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Chelsea U18 reach FA Youth Cup quarterfinals after hard-fought 2-1 win over Crystal Palace

The Chelsea Cup!

Crystal Palace U18 v Chelsea U18: FA Youth Cup 5th Round Photo by Chris Lee - Chelsea FC/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Twenty-four hours after Chelsea reached the fifth round of the FA Cup, the U18s followed suit by winning in their fifth round match and reaching the quarterfinals of the FA Youth Cup!

It wasn’t quite as dominant of a performance from the youth at Selhurst Park as it had been by the men’s team at Villa Park, but Hassan Sulaiman’s charges got the job done in the end.

(Like the men’s team, the under-18s have not had the best luck in recent years in this competition. We’ve reached just one final since 2018, and lost in the fourth round last year.

It were the home side who had the better of the play in the first half, with Max Merrick, recently getting named as the third goalkeeper in our League Cup semifinal first leg at Middlesbrough, needing to come up with a couple huge stops. His counterpart in the other goal wasn’t exactly bored either, but Palace were certainly the more disappointed side to be heading into halftime scoreless.

And that was doubly true in the second half, as Chelsea came with much more purpose from the break, generating multiple excellent opportunities before Jimmy-Jay Morgan finally broke the deadlock just past the hour mark. Tyrique George quickly followed that up with a typical banger from distance.

Palace did make things interesting in the final few minutes, but we would hang on (and be made to pay for Morgan missing the empty net for what would’ve been a game-deciding brace).

Still, survive and advance is the name of the game in any Cup competition.

Chelsea will face Millwall, away, in the quarterfinals, which could prove a spicy occasion even if a youth football setting.

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