Third time lucky for Chelsea

April 30, 2008

On a soggy night at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea finally prevailed against Liverpool in a Champions League semi-final after failures in 2005 and 2007.

Didier Drogba was immense on the muddy surface and bagged two lightning quick goals at the near post as the Londoners triumphed 3-2 after extra time and 4-3 on aggregate. 

Liverpool battled hard with Fernando Torres scoring yet again but ultimately Chelsea were worthy winners, even if they thought a chance had gone when Michael Essien’s strike was ruled out for offside…probably correctly.

After all the boardroom wrangling at Liverpool, it will be interesting to see what Rafa Benitez does next. Chelsea boss Avram Grant is on his way to Moscow to face Manchester United in the first all-English final, and as he sank to his knees at the end Chelsea fans finally saw the emotion they thought was lacking since Jose Mourinho’s departure.

The night, though, belonged to Frank Lampard, who slotted home an extra time penalty to make it 2-1 for Chelsea after Sami Hyypia’s careless foul on Michael Ballack just inside the box.

Days after the death of his mother, Lampard placed the spotkick perfectly and ran to the corner kissing his black armband and holding it to the sky. She would have been proud of you, Frank.


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I have just got back from the game – great atmosphere – I have to say that I question the decision to leave Ryan Babel on the bench – although Yossi did well for the goal he did not offer enough – Drogba on the other hand was a constant threat….I thought when Liverpool scored that they would go on and win it – I was wrong!

Posted by owen | Report as abusive

I’m a Liverpool fan and I just wanted to say congratulations to the whole Chelsea team and to Lampard in particular. He did his mother proud tonight. I hope you can win a European Cup for her, Frank.

Posted by Bryan Witcher | Report as abusive

What a match! And a wonderful moment for Lampard, especially after all the abuse he’s taken recently. It’s going to be a fascinating scene in Moscow…

Mark, what’s next for Liverpool? Is Rafa definitely staying?

Posted by Brian | Report as abusive

who knows Brian. he’s got to two Champions League finals with Liverpool, won one and lost one and now missed out on a chance of another to show his side’s true worth.
They’ve never looked like competing in the premier league under his reign so it may depend on what vacancies crop up and what happens between the warring owners. He wouldnt go back to stricken Valencia but Barca would tempt him

Posted by Mark | Report as abusive

Kudos to Chelsea, the better team won.
Chelsea for the double!!

Posted by Five Times | Report as abusive

If Liverpool had equalised 2-2 in extra time and the game had finished thus, would they have gone through on the away goals rule? Obviously this did not happen, but is it fair that the away side in the return leg has a potential 120 minutes to score ‘away’ goals as opposed to 90 minutes? Would it be fairer to scrap the away goals rule once extra time begins?

On the other hand you might say that playing at home in the second leg is already an advantage, so perhaps that evens it out.

Posted by Gonzalo | Report as abusive