Nkunku returns with a bang as 10-man Chelsea beat Brighton to keep Europa League dreams alive


Chelsea are now one win away from a Europa League qualification spot after beating Brighton 2-1.

Chelsea were on course for a 2-0 win before Reece James' red card complicated matters. Brighton pulled one back, but the Blues had enough of a buffer and managed to hold on for three points.

Mauricio Pochettino's side have made a remarkable turnaround and are now on course to qualify for the Europa League. After beating Brighton, Chelsea now only need to win their final match of the season to secure their place in the second-tier European competition.

how did that happen

The game started at full speed from the start, with Noni Madueke testing Bart Verbruggen with the game's first shot on target just three minutes into the game.

The two teams exchanged efforts, with Simon Adingra and Cole Palmer going close before Palmer opened the scoring for Chelsea in the 34th minute. The young talent showed great skill, as she headed home Mark Cucurella's pass to give Chelsea the lead.

A report revealed earlier in the evening that the Premier League will vote to keep or abolish VAR next season. However, the technology is still in use during this season, and came under scrutiny later in the first half when Tariq Lamptey appeared to elbow Mykhaylo Modric in the head, forcing the Ukrainian off the pitch. However, the VAR chose not to intervene, allowing Lamptey to escape without penalty.

The second half witnessed Chelsea wasting several opportunities to increase their lead, with Nicholas Jackson wasting opportunities to provide the killer pass. Brighton responded with Pascal Gross' shot wide of the target before Malou Giusto and Christopher Nkunku combined to double Chelsea's lead. Nkunku coolly slotted the ball into the bottom corner, and he came back from injury strong.

Despite Chelsea's dominance, Brighton fought back, with Danny Welbeck scoring from close range after Reece James received a red card for a harsh penalty. Ansu Fati also hit the post in stoppage time, but Chelsea held on to secure the win.

With this victory, Chelsea rose to sixth place in the standings, maintaining its hopes of catching up with Tottenham Hotspur in fifth place. On the other hand, Brighton's position in the top half is under threat after winning just two of their last 12 league games.



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