- Slavia Prague vs Chelsea saw Maurizio Sarri start Eden Hazard from the bench who replaced Pedro just before the hour mark with the score still goalless
- Willian came close to breaking the deadlock from outside the box but his strike crashed off the woodwork
- Marcos Alonso headed goal four minutes from time helped Chelsea seal the vital win away from home
Slavia Prague suffered a 0-1 defeat to Chelsea in the first leg of their Europa League quarter-final clash on Thursday, April 11, at Sinobo Stadium.
The encounter saw Marcos Alonso net a late header in the 86th minute to seal the important win for Chelsea against Slavia Prague in quarter-final clash.
Willian, who came closest to scoring for Chelsea in the first-half, delivered a perfect cross for Alonso to head home.
In the early stage of the match, Chelsea had a larger percentage of ball possession against their host, but could not make it count.
Slavia Prague played a more compact game to stall any match plan the Maurizio Sarri's men tried to execute, but Willian watched in disbelief as his strike bounced off the woodwork in the 25th minute of the encounter.
And at the end of the first half the scores remained 0-0 as the home side held Chelsea from causing any damage.
In the second half, Chelsea upped their game as they went in search of an away goal, as Maurizio Sarri made his first substitution with Eden Hazard replacing Pedro in the 59th minute.
Willian had another effort to break the deadlock for Chelsea but his strike failed to connect.
At the other end, Peter Olayinka tried to bridge Chelsea defence after a beautiful combination with teammate at the edge of the box, but could not apply the final finish.
Moments later, Chelsea shot-stopper Kepa Arrizabalaga was spot on to deny Slavia Prague a decent chance from netting the opening goal of the match, the Spaniard saved Ibrahim Traore shot after dribbling his way through the Blues defence.
With 15 minutes left on the clock, Ross Barkley was subbed off for Ruben Loftus-Cheek as Chelsea continued the search of a goal.
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Finally, Alonso netted with four minutes to go and at the blast of the final whistle, the scoreboard read Slavia Prague 0-1 Chelsea.
The result sees Chelsea go into the return fixture on April 18, at Stamford Bridge in a commanding position.
Earlier, Legit.ng reported that Chelsea play maker Eden Hazard may not play any role in Thursday’s Europa League clash against Slavia Prague ahead of Sunday’s Premier League cracker with Liverpool.
According to Liverpool Echo, Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri is expected to make five or six changes to the Blues squad for tonight’s game away to Slavia Prague, in the first-leg of their Europa League quarter final.
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