Reaction: Digging deep

The winning goalscorer Cesc Fabregas and captain Gary Cahill played important parts at either end of the pitch against Swansea yesterday to keep us in the race for a top four spot.

With Liverpool having drawn earlier in the day and Tottenham not in action until tomorrow night, the onus was on the Blues to secure a victory in Wales, and we did just that through Fabregas’s fine early finish.

Although it was far from our most fluid performance, we dug deep to grind out another precious three points and keep in touch with those teams above us. The matchwinner offered his analysis of the game afterwards.

‘We played well, we started well,’ Fabregas said. ‘We created chances and had control of the game and possession of the ball. I think we were quite comfortable, but in the last five or 10 minutes of the first half we struggled a little bit, but then we came back in to it.

‘It was a little bit of the same in the second half. In the last few minutes we should have controlled the situation a little bit better, but these teams are fighting to avoiding relegation, so we know every game is a final for everyone.’

Cahill agreed with the Spaniard when it came to the manner in which we picked up a third consecutive league victory, all on the road and all with the captain at the heart of our defence.

‘It was tough,’ he said. ‘They need results and they pushed hard at the end.

‘They gambled, put a lot of men forward and made it difficult for us at the end. We needed the win, so a good performance and a good win. It was not always pretty but we dug in and got the result.

‘It looked very difficult to get in the top four a few weeks ago, but let’s see,’ Cahill added.

‘It puts a little bit of pressure on. I’m sure they are used to it, but we have done our job, and all we can do is try and win every single game from now until the end of the season and see where that takes us.’

We have three Premier League matches remaining with home fixtures against Liverpool and Huddersfield up next, before a trip to Newcastle on the final day.

‘We have an opportunity, and as I said every game now becomes a final,’ Fabregas stressed.

‘We have to show our pride, and show we really want to make it happen and put pressure on them. The bad thing is it’s not up to us, but we have to be right behind putting pressure on because anything can happen, and we have to be there if it does.’

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