Valencia v Chelsea: Champions League – live! – The Guardian, Google News

(min 2:Pulisic dances in from the left and scoops a pass wide right for James, who fizzes a low cross-cum shot into Cillessen’s hands at the near post.

90 min 1:To be fair, the VAR decision for the Pulisic goal took the best part of three minutes.

88 min:“Why do I have the feeling that this match will not end in a draw? ”wonders Mary Waltz, in the rhetorical style.

87 min:Gabriel is booked for standing on Mount’s foot . He doesn’t bother complaining.

86 min:Gameiro is sniffing around again, but Christensen is positioned perfectly to block Gaya’s cross from the left and stop it getting to the striker.

85 min:Wass surely didn’t mean to score with that ball in from the right. But Kepa might think he could have dealt with it better. Meanwhile,Valenciaare looking for the winner too. Gameiro has a wild lash at a deep right-wing cross, but can’t connect.

83 min:Chelsea try to bounce back immediately for the second time this evening, and nearly manage it! The ball’s swung into theValenciabox, and Zouma’s header is cleared off the line!

GOAL! Valencia 2-2 Chelsea (Wass 82)

A surreal goal pegsChelseaback! Wass chases a pass down the right and crosses deep. Kepa opts not to interfere … and watches in horror as the ball curls over his head, crashes off the left-hand post, and into the top corner! Shades of Paul Konchesky in the 2006 FA Cup final, albeit from the other wing. And apologies to Daniel Wass for comparing him to Paul Konchesky.

Valencia’s Daniel Wass (not pictured) scores their second goal.
All eyes are on the ball as it sails into the Chelsea net. Photograph: Sergio Pérez / Reuters


81 min:Valencia shuttle the ball in from the right wing. Suddenly Parejo is in space, just inside theChelseabox. He slams goalwards, only to be denied by the frame of Azpilicueta, throwing himself horizontally in the John Terry style.

80 min:Mason Mount comes on for Willian.

79 min:Kepa is booked for taking his sweet time over a goal kick.

75 min: (Another) ************************************ (Valencia) corner. Parejo clips it in from the right. Garay wins a header but that’s an easy claim for Kepa. The Mestalla is pretty quiet right now.

74 min:Before the free kick can be taken,Valenciareplace Torres with Coquelin. The set piece eventually proves a complete non-event, despite the hosts loading the Chelsea box.

72 min:Emerson comes on for Jorginho.

70 min:It looks as though Jaume Costa injured himself when taking that shot just before his substitution. He’s currently having his thigh Saran Wrapped, in the thoroughly modern style.

66 min:A bit of pinball in theChelseaarea. Costa has a batter from a position to t he right of the D, but it’s off target. How on earth have only three goals been scored here tonight?!

65 min:Valenciamiss!After a long period of confusion – has the ref given this or not? – Parejo steps up to take. He slams his penalty towards the bottom left … but Kepa sticks a strong arm up and out to turn it around the post! That’s a great instinctive save! Nothing comes of the resulting corner.

Kepa Arrizabalaga of Chelsea saves a penalty from Daniel Parejo of Valencia.

Kepa’s hand keeps Chelsea’s noses in front. Photograph: Darren Walsh / Chelsea FC via Getty Images


63 min: Penalty for Valencia !A ball is slipped down the inside-left channel. Gaya gets in ahead of Jorginho, who brings his opponent down in a tangle of legs.

(min:Kante tears down the right and whips in low at pace. Pulisic attempts a spectacular volley, but doesn’t quite connect.


59 min:Incidentally, the Pulisic goal was officially scored on 50 minutes, even though it wasn’t awarded until the 53 rd. I didn’t get the memo, but then VAR is making fools of us all.

54 min:Valenciaare fuming. They’re claiming that Zouma fouled Gabriel when Kante swung the cross in. But neither the referee nor VAR was interested in that.

GOAL! Valencia 1-2 Chelsea (Pulisic 53)

… he’s onside by one of your VAR armpit hairs! Garay the man this time who will be ruing his decision to shun the Veet.

Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic is congratulated by teammates Cesar Azpilicueta, Michy Batshuayi and Jorginho.
Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic is congratulated by teammates Cesar Azpilicueta, Michy Batshuayi and Jorginho. Photograph: Andrew Boyers / Action Images via Reuters


52 min:Mind you, another angle is less than conclusive. And …

51 min:They’re taking their sweet time over this.

50 min:Chelseascore! Or get the ball in the net anyway. The ball’s swung into the area from the right. Zouma rises highest and heads down for Pulisic, who prods home from six yards. But the flag’s up for offside. This’ll be going to VAR, and it looks as though Pulisic is clearly offside. Still, let’s see.

Christian Pulisic (second left) prods the ball home to give Chelsea the lead.
Christian Pulisic (second left) prods the ball home to give Chelsea the lead. Photograph: Darren Walsh / Chelsea FC via Getty Images


48 min:The free kick’s sent wide right to Torres, who immediately runs into trouble.Chelseabreak, James zipping down the right. He’s clattered by Rodrigo, and now it’s Chelsea’s turn to have a free kick. They line up on the edge of the box.

47 min:Valenciaping it around for a bit. Kante gets fed up and clips Parejo on the heel. A free kick but not the booking the hosts were after.

We’re off again!The hosts get the second half underway. Michy Batshuayi replaces the stricken Tammy Abraham.

Half-time news.Poor Abraham couldn’t make it back to the dressing room under his own steam. They had to fetch a stretcher. Terrible luck for a player who has really blossomed this season. Hopefully that’s a bang on the hip, an impact injury rather than any internal concern.

Chelsea’s Tammy Abraham receives medical attention after sustaining an injury.
Tammy Abraham looks pained as he lays on the stretcher. Photograph: Andrew Boyers / Action Images via Reuters

Updated (at 2.) PM EST

HALF TIME: Valencia 1-1 Chelsea

That’s the end of a highly entertaining first half. Chelsea were the better team for most of it, thoughValenciaslowly came into the game as it developed. Both sides will feel they’ve let some chances pass them by. Chelsea will be pleased with their performance, although worried about Tammy Abraham, who landed very awkwardly on Garay’s foot as the pair fell, and looked in real agony as he made his way back to the dressing room. God speed. ************

45 min 3:Actually it looks as though Abraham has taken a knock to his hip, or his stomach. He’s holding his side and grimacing hard. The poor chap looks in an awful lot of pain. He tries to limp off with the assistance of the physio, but shouts in agony as he makes his way down the touchline. We’ll not be seeing him in the second half.

45 min 2:Abraham and Garay fell awkwardly in a tangle, and it looks like the big defender landed accidentally on the striker’s leg. Abraham is rolling around in a lot of pain.

45 min 1:In the first of two added minutes, Chelsea win a corner down the right. Willian takes, and Abraham really should plant a header on target from ten yards, but under pressure from Garay, allows the ball to skim off the top of his head.

45 min:… Kovacic has another crack at goal! This time he does try a curler towards the top right, but it’s always going wide. London buses, eh.

44 min:Kovacic, having waited so long for his first Chelsea goal, nearly gets a second in three minutes ! Pulisic dribbles hard towards theValenciabox. He draws two white shirts and lays off to Kovacic on his left. Kovacic should curl towards the far corner, but instead goes for the near post. Cillessen turns it out for a corner. From which …

43 min:It’s been a great game. A fair chance we’ve not seen the end of the scoring, either. This is NewChelsea, after all.

GOAL! Valencia 1-1 Chelsea (Kovacic 41)

What a reaction by Chelsea!Valenciaonly half-clear a left-wing cross. The ball drops to Kovacic, just to the left of the D, with his back to goal. He takes a touch, turns, and fires a heatseeker into the bottom left! It’s his first goal for Chelsea! And what a time to get it.

Mateo Kovacic fires the ball home to get Chelsea back on level terms.
Mateo Kovacic fires the ball home to get Chelsea back on level terms. Photograph: Darren Walsh / Chelsea FC via Getty Images


GOAL! Valencia 1-0 Chelsea (Soler 40)

This was worryingly simple forValencia. A long goal kick, and suddenly Rodrigo is in space down the right. He crosses for Soler, who shoots messily straight at Kepa from the penalty spot. Kepa gets a hand on the powerful shot, but can’t keep it out, palming it into the bottom left.

Carlos Soler of Valencia scores his team’s first goal.
Carlos Soler of Valencia scores his team’s first goal. Photograph: TF-Images / Getty Images

Valencia’s Carlos Soler celebrates after opening the scoring.
Soler celebrates his goal. Photograph: Sergio Pérez / Reuters


37 min:Chances at either end! Kepa plays a piss-poor goal kick straight to Torres, who dribbles back into the Chelsea box from the right. Torres freezes, neither shooting nor crossing, then falls over.Chelseago up the other end, Willian and James one-twoing down the right. James cuts back for Kante, free on the penalty spot. He leans back and blazes over. What an opportunity!

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