Willian scores twice as first-half blitz sends Chelsea past Hull
Last year’s beaten finalists coast into the quarter-finals.
Willian dispatched two inch-perfect finishes as Chelsea cruised past Hull 4-0 and into the FA Cup quarter-finals.
The hard-grafting Brazil forward’s smart brace sealed a comfortable Stamford Bridge victory stroll, with Olivier Giroud bagging his first Chelsea goal and Pedro also on target before the half-time whistle.
Willian also showed his savvy side, however, appearing to distract David Meyler with a cheeky comment just before the Hull midfielder missed a second-half penalty.
Meyler turned around and ruffled Willian’s hair – with both men all smiles – but the Hull star’s tame spot-kick was then saved by Willy Caballero.
And so the 29-year-old forward’s low-key labours and wily interventions paid huge dividend once more for Chelsea.
Chelsea proved so dominant as to coast through the entire second half, with under-fire manager Antonio Conte applauding fans for lending support by pointedly chanting his name.
They punished Hull’s nerves without mercy, claiming all four goals in a ruthless first-half showing.
Willian whipped home the opener from 20 yards in just the second minute.
The Brazilian skinned Kevin Stewart, picked his spot and dispatched a stylish opener, that kick-started a goal glut to stun the visitors.
Giroud missed two fine chances with Pedro failing to latch onto a smart throughball in between those failed efforts for the French forward.
Chelsea hardly had to wait for their second goal however, with Pedro hauling down a fine pass from Cess Fabregas, and drilling home.
And when Giroud mugged Stewart just outside the box, Chelsea killed any remaining shred of a Hull fightback. The former Arsenal hitman fed Willian, and the 29-year-old duly rifled in another accurate finish from distance.
Giroud even troubled the scorers himself before the break, stretching backwards smartly to poke home at the near post from Emerson’s low cross.
Hull started the second half the brighter, with Harry Wilson drawing a foul and penalty from Fabregas.
Caballero easily dealt with Meyler’s tame penalty however, thanks potentially in some small part to Willian’s word.
The Chelsea goalkeeper then denied Nouha Dicko with another smart intervention, and one that roused the Blues from their second-half slumber.
Determined to complete his hat-trick, first Willian was just unable to work space to drill home – then saw another teasing effort rebound off the upright.