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Chelsea fans will like what Olivier Giroud has told team-mates after Europa League win | Football | Sport


Chelsea squeaked through to the semi-finals of the competition on Thursday night with a 4-3 win, 5-3 on aggregate over Slavia Prague.

They will now face Eintracht Frankfurt next month in a battle for a place in the final in Baku on May 29.

The prospect of an all English final is still on now, with Arsenal overcoming Napoli on Thursday night to book a last-four clash with Valencia.

But Chelsea, a goal up from the first leg, almost blew it in spectacular fashion on Thursday.

They surged into a 4-1 half time lead through two goals from Pedro, an own goal and a tenth Europa League goal from Giroud.

Chelsea, though, then saw Slavia fight back with two goals from Petr Sevcik which left them hanging on in the end.

What should have been a stroll turned into a nervy encounter, and left manager Maurizio Sarri bemoaning the fact that once again his team had faded in a game after a bright start.

Giroud, 32, who wants guarantees of more first-team football if he is to agree to a new one year deal this summer, warned: “We need to learn from the mistakes we made in the second half.

“We started the game very well, we were very efficient.

“But we dropped our intensity and made some technical mistakes. It is a game of two halves and we need to learn to play the intensity of the first half in the second.

“Scoring four goals in a half is very nice but obviously we should have kept control of the game.

“We could have put more pressure on the ball.

“We knew they were not going to give up so we were under pressure until the end.

“The most important thing was to win, but obviously we need to be more solid.”

Chelsea’s battle to clinch a top four place now continues on Monday when they face Burnley at Stamford Bridge.

Sarri confirmed that key man Eden Hazard, taken off against Slavia after suffering an ankle injury, is likely to be fit and that the injury was not serious.

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