Thomas Tuchel's stunning debut season with Chelsea only got better on Saturday as the Blues defeated Manchester City 1-0 to clinch the Champions League title. This is Chelsea's second Champions League crown and the first of Tuchel's managerial career.
Kai Havertz's goal in the first half was all that separated the two teams in an injury-marred contest. Pep Guardiola's City began the game on the front foot and relentlessly attacked the Chelsea back-line, which looked wobbly at first but soon found its feet.
UCL final highlights:
Chelsea's Timo Werner had a couple of chances early on but failed to trouble the 'keeper. The Blues began to up the ante around the half-hour mark as Reece James and Ben Chilwell guarded the flanks to perfection to neutralise the threat posed by Raheem Sterling and Riyad Mahrez.
Tuchel was forced into making an early change as Andreas Christensen was brought on to replace Thiago Silva in the 39th minute, who seemed to have pulled his groin. Silva was the captain of the PSG side that lost last season's Champions League final and was the only Chelsea player to have played in a Champions League summit clash before Saturday.
Havertz put Chelsea ahead in the 42nd minute as he finished a stunning defence-splitting long ball from Mason Mount. The German timed his run to perfection and rounded up Ederson, who creditably got a touch on the ball, to roll the ball into an empty net and score his career's first ever Champions League goal.
His strike made him the youngest German player to score in a UEFA Champions League final since Borussia Dortmund's Lars Ricken did so in the 1997 final. Much like Ricken, Havertz's goal also came in a winning cause.
City began the second half on a bright note but suffered a setback early on as Kevin de Bruyne picked up a head injury after colliding with Antonio Rudiger. The City skipper limped off in tears and was replaced by Gabriel Jesus, while Rudiger was booked for the challenge.
Guardiola soon brought on Fernandinho to add more solidity but City simply lacked the bite up front. The Cityzens had a chance in the 69th minute when Mahrez whipped in a low cross towards Ilkay Gundogan at the far post but Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta made a fine sliding tackle to clear the danger.
Christian Pulisic, who became the first American to play in a Champions League final, nearly put the tie to bed in the 73rd minute. He had a one-on-one opportunity but his dink sailed wide.
Sergio Aguero, who was making his last appearance for City, came on shortly after but even he was unable to inspire the side as City simply struggled to find a way past the Chelsea defence.
Chelsea held on, doggedly, to ensure the Champions League title returned to Stamford Bridge.
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