Their triumph set up an all-England final for the second time in three seasons, following the Liverpool-Tottenham Hotspur clash in 2019.
Pulisic was conspicuously absent from Chelsea’s starting lineup, eight days after scoring in the first leg in Madrid. He had been in terrific form since returning to regular duty six weeks ago, scoring four goals and influencing the attack with confident runs.
Manager Thomas Tuchel did not drop him Wednesday because of injury or a slip in performance. Rather, he selected a player in supreme form, Kai Havertz, who scored twice Saturday in a Premier League victory over Fulham, and paired him with German teammate Werner.
Since his appointment in January, Tuchel has emphasized defense. Wednesday’s result gave the Blues 17 shutouts in 24 matches across all competitions since his arrival. Chelsea has conceded multiple goals only twice.
Chelsea did not sit back, though, and the opportunities began to surface. Werner was a step offside while scoring in the 18th minute.
Chelsea then went ahead. Tight, one-touch passing unlocked Real Madrid’s central resistance. N’Golo Kante set up Havertz for a chip over charging goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois. The shot struck the crossbar and floated to Werner a step from the target for the easiest of headers.
After intermission, Chelsea smelled blood. Another goal would have left little doubt about its place in the final. Havertz almost got it less than two minutes into the half, heading Cesar Azpilicueta’s cross off the crossbar. Mount inexplicably missed the mark after drawing Courtois off his line.
Chelsea had two huge chances to expand the lead, but Courtois used his right foot to thwart Havertz in a one-on-one situation and defender Federico Valverde blocked Kante’s shot at the end of a swift counterattack charged by Werner.
More glorious opportunities had passed without a killer goal, allowing Real Madrid to cling to hope.
Pulisic was calm and composed with the ball deep on the right side of the box. He then crossed to Mount at the edge of the six-yard box for a one-time stab.
The tension was broken. The Blues of Chelsea were on their way to a showdown with the Sky Blues of Manchester City.
Here are the goals:
Source Credit: The Washington Post