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22 Nov 2017

Willian eases Chelsea into last 16 after early red card ends Qarabag chances

FK Qarabag 0-4 Chelsea

Willian scored twice as Chelsea progressed to the last 16 of the Champions League with a comfortable victory against 10-man Qarabag.

Forward Willian had scored just one goal prior to this game this season - against Everton in the League Cup - but played a pivotal role in this win for the Blues, also winning two penalties.

After former Birmingham City midfielder Michel hit the bar for Qarabag, Chelsea were awarded their first spot kick when Rashad Sadygov was adjudged to have pulled down Willian inside the area. Sadygov was subsequently sent off and Eden Hazard sent the goalkeeper the wrong way from the spot.

The visitors quickly added a second following a stunning passage of play which ended with Hazard backheeling the ball for Willian to side-foot home.

Chelsea beat Qarabag 6-0 at Stamford Bridge in the first Group C game between the two sides back in September and a repeat of such a scoreline looked likely with Antonio Conte's side capable of scoring with every attack.

Another foul on Willian midway through the second half allowed Cesc Fabregas to add a third from the spot before Willian's thunderous drive late on ensured Chelsea's place into the knockout round with a game to spare.

Chelsea, the last English team to win the Champions League when they triumphed in 2012, move top of their group with 10 points from five games, although Roma can reclaim top spot if they beat Atletico Madrid later on Wednesday.

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