Giroud scores four as Chelsea sink Sevilla

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Olivier Giroud was making only his second Chelsea start of the season

Olivier Giroud scored all four goals in a comprehensive Chelsea victory over Sevilla that ensures the Blues take top spot in Champions League Group E.

The Frenchman scored early in each half with two delightful finishes after being fed by clever passes from Kai Havertz and Matteo Kovacic respectively.

He completed the treble with a flicked near-post header, then converted a penalty after he was bundled over in the box.

Already assured of qualification for the last 16, Chelsea made nine changes to the team that drew 0-0 with Tottenham in the Premier League on Sunday.

Both Havertz and Christian Pulisic made their first Blues starts since October following illness and injury, while 19-year-old midfielder Billy Gilmour came off the bench for his first appearance of the season.

Sevilla, also sure of their place in the knockout stages, were without a number of first-choice players and were forced to give a debut to goalkeeper Alfonso Pastor after Tomas Vaclik was injured in the warm-up.

There was little the 20-year-old could do about the goals and his saves ensured Chelsea’s winning margin was not greater.

Giroud makes his point – again

Giroud had made only one previous start for Chelsea this season, in the EFL Cup defeat by Tottenham, but this haul came after he scored a stoppage-time winner as a substitute against Rennes last week.

His path to regular Premier League football is blocked by Timo Werner and Tammy Abraham, but he could do no more to take the opportunity presented to him in southern Spain.

The former Arsenal man put in a complete performance, not only displaying clinical finishing, but also a physical presence that tortured the home defence.

Chelsea found regular joy with runs from midfield and it was Havertz’s early burst that ended in a lay-off to Giroud, who cut inside and tucked inside the far post with his left foot.

The second goal was a joy, a dinked right-footed finish over Pastor, while the header from N’Golo Kante’s cross from the right completed a ‘perfect’ hat-trick.

The spot-kick, drilled in with his left foot, was Giroud’s final act before he was withdrawn.

Chelsea coast to top spot

While both teams made changes safe in the knowledge their progress was already certain, there was still the carrot of a theoretically easier draw in the last 16 to play for.

Chelsea would not have expected such a straightforward evening against a Sevilla side who sit fifth in La Liga and took a point from a goalless draw at Stamford Bridge in October.

Yet, bar a period in the first half when set-pieces from the left caused trouble in the visiting defence, the Blues coasted to a fourth successive Champions League victory for the first time since they lifted the trophy in 2012.

Havertz and Pulisic, who have seen Hakim Ziyech emerge during their time on the sidelines, were both lively, while Callum Hudson-Odoi was a threat down the right.

Antonio Rudiger saw a header from a corner cleared off the line at the end of an even first period, before Chelsea dominated the second half as the hosts tired.

By the end, they had extended their unbeaten run in all competitions to 15 games, during which time they have kept eight clean sheets.

What’s next?

Chelsea host Leeds in the Premier League on Saturday (20:00 GMT), before rounding off the Champions League group stage at home to Krasnodar next Tuesday. Sevilla play Real Madrid in La Liga at the weekend before a European date with Rennes.

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Sevilla

  1. Squad number33Player namePastor

  2. Squad number16Player nameNavas

  3. Squad number3Player nameGómez

  4. Squad number20Player nameDiego Carlos

  5. Squad number4Player nameRekik

  6. Squad number6Player nameGudelj

  7. Squad number10Player nameRakitic

  8. Squad number22Player nameVázquez

  9. Squad number14Player nameRodríguez

  10. Squad number23Player nameIdrissi

  11. Squad number15Player nameEn-Nesyri

  1. Squad number5Player nameOcampos

  2. Squad number8Player nameJordán

  3. Squad number11Player nameEl Haddadi

  4. Squad number12Player nameKoundé

  5. Squad number21Player nameTorres

Chelsea

  1. Squad number16Player nameMendy

  2. Squad number28Player nameAzpilicueta

  3. Squad number4Player nameChristensen

  4. Squad number2Player nameRüdiger

  5. Squad number33Player nameEmerson

  6. Squad number29Player nameHavertz

  7. Squad number5Player nameJorginho

  8. Squad number17Player nameKovacic

  9. Squad number20Player nameHudson-Odoi

  10. Squad number18Player nameGiroud

  11. Squad number10Player namePulisic

  1. Squad number7Player nameKanté

  2. Squad number11Player nameWerner

  3. Squad number19Player nameMount

  4. Squad number22Player nameZiyech

  5. Squad number23Player nameGilmour

Line-ups

Sevilla

  • 33Pastor
  • 16NavasSubstituted forKoundéat 59′minutes
  • 3GómezBooked at 82mins
  • 20Santos Silva
  • 4Rekik
  • 6GudeljBooked at 15mins
  • 10RakiticSubstituted forTorresat 75′minutes
  • 22VázquezSubstituted forEl Haddadiat 66′minutes
  • 14RodríguezSubstituted forJordánat 60′minutesBooked at 90mins
  • 23IdrissiBooked at 42minsSubstituted forOcamposat 60′minutes
  • 15En-Nesyri

Substitutes

  • 1Vaclik
  • 5Ocampos
  • 8Jordán
  • 9de Jong
  • 11El Haddadi
  • 12Koundé
  • 21Torres
  • 25Reges
  • 29González
  • 30Zarzana
  • 35Vázquez
  • 36Romero

Chelsea

  • 16Mendy
  • 28Azpilicueta
  • 4Christensen
  • 2Rüdiger
  • 33Emerson
  • 29HavertzSubstituted forKantéat 67′minutes
  • 5JorginhoSubstituted forGilmourat 85′minutes
  • 17KovacicBooked at 37minsSubstituted forZiyechat 67′minutesBooked at 90mins
  • 20Hudson-Odoi
  • 18GiroudSubstituted forWernerat 84′minutes
  • 10PulisicBooked at 43minsSubstituted forMountat 67′minutesBooked at 90mins

Substitutes

  • 1Arrizabalaga
  • 3Alonso
  • 7Kanté
  • 9Abraham
  • 11Werner
  • 13Caballero
  • 14Tomori
  • 19Mount
  • 21Chilwell
  • 22Ziyech
  • 23Gilmour
  • 24James

Referee:
Artur Manuel Soares Dias

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