Champions League: Havertz On Target For Chelsea, Juventus Held In Spain

Chelsea recorded a 2-0 win over Lille in the first leg of the Uefa Champions League second round tie thanks to goals by Kai Havertz and Christian Pulisic.

Germany forward Havertz, who had already had two attempts on goal early in the game, headed down a Hakim Ziyech corner in the eighth minute and the ball bounced high off the turf into the net.

Chelsea left struggling striker Romelu Lukaku on the bench and it was American Pulisic who hit the second in the 63rd minute with a curling finish after N’Golo Kante’s surging run and pinpoint pass.

The action was at times frenetic as Ligue 1 champions Lille sought to take something from the game into the second leg at home on March 16.

“They played good football and the first half was very difficult for us. Now it is halftime and the next game we have to win as well,” Havertz told BT Sport.

The French side, who topped their qualifying group ahead of Salzburg, VfL Wolfsburg, and Sevilla, kept Chelsea busy going forward with buzzing runs from Renato Sanches, Benjamin Andre, and Jonathan Bamba.

But efforts from all three and from Canadian striker Jonathan David were either blocked, usually by defensive rock Thiago Silva, or collected easily by Edouard Mendy in the Chelsea goal.

Chelsea, who face Liverpool in the League Cup final on Sunday, may be satisfied with their two-goal lead in the tie but they will be concerned for the fitness of pivotal midfielder Mateo Kovacic and of in-form Ziyech who both limped off early in the second half.

Juventus played out a 1-1 with Villarreal in Spain.

Manchester United are in action against Atletico Madrid on Wednesday night.

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Taiwo Ibrahim

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