English Premier League Sport

Giroud nets perfect hat-trick in comfortable win

Olivier Giroud scored a perfect hat-trick as Chelsea thrashed Dynamo Kiev 5-0 (agg: 8-0) to sail through in the Europa League.

Giroud added to Chelsea’s 3-0 aggregate lead from a corner with only five minutes gone in Kiev to effectively end any slim hopes of a comeback from the hosts, and notched a second from a wonderful Marcos Alonso cross just after the half-hour mark.

Alonso turned goalscorer after great work from Callum Hudson-Odoi on the stroke of half-time, after which Chelsea’s dominance continued with Giroud sealing his hat-trick with a header from Willian’s free-kick.

Hudson-Odoi netted one of his own on the same day he received his maiden England U21 call-up with a composed finish beyond goalkeeper Denys Boyko, as Chelsea outclassed their opponents to reach the quarter-finals in style.

The scoreline was just reward for a Chelsea performance which may put a number of fringe players – Maurizio Sarri made seven changes from the draw with Wolves – into contention to feature at Everton in their next game, live on Sky Sports this Sunday.

They harried and pressed Dynamo’s players from the off and, even when the scoreline became increasingly one-sided, never relented to produce Chelsea’s joint-largest away victory in Europe since 1972.

The Blues made it look easy, and sometimes it was – like when Giroud was given the freedom of Kiev to head home Willian’s corner inside five minutes, to leave Dynamo needing five goals without response to qualify.

They thought they had scored one of those when Denys Harmash was played through and slotted beyond Kepa Arrizabalaga, but he was denied by the linesman’s offside flag in a rare attack from the home side.

Instead Chelsea added to their lead with Giroud becoming the joint top scorer in this season’s competition from a wonderful low, bending cross from Alonso, leaving him with the job of simply guiding the ball beyond Boyko from six yards.

Chelsea’s third was all about the assist too, with Hudson-Odoi cutting inside off the right, playing a perfect one-two and squaring for Alonso to slot into an empty net on the stroke of half-time.

Would Chelsea relent in the second half, with the game out of sight of their hosts? No danger. They continued their assault on the Dynamo goal, with Willian again supplying the cross for Giroud – also totally unmarked – to nod into the far corner and claim his hat-trick.

Finally Chelsea, with a long journey back to London ahead of Sunday’s game perhaps on their mind, began to take their foot off the gas, but Alonso still came close to his second of the night when he pulled a world-class save out of Boyko from a 25-yard free-kick heading right for the top-corner.

And Hudson-Odoi, still awaiting his first Premier League start, did his cause no harm late on when he took Giroud’s pass in his stride, held off a shove in the back and raced through to calmly add Chelsea’s fifth of the night to round off the scoring.

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