Youri Tielemans scored one of the greatest FA Cup Final goals to ensure Leicester won the competition for the first time in their history against Chelsea at Wembley
Youri Tielemans’ goal for the ages fittingly secured Leicester City’s first ever FA Cup success at Wembley as VAR had the final say.
The Belgian’s second-half strike from at least 25 yards flew past Kepa Arrizabalaga in the Chelsea goal and sent the Foxes fans into raptures.
The home of football welcomed back fans for the second time this season and saw one of the competition’s finest goals.
Brendan Rodgers has led Leicester superbly and now has a trophy to legitimise his sensational work at the King Power Stadium.
Thomas Tuchel will be left wondering what might’ve been after his Blues side came up short in the capital. Neither side registered a shot on target in the first-half but the game began to open up in the second 45.
Kasper Schmeichel was called upon to make big saves from former team-mate Ben Chilwell and then Mason Mount as Chelsea sought an equaliser.
The Blues thought they got level with a minute left when Wes Morgan put through his own net only for Chilwell to be given offside upon review.
The contrasting emotions said it all as Leicester, deservedly, enjoy their moment in the sun despite heading into the match as an underdog.
Here a five talking points from Wembley.
1. Foxes crash the party
Not a ‘top six’ side in the historical or financial sense, but in every other way they are one of the big boys.
Leicester’s league form over the past few years has been hugely impressive and they could well be in the Champions League next term.
Now though they have some silverware to show for their immense recent progress. Rodgers has got the most out of this young side with their recruitment also key to their success.
Leicester have become just the second team outside the ‘top six’ in the past 13 years to win the FA Cup and soon enough they may well have to be recognised as a genuine force in English football.
2. Tielemans’ Wembley wonderstrike
If ever a strike deserved to win a game it was the Belgian’s.
Leicester’s dynamic central midfielder was tipped for big things when he was a teenager at Anderlecht – he certainly delivered on that promise.
Ever since he arrived in England people have said Tielemans was capable of playing at the highest level suggesting that perhaps the Foxes were lucky to have a player of his calibre.
Maybe they are, maybe they aren’t. Tonight though no one who follows Leicester could care. Tielemans was the best player on the pitch in the capital and fittingly he settled the game.
3. Chelsea feeling the blues
No one can say Tuchel hasn’t had the plaudits he deserved since arriving in England.
He’s taken an inconsistent Chelsea side to within 90 minutes of European glory and may well deliver a top four finish.
If you were to try and pick faults in his team since his arrival though you would perhaps say they can be a little bit negative.
Chelsea’s defensive record has been phenomenal which has allowed them to win games by the odd goal.
Against Leicester though, a team content to soak up pressure and not leave space in behind, the Blues did look a little bereft of ideas.
4. Vardy makes history
The Leicester forward, one of the greatest rags to riches stories of the modern era, was again being praised for the way he has risen up the football ladder.
So often his past with Stocksbridge Park Steels in referenced and it was with them that Vardy played in the very first FA Cup qualifying round all those years ago .
His appearance in the final means he became the first player in history to play in every round of the competition.
At 34 Vardy may not be playing as regularly as he once did, but he remains one of Rodgers’ best and unique weapons.
5. Time up for Abraham?
Tammy Abraham’s constant omission from Chelsea’s matchday squads has been well documented. Since Tuchel arrived he has rarely used the striker despite him topping the club’s goal scoring charts.
When a player is left out of a final though it seems to hit home more than it does in a league game. Managers can often tweak things depending on their opponents or try and utilise their squad depth on a week-to-week basis.
Today though Abraham was again left out of the Chelsea squad which could well spell the end for the Englishman.
The Blues have two league games left as well as the Champions League Final, but don’t be surprised if you don’t see Abraham.