Breaking: Chelsea crush Crystal Palace, set up Liverpool FA Cup final

Chelsea fans

Chelsea set up a second Wembley meeting with Liverpool this season as they overcame Crystal Palace’s stubborn resistance to reach the FA Cup final.

Liverpool won the Carabao Cup final on penalties in February but Chelsea will have the chance for revenge as second-half goals from Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Mason Mount underlined their supremacy.

Unlike the first semi-final between Liverpool and Manchester City, chances were at a premium until substitute Loftus-Cheek, on for the injured Mateo Kovacic, broke the deadlock with a deflected shot after 65 minutes.

Palace had their opportunities, Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy saving well from Cheikhou Kouyate in the first hcrualf, but they could not come back after Mount slipped a low finish beyond Jack Butland with 14 minutes left.

Third time lucky for Chelsea?

Chelsea have deservedly reached their third successive FA Cup final and will now hope to reverse recent history after losing the previous two to Arsenal and Leicester City.

Manager Thomas Tuchel has a remarkable record in reaching domestic and European finals since his appointment and Chelsea will be formidable opponents for Liverpool, who are in search of a historic quadruple.

Chelsea had to work had for their triumph but they showed patience, organisation and then quality to take control after half-time.

By the end, Chelsea were in complete command and only some generosity in front of goal from substitute Romelu Lukaku, who struck the post when it seemed easier to score, and the otherwise excellent Timo Werner prevented a scoreline that would have been harsh on Palace.

Chelsea may be surrounded by turmoil off the pitch amid the sanctions against owner Roman Abramovich, but a winning mentality persists on it and the players showed admirable powers of recovery following the disappointment of their Champions League quarter-final elimination by Real Madrid.

And if the EFL Cup final between Chelsea and Liverpool earlier this season is anything to go by, the FA Cup equivalent will be a tightly-contested affair between two high-quality sides.

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