the area and found by Barkley. The pass back across is blocked for a corner, which Willian takes. Rüdiger wins the header the ball hits the back of another player and Everton can clear.
60min: Mount off for Reece James, who slots into central defensive midfield, pushing Gilmour a bit further forward alongside Barkley.
58min: Kean on for Everton, as Willian finds Pedro outside the top of the area from the corner. Pedro passes up the shot, but wins the foul just outside the right corner of the area. Barkley looks to curl it in, but goes for the shot instead. Easy save for Pickford.
57min: Chelsea letting Everton have the ball for a bit, then counter quickly through Willian. He drives the area then rolsl it across the Barkley. He dummies the ball and Pedro is free at the far post, but Pickford saves his shot for a corner.
54min: GOAL!!!! GIROUDDDD!!! Willian plays the corner short, then plays it in after getting the ball immediately back. Giroud gets ahead of Sigurdsson and pokes it into the back of the net. 4-0, CHELSEA!!
53min: Pedro unlucky to not make it four, after Mount gets Chelsea going through the middle. Chelsea have a corner, but Mount stays down holding his ankle. Seems okay to carry on.
51min: GOAL!!! WILLLIANNN!! Chelsea back in control, passing freely in midfield and the final third. Willian picks up the ball 20 yards out, and picks out the same corner as Mason Mount in the first half with a low, true shot. No chance Pickford. 3-0, CHELSEA!
48min: A few early midfield exchanges to start the half. Richarlison can’t get the better of Azpilicueta at one end; Pedro’s cross finds only Pickford’s hands at the other.
CHANGE: Walcott on for Bernard, who apparently picked up an injury in that final play in the first-half. Everton need some tactical improvement, too, and Walcott’s pace is always a concern.
HALF-TIME: Mount and Barkley combine to stop Bernard and that prompts the half-time whistle. Great half from Chelsea, who lead 2-0.
44min: Willian gifts the ball to Everton with a blind pass towards Zouma, but Chelsea stream back quickly to prevent any great danger from it. Chelsea again turning a bit sloppy.
42min: Rüdiger cleans up a miscued clearance from Zouma, who’s been a bit shaky so far today.
41min: Willian almost nicks the ball from Keane after Everton maintain possession for a bit. Would’ve been in 1-v-1.
38min: More great interplay up the left leads to a Pedro cross, which is blocked for a corner. Willian goes to take it, but Pickford claims well inside the six-yard box.
36min: Pedro twists and turns at the left corner of the penalty area, dinking a short cross towards Giroud on the far post. He looks to have the beating of Holgate, but can’t quite reach the ball. He’s claiming a penalty, but there was nothing egregious on replay.
35min: Chelsea build on the right, but Mount’s bullied off the ball. Giroud finds the loose ball and goes for a snapshot from the top of the box; saved well and no rebound.
33min: Mount swings in the free kick from the left, but it’s hit too hard and Pickford can claim it at the far post.
32min: Chelsea build on the left and Pedro finds Giroud in the area. But Giroud’s first-touch is uncharacteristically loose and Everton can clear. But Chelsea win it back quickly and push again, winning a foul just outside the corner of the penalty area.
31min: Bit more sloppiness from the home side before Rüdiger calms things down by shielding the ball out of play for a goal kick.
29min: Alonso turns the ball over in the defensive third, but Pedro tracks back quickly to help win the ball back. Slightly sloppy in the last few minutes from the Blues.
28min: Azpilicueta with one of his trademark crosses from deep, looking for Giroud. Pickford’s out well to claim it ahead of the Chelsea striker.
26min: Zouma tries to step through a challenge at midfield but loses the ball and Everton’s front two have a 2-v-1 on Rüdiger. Richarlison find Calvert-Lewin, leaving him with a simple finish, but somehow he doesn’t even hit the target. Massive letoff against a team who have not been in the game at all.
21min: GOALLL!!! PEDROO!! More great passing from Chelsea through the middle, Gilmour to Giroud to Barkley. His through ball is a thing of beauty, finding Pedro timing his run perfectly. He’s in 1-v-1 and makes no mistake. 2-0, CHELSEA!
19min: Another long ball over the top finds a speeding Willian, and this time he gets the ball ahead of Holgate. With no support, Willian goes for goal from a sharp angle and draws a good save from Pickford. Keane cleans up the rebound ahead of a slowly arriving Giroud.
17min: Willian takes on Holgate, 1-v-1, but ends up on the ground. Referee unmoved.
14min: GOALLL!!! MASON MOUNT!!! Chelsea pass it around for a while, then turn upfield through Gilmour and Mount. Mount plays wide to Pedro, who drives the area then plays infield back to Mount. He controls the ball, turns quickly, and finds the bottom corner of the net unerringly. 1-0, CHELSEA!
12min: Another counter from Chelsea leads to a foul, but Mount’s free kick leads only to a wayward Rüdiger header.
10min: Sloppy pass from Holgate gifts the ball to Giroud, but he delays his pass to Pedro then puts way too pace on it. Pedro can only weakly cross it back in, which is easily collected.
9min: Long throw from Everton is cleared by Barkley, but Everton retain possession.
7min: What a save from Pickford! Giroud flicks the ball to Willian on the right and he’s in behind the defense. Pedro, Mount making runs in the middle and Willian picks out the latter. He goes for a near-perfect flying volley, which somehow doesn’t end up in the back of net. So unlucky!
6min: Giroud gets an accidental elbow from Keane into the side of the head on the next 50-50, which is given as a drop ball to Chelsea, much to Everton’s chagrin.
5min: Barkley loses the ball in midfield, much to the delight of the traveling support.
2min: Chelsea with some sharp early passing, onto the front foot immediately.
KICK-OFF: Everton, in some salmon-coloured monstrosity; Chelsea in the usual blues. A hug from Lampard to Ancelotti, and we’re underway.
Chelsea have a fantastic opportunity to solidify our top-four position, with Spurs once again dropping points yesterday (1-1 draw against Burnley) and Manchester United playing against City later today. In fact, it’s Sheffield United and Wolverhampton Wanderers who are closest to Chelsea at this moment, both two points behind right now (and Sheffield with a match-in-hand).
Here we go!
Chelsea starting lineup (4-3-3):
Arrizabalaga | Alonso, Zouma, Rüdiger, Azpilicueta (c) | Barkley, Gilmour, Mount | Willian, Giroud, Pedro
Substitutes from: Caballero, Christensen, Tomori, James, Broja, Anjorin, Batshuayi
Everton starting lineup (4-4-2):
Pickford | Digne, Keane, Holgate, Sidibe | Bernard, Davies, André Gomes, Sigurdsson (c) | Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin
Substitutes from: Stekelenburg, Baines, Mina, Iwobi, Walcott, Kean, Gordon
Date / Time: Sunday, March 8, 2020, 14.00 GMT; 10am EDT; 7:30pm IST
Venue: Stamford Bridge, SW6
Referee: Kevin Friend (on pitch); Martin Atkinson (VAR)
On TV: Sky Sports Main Event (UK); NBCSN (USA); ??? (India); Canal+ Sport 2, SuperSport 3 (NGA); elsewhere
Streaming: Sky Go (UK); NBC Sports Live, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo (USA); Hotstar? (India); DStv Now (NGA)
Be excellent to each other, and party on, dudes!