Unlike last month’s FA Cup semi-final win against Pep Guardiola’s men, Hakim Ziyech’s powerful strike in Saturday’s Premier League match was an equaliser rather than being the only goal of the game but after Marcos Alonso completed a 2-1 in the last few minutes, Ziyech was equally satisfied with his goal.
However despite finding their net in both victories, our no.22 is not going as far as saying he and the team now have City’s measure; in strength.
“I think we like to play against strong teams,” is Ziyech’s simple explanation.
“Everybody was hungry in this game, even in the first half. We go with the 1-0 down to the dressing room [at half-time] but it was more like a 0-0. We were also a little bit lucky that they missed the penalty. If it is 2-0 you go into the dressing room differently, but they missed and we still had faith and belief and I think we showed that in the second half. We came good out of the dressing room.”
‘My goal was a good moment for me, I took it with both hands and it was good that it goes in. For me it was more like a draw game but in the end we still had one attack and we claimed the win.’
Ziyech revealed the players allowed themselves a small celebration in the dressing room afterwards for having achieved what their target was at the start of the day – to move up third place in the Premier League table. With one more game against Man City — hugely significant — he also considered the effect this weekend’s win has on the Chelsea team ahead of that Champions League final meeting.
“It gives confidence of course but in three weeks it will be a totally different game, and three weeks is still long, we have some other games to play. When it comes closer we will focus fully on that game.”