It was the final day of the 2018 Premier League season, and Chelsea were in Newcastle for their last attempt at picking up points to help secure Champions League qualification.

Just four days before, Huddersfield Town had brought an end to the Blues’ four game win streak, on their way to themselves escaping relegation from the Premier League.

Newcastle United were hoping to break a four-game losing streak that started after their 2-1 win v Arsenal mid-April. They were also looking to change their fortunes against today’s opposition. This was the third meeting between the sides this season, and Antonio Conte’s team had won the two previous encounters 3-1 in the league, and 3-0 in the FA Cup. […]

Ayodeji Itasanmi (Twitter: @aryhorblueblood) St. James’ Park/May 13, 2018 This is our last Premier League game of the season but it’s our penultimate match of the 2017/2018 season with the FA Cup final against Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United team still to come later this month. There’s not much riding on this match for either side […]

Conte reacted quickly to the goal, first bringing in Giroud for Zappacosta and then Hazard for Pedro a few minutes later.

The reinforcements helped spring the lock: four minutes after the Hazard sub, Azpilicueta zipped a low cross into the box. Zanka tried to intercept, but his clearance bounced off Marcos Alonso’s head and into the net for 1-1.

It was Alonso’s seventh league goal this season. He barely knew anything about it, it was a lucky goal, but Chelsea had flooded the penalty box with bodies. It was the kind of luck you make by being there for the opportunity when it comes.

Even as they equalized though, the news filtered in that Harry Kane had scored at Wembley to put Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 up v Newcastle United. As it stood, Chelsea were not getting past Spurs into the CL places. […]

Ayodeji Itasanmi (Twitter: @aryhorblueblood) Stamford Bridge/May 9, 2018   Anything short of a comfortable victory against the Terriers will render the hard work put in against Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool useless. With the victory over Liverpool on Sunday and Spurs losing to West Bromwich Albion on Saturday giving us an outside chance of qualifying for the […]

It was a cheery sunny afternoon at the Bridge, with a capacity crowd in attendance for Sunday’s late kick-off. Chelsea were playing Liverpool in the Premier League, with just three games left to keep their Champions League qualification hopes alive.

The Blues were experiencing a slight upturn in their fortunes, with three wins in their three games since a tough home defeat against Tottenham Hotspur.

Liverpool were flying in the Champions League, but suffering somewhat in the EPL. They had only two wins vs Crystal Palace (2-1 away) and Bournemouth (3-0) in their last five games. The other three results were draws with Everton (0-0 away), West Bromwich Albion (2-2 away) and Stoke City (0-0 at home).

Both teams made just one change to their line-ups from previous games. Marcos Alonso returned from suspension to replace Emerson on the left wing for Chelsea, and Nathaniel Clyne came in for Jordan Henderson for Liverpool. […]

Ayodeji Itasanmi (Twitter: @aryhorblueblood) Stamford Bridge/May 6, 2018 This is the most pivotal week of the season for Antonio Conte’s team as we hold on to the faintest of hope of qualifying for the world’s biggest club competition the UCL next season. The Liverpool team will be in high spirit after their trip to Rome […]