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. […]

It was matchday 15 of the 2017 season. Ex-Chelsea manager Rafa Benitez and Newcastle United were in London for the first league game of the weekend, against his former club.

November had turned to December, and as Chelsea’s players returned from injury, and Antonio Conte settled on his favoured shape and starting line-up, his team’s defensive inconsistencies were fading into memory.

Newcastle’s recent form was relatively similar to that of the last visitors to Stamford Bridge, Swansea City. They had four losses and one draw from their last five games – but they sat twelfth, much higher up the league table than the eighteenth placed Welsh side.

Chelsea were in third, with four wins and one draw from their last five league games. They had a chance today to draw level on points with second placed Manchester United – if they could take all three points today. […]