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          Clash of the Day
          Belgian scores his 4th goal in 4 games for Blues

          Lukaku earns Chelsea UCL opening win over Zenit

          2021/09/14 22:30
          Daniel Oliveira
          E0

          Champions Chelsea began the defence of their Champions League trophy with a hard-fought 1-0 win over Zenit St Petersburg at Stamford Bridge thanks to Romelu Lukaku's goal.

          The Action: Chelsea had to fight really hard to break down the Russian side, who defended solidly and compactly, denying the Blues any oportunities and it took the hosts 47 minutes to register their first shot on target.

          Chelsea improved after the break and created three quick chances as Hakim Ziyech, Lukaku and Antonio Rudiger all went close.

          Thomas Tuchel's men broke the deadlock with Cesar Azpilicueta's cross was headed in from close range by Lukaku, reward for the Belgian's work-rate and hold up play being his fourth goal in four games since his return to Chelsea.

          Zenit nearly threw a cat among the pigeons late on, as they came a whisker away from a late equaliser:sub Artem Dzyuba failing to convert at the far post.

          Big Picture: Chelsea were far from their best on a nervy night for the Blues, but still ground out an important win. They now sit second in their group, after Juventus' 3-0 win over Malmo.

          The Blues will now return their focus to the Premier League and a short trip to north London to face Tottenham next Sunday.

          xG: Chelsea (0.82) 1-0 (1.10) Zenit

          Stat of the Day: Lukaku has scored 14 goals in his last 14 appearances in European competitions.

          Poll
          POLL RESULTS
          CHELSEA
          DRAW
          ZENIT
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          featured game(s)
          U Tuesday, 14 September 2021 - 20:00
          Stamford Bridge
          Bartosz Frankowski
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          Romelu Lukaku 69'
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