Pep Guardiola will return even sooner next Sunday with City for the League Cup final but with doubts over whether De Bruyne will be fit to face Tottenham. The influential Belgian playmaker hobbled off with an apparent ankle injury just as City is entering a crunch period of the season. An 11-point Premier League lead makes collecting that trophy a near-certainty. Still, there is also a first Champions League semifinal with City for Guardiola against Paris Saint-Germain in the club’s priority title.
While Guardiola has been in charge almost five years at City, Thomas Tuchel has only been at Chelsea for three months. After picking up the pieces following the firing of Frank Lampard, the German now has a shot at a trophy in the FA Cup final against Leicester or Southampton next month. And like City, Chelsea remains in Champions League contention, with Real Madrid waiting in the last four.
The performance against City will offer Tuchel encouragement of silverware. While Timo Werner struggles for goals, assists are less of a problem – with his 12th of his first season at Chelsea setting up Ziyech for the close-range finish in the 55th minute.
There were no Chelsea fans to witness the goal in person. But they should be allowed back into Wembley for the May 15 final as coronavirus restrictions are eased. How to get safely back into venues will be assessed at Wembley on Sunday when up to 4,000 locals from the north London district are allowed to see Leicester take on Southampton if they can produce a negative coronavirus test result.
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