Chelsea thrash Manchester City to win fourth-consecutive FA Youth Cup
LONDON -- Chelsea clinched their fourth-consecutive FA Youth Cup by beating Manchester City 5-1 at Stamford Bridge to triumph 6-2 on aggregate.
Goals from Trevoh Chalobah, Ike Ugbo, Callum Hudson-Odoi, Dujon Sterling and substitute Cole Dasilva ensured the Blues continue their dominance of the competition and secured Jody Morris his first silverware as coach in front of the watching Roman Abramovich, Antonio Conte, John Terry and Frank Lampard.
A 1-1 draw between the teams in the first leg at Etihad Campus a week ago raised City hopes that the FA Youth Cup might be prised away from Chelsea for the first time since 2013, but the visitors were ultimately overwhelmed by the Blues' firepower at Stamford Bridge for the third-successive year.
Morris made just one change to the Chelsea starting XI that secured the first-leg draw, replacing goalkeeper Jared Thompson with Jamie Cumming. His players started the match with the confidence of holders and were quick to test City goalkeeper Aro Muric.
The Swiss youth international was forced to parry a Sterling shot wide inside five minutes after the wing-back had burst into the penalty area between two City defenders and, from the resulting corner, was at full stretch again to keep out a 25-yard curler from Jacob Maddox.
Chelsea then made their breakthrough, Chalobah rising highest to meet a pinpoint Mason Mount corner and power a header past Muric from 12 yards.
Stung by the early goal, City pushed forward in search of an instant reply but disciplined defending from the Chelsea back four, marshalled by the impressive Chalobah, kept the visitors' talented frontline of Lukas Nmecha, Jadon Sancho, Phil Foden and Brahim Diaz from troubling Cumming.
Instead it was the home side that continued to carry the greater threat on the break, Hudson-Odoi surging from the halfway line to the penalty area before finding himself smothered by two recovering City defenders.
Chelsea's pace in transition proved decisive in the 24th minute though, as Sterling raced away from Tyreke Wilson on the right flank before clipping in an inviting cross that Ugbo, scorer in the first leg, acrobatically turned beyond Muric.
It wasn't until a minute before the break that City created a presentable opportunity of their own. A slick passing move resulted in Nmecha shifting the ball onto his right foot just outside the penalty area and curling a shot that Cumming beat away.
Chelsea began the second half firmly in command but City restarted with the greater urgency, Nmecha serving notice of their intentions by firing into the side-netting after being played clean through by Diaz.
Moments later the striker atoned for his miss, chesting down Matt Smith's chipped through pass and coolly side-footing the ball into the far corner.
Nmecha's goal shook Chelsea out of their temporary slumber and on the hour mark they hit back in spectacular style.
Chalobah pushed out of defence and clipped the ball into the feet of Hudson-Odoi, who drove diagonally at the City defence from left to right before lashing a shot into the top corner off the post.
The emphatic nature of Chelsea's response discouraged the visitors, who were quickly punished for their increasing sloppiness.
Sterling won the ball on the halfway line from a City throw, exchanged passes with Ugbo and raced into the penalty area from the right before whipping a shot beyond Muric at his near post.
He and the rest of the Chelsea players immediately wheeled away to embrace a delighted Morris in the dugout, their victory secure long before Dasilva followed up a George McEachran shot to add a fifth in the final minutes.