Congratulations to Leicester City, then, for finally winning the FA Cup final after 137 years of waiting. Fifth time lucky! Commiserations to Chelsea, meanwhile, who have now lost two FA Cup finals on the bounce. Hey, there’s always the Champions League. In the meantime, David Hytner’s verdict from Wembley has landed, so you know what to do. Thanks for reading this MBM! Leicester City win first FA Cup after Youri Tielemans screamer sinks Chelsea
3.08 pm EDT15:08
Thomas Tuchel speaks to BT Sport. “I think we are just unlucky today. I don’t see why Leicester should win this game except for a shot in the top corner from out of nothing. I thought we controlled the counter-attacks excellent, I thought we controlled the strikers and midfield excellent, we did not allow one chance, one half-chance, nothing. We had maybe a sure goal with Azpilicueta only for someone to deflect it in front of him, we were a bit too hectic in decision-making, we had many situations.
In the second half we had total control, we concede a goal out of nothing, we had a big save from Schmeichel and a narrow decision for offside, so altogether it’s super-unlucky. It can happen in football. If it happens in a final it is not good, we are disappointed, but there is no need to be angry with anybody. We wanted it a bit too much, we were a bit hectic, our decisions were not so good as normal, but I am not angry at them. We deserved to score, and for me it is much more 1-0 for us than 1-0 for them, but this can happen in football and you accept it. Once you enter a final there is no guarantee.”
That possibly reads a bit less sporting than Tuchel’s actual tone suggested; it felt like he was making a point of praising his own players rather than trying to diminish anything Leicester did. Though he did get a bit abrupt when Des Kelly asked him whether this would have any effect on the Premier League game with Leicester on Tuesday, which suggests a little irritation bubbling away not so far from the surface.
2.43 pm EDT14:43
Brendan Rodgers speaks to the Beeb. “It’s an amazing feeling. I wasn’t aware before I came to Leicester that they hadn’t won the FA Cup. So to be able to give that to these supporters, plus Top and his family make this a special day. It’s a real collective effort at Leicester, from the board, players, staff and supporters. It’s an amazing day for the city. Youri’s goal was like an old-school FA Cup-winning goal, but also Kasper’s saves.
I thought we were the better team overall. We were super-aggressive and always a threat with the ball. Chelsea are an amazing team but I thought we deserved to win. It’s the FA Cup, and as a British coach, it means so much. I’m so proud, but happier for everyone else. A monumental performance and what a day for everyone involved with Leicester!”
Leicester’s goalscoring hero Youri Tielemans speaks to the BBC. “It feels really good! It’s amazing! I am really glad to score the goal that helped the team to win the game. It was a really tight game. To score in the final … What a goal that was! I am really happy for the team and the fans! The goal was really good! Today I got a text message saying I had to hit for the top corner … And I did it! It is really special to have the fans in today. I hope everyone was safe. And the fans watching it from home, I hope they are proud of us.
I am sure they are. It is emotional for Top [the nickname of Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha] and his family because they built this club towards glory. We will give everything to the men who built this club and its legacy. Something special started when they won the league, and we have just built it up and hopefully, we can continue. We have a very important game on Tuesday! We will enjoy and celebrate and think about Tuesday later on!”
2.34 pm EDT14:34
For a cup final that took quite a while to get going, that match threw up quite a few narratives. A goal to remember by Youri Tielemans; a couple of outstanding saves by the Jim Montgomery de nos jours, Kasper Schmeichel, from Ben Chilwell and Mason Mount; and that VAR drama at the end, Wes Morgan an inch or so away from own-goal heartbreak, the old boy making the final clearance as the whistle went.
What a game! One for Chelsea to forget, admittedly, but otherwise, it’s the stuff of instant Leicester legend. “In some ways, Leicester’s FA Cup triumph is even more impressive than their 2016 title,” suggests Kári Tulinius. “That they’ve managed to defy gravity since winning the league, stay as one of the top teams in England, and have added a major trophy to their collection, changes their story, from flukey winners to serial champions. What a team!”
2.29 pm EDT14:29
Chelsea sportingly waited to watch Leicester claim the cup for the first time in the club’s long history. A difficult moment for a team who played their part in a slow-developing final that eventually caught the imagination and delivered some genuine drama. No doubt they’ll channel this feeling into extra determination for the Champions League final, a negative turned positive, but for now, it’s heads down, and off they trudge.
2.26 pm EDT14:26
After giving a joyous Brendan Rodgers the bumps, Leicester come up and claim their medals. Then Kasper Schmeichel takes possession of the FA Cup, wanders over to Wes Morgan, and the pair hoist it into the air! Up goes the cup, down come the silver streamers, and Leicester’s long, long, long, long, long wait to win an FA Cup final is over!
Chelsea, to a man, are down on their haunches. Gutted. Who can blame them after the way VAR pulled the rug away so dramatically from under their feet. But they’ve had plenty of FA Cup success recently, and this is all about Leicester. The Foxes form a huge ring, into which Jamie Vardy launches himself with great abandon! Everyone jumping, the Leicester fans singing, Gary Lineker apologizing to Chelsea-supporting BBC viewers for getting carried away, Chelsea-supporting pundit Ashley Cole sad about the result but genuinely pleased for the presenter.
2.19 pm EDT14:19
Kasper Schmeichel, having raced towards the Leicester fans with the rest of the team, cavorting jubilantly, comes away to talk to the BBC. “I can’t begin to describe it … Wow, what a day … It’s amazing, it’s what dreams are made of … I’ve dreamed of this since I was a child … The performance, the grit, and determination … Everybody’s been sensational, the team behind the team.
When you do things properly, you have an eternal belief to what you can achieve … This is what we dreamt of, what we talked about for so many years … Youri … Wow! What a finish! I didn’t even dare to celebrate because there’s always going to be VAR … We’ll enjoy it today but tomorrow we’re training again … They’re a top-class side and will want revenge!”
2.15 pm EDT14:15
A huge beam plays across Brendan Rodgers’ face. He waves up at the club owner Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha, who will no doubt be thinking of his late father Vichai right now. On the BBC, Gary Lineker is certainly thinking of his, voice cracking as he remembers how his dad saw Leicester lose four finals during his lifetime, and hopes he’s somewhere watching this one from above.
2.13 pm EDT14:13
Leicester players and fans erupt in glee! Wes Morgan, so close to heartbreak, makes the final clearance of the match. A historic victory for the Foxes! They won the final in style, Youri Tielemans scoring a sensational winner, Kasper Schmeichel making a couple of huge late saves. There will no doubt be some controversy over the late VAR let-off, but take nothing away from Leicester, who were magnificent in that second half.
FULL TIME: Chelsea 0-1 Leicester City.
|May 15, 2021||4:08 pm||FA Cup||2021||90'|
|Stamford Bridge, Barrow, Great Barrow, Cheshire West and Chester, North West England, England, CH3 8EN, United Kingdom|