MX23RW : Thursday, January 17 03:33:51
May 15, 2017 at 8pm UK at ​Stamford Bridge
Attendance: 41,473
Chelsea
4-3
Watford
Terry (22'), Azpilicueta (36'), Batshuayi (49'), Fabregas (88')
FT(HT: 2-1)
Capoue (24'), Janmaat (51'), Okaka (74')
Prodl (92')

Result: Chelsea edge Watford in seven-goal thriller to keep title party going

Cesc Fabregas comes off the bench to score a late winner for Chelsea, as the Premier League champions earn a dramatic 4-3 victory over Watford at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea's Premier League title party continued on Monday night as they came out on top 4-3 in a thrilling contest against Watford at Stamford Bridge.

The Blues squandered a two-goal lead in the second half but battled back late on through a Cesc Fabregas winner, earning them a record-equalling 29th top-flight win of the season.

For all Watford's efforts they were unable to end their miserable run of form, which now stands at five defeats in a row to leave them down in 16th place with one game remaining.

Antonio Conte is held aloft following Chelsea's win over Watford on May 15, 2017© SilverHub

Antonio Conte used Chelsea's homecoming as a chance to make mass changes to his starting lineup - nine in all from the title-clinching win over West Bromwich Albion a few days ago.

Among those to come in for just a fourth league start of the season was skipper John Terry, who marked what will likely be his penultimate appearance at Stamford Bridge with his 67th goal for the club.

After an uneventful opening quarter to the match, Terry reacted quickest to prod home from an uncleared corner to finally spark the game into life.

Chelsea's John Terry celebrates scoring the first goal against Watford on May 15, 2017© SilverHub

Watford, previously without a goal in any of their last five away outings, responded almost immediately through Etienne Capoue, who capitalised on a poor defensive header from Terry to nod past stand-in keeper Asmir Begovic.

A relatively quiet Eden Hazard had a chance to edge his side back ahead 34 minutes in, cutting inside into a good position but seeing his shot take a touch on its way wide of the target.

It did not take Chelsea too much longer to regain their advantage, however, as another unlikely scorer in Cesar Azpilicueta found a way through, picking out the bottom corner with a half-volley inside the box to open his own account for the season.

Chelsea's Cesar Azpilicueta celebrates scoring his side's second goal against Watford on May 15, 2017© SilverHub

The scoreline remained that way at the break - bad news for the visitors, as they had failed to recover from a losing position at the midway point to win a match in 55 Premier League attempts.

Chelsea edged further ahead less than five minutes after the restart as, after Willian was denied by a fine Heurelho Gomes save, the Blues again made the most of the corner.

It initially went short to Kenedy, whose shot deflected nicely into the path of Nathan Ake to unselfishly pick out Michy Batshuayi for the simplest of tap-ins.

Chelsea's Michy Batshuayi during the Premier League match against Watford on May 15, 2017© SilverHub

Much like in the first half, though, Watford were back into the contest instantly after Daryl Janmaat took matters into his own hands, jinking past a couple of players and keeping his composure when up against Begovic.

Only twice before had Chelsea shipped more than once on home soil - in defeats to Liverpool and Crystal Palace - but they were in no mood to gift the Hornets a share of the spoils in the remaining 40 minutes or so.

Batshuayi had a shot kept out by Gomes and Azpilicueta was also denied by the Brazilian at full stretch, yet it was the visiting side who found the sixth goal of the evening.

Three minutes after being brought off the bench, Stefano Okaka - capped for the Italy national squad by Conte - profited on some more slack play at the back to slam home following a scramble.

John Terry and Stefano Okaka during the Premier League match between Chelsea and Watford on May 15, 2017© SilverHub

Substitute Ola Aina and Janmaat both came close to finding a way through before the killer seventh did arrive, with Fabregas tucking past Gomes from the edge of the box after being picked out by Willian.

Watford failed to muster one last response in the final few minutes, and their night turned sour when Sebastian Prodl was shown a second yellow at the death for a trip on Pedro as things threatened to boil over at the end of a lively contest.

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Chelsea's John Terry during the EFL Cup match between Chelsea and Bristol Rovers at Stamford Bridge on August 23, 2016
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool22183150104057
2Manchester CityMan City22172359174253
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs22160646222448
4Chelsea22145340172347
5Arsenal22125546321441
6Manchester UnitedMan Utd22125544321241
7Watford229583232032
8Leicester CityLeicester229492625131
9West Ham UnitedWest Ham229493032-231
10Everton228683331230
11Wolverhampton WanderersWolves228592328-529
12Bournemouth2283113142-1127
13Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2275102430-626
14Crystal Palace2264122028-822
15Burnley2263132343-2021
16Southampton2247112339-1619
17Cardiff CityCardiff2254131941-2219
18Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2246121631-1518
19Fulham2235142049-2914
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2225151337-2411

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