Chelsea tightens grip on third after victory against Norwich

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Chelsea players celebrating hard-fought win against Norwich at Stamford bridge

Chelsea tightened their grip on a Champions League spot as Olivier Giroud’s header gave the blues a 1-0 win over relegated Norwich at Stamford bridge.

With Manchester United and Leicester, both starting the matchday a point behind the Blues, to play later in the week it was imperative Chelsea picked up three points to guarantee the pair could not leapfrog them.

Chelsea took the lead when Pulisic’s curled cross found Giroud from the left. The target man buried the ball in the back of the net beyond a helpless Krul. The frenchman has scored in three consecutive Premier League starts for the first time since January 2017.

Chelsea forward Olivier Giroud scores against Norwich at Stamford Bridge

Norwich had yet to muster a shot of any kind and despite the scoreline little changed after the break, with Chelsea again playing attack against defence while finding their path to a second goal frustrated by an in-form Krul.

Chelsea continued to create more chances with Pulisic and Willian, however,  both were denied by Krul.

Giroud fired Cesar Azpilicueta’s pull-back high and wide before failing to connect with Ruben Loftus-Cheek’s flick, while Kurt Zouma flashed a free header wide from a corner.

However, against an unusually resolute Norwich defence, Chelsea returned to winning ways after their defeat at Sheffield United last weekend.

Chelsea face Manchester United in the FA Cup semi-finals at Wembley on Sunday, while Norwich host Europe-chasing Burnley on Saturday in the Premier League.

 

Chidi Nwoke.

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