Chelsea book final against Man United

Chelsea book final against Man United

Wembley : Olivier Giroud proved the scourge of Southampton once again, setting Chelsea on course for FA Cup semifinal success and a mouth-watering clash with Manchester United.

A week after coming off the bench to net a brace and inspire a remarkable comeback win at embattled Saints in the Premier League, the 31-year-old returned to haunt Mark Hughes’ side at Wembley.

Southampton’s first FA Cup semifinal appearance since 2003 ended in disappointment as Giroud showed impressive composure to slot home a goal added to by substitute Alvaro Morata as Chelsea ran out 2-0 victors.

Ex-Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho lies in wait for Antonio Conte’s men on May 19, when they can atone for last year’s shock FA Cup final defeat to Arsenal -- and perhaps give their manager a victorious send-off as speculation continues over his future.

Chelsea were firm favourites to win this semifinal and Willian hit the crossbar early in a one-sided first half, yet Saints managed to batten down the hatches.

But just seconds after half-time that hard work was undone as Giroud was all too easily allowed to jink through and turn home a smart individual goal.

Southampton rallied as substitute Nathan Redmond came close, but Morata headed the Blues through to a second successive FA Cup final as Saints’ dreams of adding to their 1976 triumph died.

There were plenty of empty seats in the Southampton end on Sunday -- although perhaps that is no surprise when you factor in the terrible football that leaves them 18th in the Premier League and facing the drop.

Such dreadful form led last year’s EFL Cup finalists to be gripped by apprehension early on as Chelsea flew out of the blocks, with Eden Hazard flashing just wide before Willian struck the crossbar after cutting inside.

Maya Yoshida produced an outstanding last-ditch challenge to deny man-of-the-match Hazard after meek defending from Ryan Bertrand, with Willian then lifting a well-placed free kick over the bar.

Mario Lemina’s tame effort 25 minutes in was Southampton’s first shot on target, but by now they had at least looked to have found a modicum of composure.

Still, Saints’ midfield was being too easily bypassed and Giroud came close with an acrobatic hooked effort as half-time approached.

Chelsea surprisingly failed to get a shot on target in the first half, yet seconds into the second half they managed it. And it put them ahead. 




Performance lab open for football players

Performance lab open for football players

The Bahrain Olympic Committee’s (BOC) Athletic Performance Lab started providing a set of medical services for all Bahrain national team athletes.BOC Projects director Lounes Madene said that the performance laboratory is managed by sports specialist Dr. Vladimir Su

Thomas De Gendt wins Romandie stage two

Thomas De Gendt wins Romandie stage two

Zurich : Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal) added to his portfolio of breakaway wins on stage 2 of the Tour de Romandie, going clear in the opening kilometres with four others before dropping them all in turn to celebrate a solo victory

Ibrahimovic rules out World Cup comeback

Ibrahimovic rules out World Cup comeback

Stockholm : Ending weeks of speculation, the Swedish football federation announced yesterday that star striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who quit the national squad in 2016, will not make a comeback for the World Cup in Russia.


Nadal steamrolls to opening win

Nadal steamrolls to opening win

Rafael Nadal charged out of the blocks yesterday to hammer Roberto Bautista Agut 6-1, 6-1 in his opening match at the Monte Carlo Masters. The 11-time champion showed no sign of the knee problems which forced him to quit ahead of an Indian Wells semi-final against Roger Federer a month ag

Ajax stun Juventus

Ajax stun Juventus

Ajax stunned Juventus to reach the Champions League semi-finals for the first time since 1997 as Matthijs de Light's thumping second-half header secured a 2-1 second-leg victory in the last eight in Turin on Tuesday. Cristiano Ronaldo, bidding for his sixth Champions League title, scored

Oil lifts most of Gulf markets

Oil lifts most of Gulf markets

Saudi Arabia’s stock market rose yesterday on the back of its banks as rising oil prices lifted most major Gulf markets, while Egypt was partly dragged down by its biggest lender Commercial International Bank. Brent oil hit 2019 high above $72 a barrel yesterday, propelled by steady economi

Minister pledges to back start-ups, new businesses

Minister pledges to back start-ups, new businesses

Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, Zayed Alzayani yesterday pledged the government ’s full support to start-ups and new commercial businesses in the Kingdom. The minister was speaking during the Bahrain British Business Forum (BBBF) meeting held yesterday at The Gulf Hotel

World’s biggest single-day election

World’s biggest single-day election

Indonesia kicked off one of the world’s biggest one-day elections yesterday, pitting president Joko Widodo against ex-general Prabowo Subianto in a race to lead the Muslim-majority nation. More than 190 million Indonesians are set to cast a ballot as polls opened shortly after 7:00

Sudan’s Bashir transferred to prison: family source

Sudan’s Bashir transferred to prison: family source

Ousted Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir has been transferred to a Khartoum prison following his toppling by the army last week, a source from his family said yesterday. “Last night, Bashir was transferred to Kober prison in Khartoum,” the source said without revealing his nam

National FinTech Talent Programme kicks off

National FinTech Talent Programme kicks off

Bahrain FinTech Bay’s National FinTech Talent Programme (FTP) has officially kicked off with its first batch of 25 Bahraini candidates. The first cohort will be part of a specialized roadmap, that will offer unique opportunities to develop their professional skills and gain insightful exper

LCD screens installed at courts

LCD screens installed at courts

LCD screens have been installed at all court halls in the Kingdom in a bid to facilitate reviewing and documenting trial records, it was announced yesterday. Supreme Judicial Council Secretary General Judge Ali Ahmed Al Kaabi confirmed in a statement that the screens have been fixed at al

Quack jailed for six months

Quack jailed for six months

An Asian man who illegally ran a clinic at a residential apartment in the Capital Governorate has been sentenced to six months in jail along with a fine of BD1,000 by the Eighth Minor Criminal Court yesterday. Ministries and Public Bodies Prosecution Chief Prosecutor Adnan Al Weda’e

110 warnings issued to edu institutes for flouting rules

110 warnings issued to edu institutes for flouting rules

The Ministry of Education has issued 110 warnings to private schools and educational institutions after discovering violations while carrying out inspection visits, sources said. Unsafe electrical connections, employees residing on the school campus and changing buildings without permission were

A welcome veto

A welcome veto

US President Donald Trump has vetoed a congressional resolution that sought to end US involvement in the Saudi-led war in Yemen, the White House said yesterday. “This resolution is an unnecessary, dangerous attempt to weaken my constitutional authorities, endangering the lives of Am

His Majesty receives prestigious Japanese honour

His Majesty receives prestigious Japanese honour

His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa received, at Al Sakhir Palace yesterday, the Japanese Ambassador to Bahrain, Hideki Ito, along with a delegation from the Stone for Peace Association of Hiroshima, led by its Board of Directors’ Chairman, Michio Umemoto. The delegation presented HM

Baby Games end in style

Baby Games end in style

The Second Bahrain Baby Olympics came to a close yesterday in a spectacular fashion at Isa Sports City’s Bahrain Volleyball Association hall in Riffa. Attended by a capacity crowd of participants and their cheering families in the stands, the closing ceremony saw all the participant