Abraham and Pulisic on target as Lampard's Chelsea goes third

Goals from Tammy Abraham and Christian Pulisic earned Chelsea a 2-1 win over Watford - the Blues' fifth straight Premier League victory.

Christian Pulisic of Chelsea (obscured) celebrates with Jorginho, Tammy Abraham and teammates after scoring his team's second goal during the Premier League match between Watford FC and Chelsea FC at Vicarage Road.   -  GETTY IMAGES

Tammy Abraham and Christian Pulisic scored in either half as Chelsea beat Watford 2-1 to move up to third with its fifth straight Premier League win.

The Blues took an early lead against their bottom-of-the-table host when Abraham reached Jorginho's pass and guided the ball over Ben Foster.

Watford's goalkeeper denied Abraham, Pulisic and Mason Mount before Chelsea's United States international - who scored a hat-trick against Burnley last weekend - turned home Abraham's cross 10 minutes into the second half.

Gerard Deulofeu scored an 80th-minute penalty - one that was only awarded by VAR following a lengthy delay - but Frank Lampard's side held on to climb above Leicester City in the table.

 

Watford was up against it after just five minutes when Abraham registered his ninth league goal of the season, though it was his first in five games for the Blues.

The England striker latched onto a brilliant first-time throughball from Jorginho, capitalised on hesitation between Craig Dawson and Foster and poked his finish over the Watford goalkeeper.

Abraham had a great chance to add a second when a deflected Mount shot fell kindly to him, yet he was thwarted by Foster, who then did brilliantly to tip Pulisic's header behind.

Deulofeu fired Watford's first chance of note wide and the Hornets were fortunate to only be one goal behind at the break after Foster pushed Mount's driven effort onto the crossbar.

The goalkeeper denied Mount again early in the second half too, though he was unable to prevent Pulisic turning in Abraham's cross for his fourth goal in eight days.

Pulisic nearly had another but Foster flicked out his left foot and the Hornets had hope when they were awarded a penalty 10 minutes from time.

Referee Anthony Taylor was unmoved when Deulofeu went to ground after Jorginho flicked a leg out and though the Spaniard appeared to take another step after the contact before going to ground, the spot-kick was awarded following a VAR review.

There was nearly a dramatic conclusion to proceedings when the brilliant Foster, up in Chelsea's box for a free-kick, headed towards goal but Kepa Arrizabalaga denied him in the final act as the visitor held on.

What does it mean? Blues bounce back to win again

Lampard's squad has encountered few setbacks in recent weeks, but the Blues boss will be delighted they got back to winning ways following their EFL Cup loss to Manchester United in midweek.

After Arsenal was held to a draw by Wolves, Chelsea now has a six-point cushion over the fifth-placed Gunners. Meanwhile, Watford remains winless and look like relegation fodder.

What's next?

Chelsea will look to take a significant step towards qualifying for the last 16 of the Champions League when it hosts Ajax on Tuesday before entertaining Crystal Palace in the Premier League in Saturday's early kick-off.

Watford will begin that round of fixtures with a crucial Friday night encounter with Norwich, which is only two points above it.

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