Romelu Lukaku scored for Chelsea in a 5-1 FA Cup third-round victory over minor league Chesterfield on Saturday — his first goal since upsetting manager Thomas Tuchel in a television interview.
Lukaku struck in the 20th minute to put his side 3-0 up after goals by Timo Werner and Callum Hudson-Odoi had put the European champions in control at Stamford Bridge.
Andreas Christensen made it 4-0 before halftime and Hakim Ziyech scored from the spot in the second half before Chesterfield’s travelling fans were rewarded with a consolation goal for Akwasi Asante.
Record signing Lukaku was dropped for last Sunday’s Premier League draw with Liverpool after comments he made in an interview recorded three weeks ago, saying he was not happy with his role at the club and would like to return to Inter Milan.
After holding clear-the-air talks with Tuchel he returned for the League Cup semi-final against Tottenham Hotspur on Wednesday.
Tuchel made several changes to his Chelsea side as he juggled a hectic schedule and COVID-19 infections, giving debuts to keeper Marcus Bettinelli and youngster Lewis Hall.
But his side were still too strong for Chesterfield as Chelsea made it 24 wins in a row in the FA Cup third round.
“I’m happy with the attitude and how we started,” said Tuchel. “We started strong and decided the match very early. This is what we wanted.”
Chesterfield manager James Rowe said Asante’s goal gave the club something special to remember.
“Great to get the goal at the end for us and the supporters and what a proud day to be a Spireite,” he said.
“Halftime was about recollecting our thoughts. We focused at halftime and drew the second half 1-1.”
Newcastle humiliated by Cambridge in FA Cup, holders Leicester through
Newcastle United suffered a humiliating 1-0 home defeat by third-tier Cambridge United but holders Leicester City began their defence of the FA Cup by trouncing Premier League rivals Watford 4-1 in the third round on Saturday.
Chelsea, last season’s runners-up, romped to a 5-1 home win against fifth-tier Chesterfield with Romelu Lukaku amongst the goals at Stamford Bridge.
Premier League strugglers Newcastle flexed their new financial muscle by signing England full back Kieran Trippier from Atletico Madrid on Friday and he made his debut in front of an expectant St James’ Park crowd.
But humble Cambridge were undaunted as Joe Ironside fired in a second-half goal and keeper Dimitar Mitov made a series of saves to deliver a fairytale win their 5,000 visiting fans celebrated in ecstatic fashion.
Bulgarian keeper Mitov made an incredible save in stoppage time to deny Joelinton an equaliser and Eddie Howe’s side were booed at the final whistle as Newcastle’s season went from bad to worse.
“I have got to play here and it is stuff I dreamed of. Alan Shearer was my hero, I grew up idolising him — now I have scored the winner at St James’ Park,” Ironside said.
“It’s a momentous day for the club.”
Leicester, who stunned Chelsea in last season’s final to win the competition for the first time, welcomed back former title-winning manager Claudio Ranieri but showed him no sympathy in a dominant display interrupted only by a floodlight failure.
Youri Tielemans put them ahead from the penalty spot and James Maddison made it 2-0. Joao Pedro replied for Watford but second-half goals by Harvey Barnes and Marc Albrighton sealed Leicester’s place in the fourth round draw.
Chelsea were clinical against Chesterfield with Timo Werner, Callum Hudson-Odoi, Lukaku and Andreas Christensen all on target in a predictably one-sided first half.
Hakim Ziyech made it 5-0 but Chesterfield’s Akwasi Asante sent the thousands of visiting fans wild with a consolation goal.
Burnley became the first Premier League casualty of the third round when they lost 2-1 to Huddersfield Town for whom Matty Pearson headed a late winner.
Everton’s under-pressure manager Rafa Benitez earned a little respite as his side edged out Hull City 3-2 having fallen behind in the opening minute — Andos Townsend securing only his side’s second win in 13 matches in extra time.
Crystal Palace came from a goal to down to win 2-1 against London rivals Millwall with goals from Michael Olise and Jean-Philippe Mateta while Brentford enjoyed a comfortable 4-1 victory away to Port Vale thanks to a Bryan Mbeumo hat-trick.
Brighton & Hove Albion beat Championship promotion chasers West Bromwich Albion 2-1 after extra time at the Hawthorns.
Ten-man Southampton edged a 3-2 victory after extra time at second-tier Swansea City — a game played in an empty stadium because of COVID-19 restrictions in Wales.
Shane Long scored the winner for Saints who played 90 minutes with a man less after Yan Valery was red-carded.
Minor league Kidderminster Harriers, the lowest-ranked team in the third round, caused a shock when the sixth-tier club beat Championship side Reading 2-1.
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