Despite Marcos Alonso’s well-taken goal, we had to settle for a point in a home game we dominated against Leicester, but the scorer believes that outcome was the result of a draining week at the end of a long, hard season for the Blues.
We were in near total control of the match for 90 minutes at Stamford Bridge, but had to come from behind for the draw after conceding early to James Maddison’s shot from outside the box.
Alonso drew us level with a fine volley and we had chances to take the lead in both halves, but for all our possession were unable to find the second goal we needed to leave with all three points.
While the Spaniard feels we deserved more from the game, he admits the sheer number of fixtures he and his team-mates have played this season, as well as Saturday’s FA Cup final defeat after 120 minutes of intense action and a penalty shoot-out, likely played a part in Thursday’s outcome.
‘I think we had enough chances, but it was a difficult one to play after a tough defeat in the FA Cup final, after so many games this season and not having much left to play for,’ said Alonso, with Chelsea already guaranteed a top-four finish and Champions League qualification going into the match against Leicester.
‘I think the final was definitely in the body. It was just a few days ago and we’ve had so many games and are arriving at the end a bit fatigued, tired mentally, and we could just get one point this time.
‘I don’t know how many games we’ve played, but I think we must have played more games than any team in the world this season, in a lot of competitions, and we are arriving at the end now so it’s getting tough. We were a bit tired physically and mentally.
‘It was a tough one to play but I think we fought until the end. They were close at the back defending and it wasn’t easy to find space, but we did our best. Still I think we dominated, we controlled the game, we had the chances, we just needed a few more chances and the second goal.’
While we didn’t manage to take the win our dominance deserved, we had Alonso’s goal to thank for the point, as he sweetly volleyed past Leicester goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel after meeting Reece James’ perfectly-weighted pass at the back post.
That left the 31-year-old pleased to have got on the scoresheet even if it wasn’t the end result he wanted, although he is still eager to finish the season on a high in our last match, also at the Bridge, against Watford on Sunday.
‘Reece is a great player and I am grateful for the assist. When they put the ball to the left I always try to be there, I arrived at the last moment and put it at the near post. It was a perfect ball from Reece and hopefully there are more to come in the next game or the next season.
‘I am happy to score but disappointed not to get the three points. But it is what it is, we take the point, we move on, there is one more to go and then we will rest a bit.
‘We always go to go out to play and get the win and we will do that again in the last game of the season to leave a good taste at the end. We will try to play a good game and celebrate here with the fans before we go for the summer.’