Analysis

The Debrief: Chelsea meet stubborn Leicester resistance in Cup final of tight margins

In an FA Cup final of very fine margins, the Blues were not able to make the most of the few openings that fell our way…

Chelsea dominated possession, with a 63.9 per cent share, and territory, but met stubborn Leicester resistance.

Of our 13 attempts on goal, six were blocked by a Foxes defender and seven were struck from outside the box. Three did test Kasper Schmeichel, who pulled off an especially outstanding save to deny Mason Mount an equaliser.

If you had said to Thomas Tuchel beforehand Leicester would only have one shot on target - and that from 25 yards - he probably would have taken it. Alas, Youri Tielemans’ strike was of the highest order.

After the goal, we had 85 per cent of the possession and completed 194 passes to Leicester’s 14 as we sought a way back into the game. Breaking down their deep defensive block proved beyond us, with the Foxes’ central defenders Wesley Fofana and Caglar Soyuncu registering 10 interceptions and 11 clearances between them.

Only one of our 10 corners found a player in blue, with Leicester coming out on top of 24 of the 37 aerial duels contested in the game. They were content to concede possession out wide, let us cross and then dominate aerially.

Our subs did help inject energy. Ben Chilwell hit the post and was involved in the tightest of VAR calls that denied us an equaliser, while Christian Pulisic completed all 13 of his passes, and his two successful take-ons were bettered only by N’Golo Kante, who made three.

We are the first team to lose consecutive FA Cup finals since Newcastle in 1998 and 1999, with Leicester becoming the 44th different team to win the competition.

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