Chelsea set 'standard' with victory over Villa says Gallagher

AFP , Thursday 8 Feb 2024

Chelsea midfielder Conor Gallagher said his side have set a standard they must maintain after ending their dismal run with a vital FA Cup win at Aston Villa.

Conor Gallagher
Aston Villa s Brazilian midfielder #06 Douglas Luiz (R) vies with Chelsea s English midfielder #23 Conor Gallagher during the EnglisPh FA Cup fourth round replay football match between Aston Villa and Chelsea at Villa Park in Birmingham, central England on February 7, 2024. AFP


Gallagher scored his first goal of the season to put Chelsea on course for their 3-1 victory against Villa in Wednesday's FA Cup fourth round replay.

Nicolas Jackson's header and Enzo Fernandez's superb free kick ensured Chelsea would bounce back from successive heavy defeats against Wolves and Liverpool.

Chelsea had travelled to Villa in turmoil after dropping to 11th in the Premier League as the pressure mounted on Mauricio Pochettino in his first season in charge.

England international Gallagher knows Chelsea cannot afford to slip back to the disjointed displays that have marred much of a turbulent campaign.

"There was a lot of hunger and that's what we need every game," he said after Chelsea booked a fifth-round tie against Leeds.

"I think before the game you could sense that because the last two games have not been good enough by our standards.

"Everyone was really up for it and raring to give our fans a good performance and we did."

Chelsea must prove they have heeded Gallagher's rallying cry when they return to Premier League action in Monday's trip to Crystal Palace.

The London derby forms part of a hectic month for Chelsea, who can redefine the perception of their season by beating Liverpool in the League Cup final on February 25.

"We know how we can play, we showed that. A lot of times this season we haven't been good enough, but also a lot of times we have been really good against the top teams so we know how good we can be," Gallagher said.

"We're really buzzing and Villa are a top team so to beat them, and the way we did it, was brilliant so we will take a lot of confidence from that, and hopefully take it into the next game."

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