Romelu Lukaku struck as Chelsea cruised to a comfortable victory against non-league Chesterfield in a 5-1 FA Cup third-round canter at Stamford Bridge.
The Champions League holders flexed all their muscles of quality and depth to nullify any prospect of a cup upset.
Lukaku tapped in debutant Lewis Hall’s low cross and missed three gilt-edged chances before being withdrawn at half-time.
Academy product Hall, 17-year-old, impressed on his senior debut, claiming that deserved assist for Lukaku, with Timo Werner, Callum Hudson-Odoi, Andreas Christensen and Hakim Ziyech all also finding the net.
The 91 league places between the two sides told throughout, with Chelsea still able to make seven changes despite a raft of injuries and Covid-19 absentees.
Akwasi Asante tapped in a late Chesterfield consolation to spark jubilant celebrations among their raucous travelling fans, but Chelsea booked their place in the fourth-round draw for a 24th year in a row.
Chelsea vs Chesterfield latest news
GOAL! Asante scores late consolation for Chesterfield
GOAL! Ziyech converts from the penalty spot
GOAL! Christensen makes it four in the first-half
GOAL! Lukaku scores from close range
GOAL! Hudson-Odoi with a great strike
GOAL! Werner gives Chelsea an early lead
Report as Chelsea ease into next round
20:01 , Matt Verri
Lewis Hall on dream debut
19:50 , Matt Verri
“Ever since I was a kid being at Chelsea this is what I worked towards.
“To finally get the opportunity, and in front of my family and the amazing fans, it is an incredible feeling.
“I came through the development system at six to eight and got my first contract at nine and have been progressing to this moment.
“We had a meeting during the day when he [Thomas Tuchel] announced the team and I was really nervous straight away. I saw my name on the team sheet and I was shaking. It took a few hours to process it.”
Draw for the next round...
19:46 , Matt Verri
James Robson’s thoughts
19:40 , Matt Verri
You can’t begrudge Chesterfield their goal. Considering how quickly they found themselves 3-0 down, they showed real character to hang in there.
As for Tuchel, he will be delighted. Chelsea are into the fourth round with minimal fuss - and in Lewis Hall, he has a player to keep an eye on for the future.
19:22 , Matt Verri
Job done for Chelsea, as they ease into the fourth round with a 5-1 win.
Chesterfield will be delighted with that second-half though, having gone into the break 4-0 down.
Great for them to score in front of their travelling fans, while Tuchel can be very happy with his side’s display.
19:20 , Matt Verri
90 mins: Three minuted added on.
Half of those on the pitch seem to have cramp, they wouldn’t mind this one finishing now.
19:17 , Matt Verri
88 mins: Werner inside, and still... and still.... and still... eventually plays it to Loftus-Cheek but the chance has gone.
Barkley then slides it through to Havertz, but Kerr makes a brilliant challenge to stop the German.
19:15 , Matt Verri
86 mins: Chelsea players seem less and less keen to pass on the edge of the box now, very keen to try and find some space for a shot themselves.
Barkley eventually gives in and accepts he has to lay it off. Vale gets in down the right but his cross is straight at the goalkeeper.
19:12 , Matt Verri
83 mins: Travelling fans are in great race, they’re absolutely delighted with that late consolation.
Certainly the most celebrated goal in the ground this evening.
James Robson’s thoughts
19:11 , Matt Verri
It’s worth watching Hall from here. He’s struggling with cramp, but Chelsea have used all their subs. He certainly won’t want to come off after his performance today - and little sign of Chelsea wanting to take him off.
GOAL! Chelsea 5-1 Chesterfield | Akwasi Asante 80'
19:10 , Matt Verri
CHESTERFIELD HAVE THEIR GOAL!
And in front of their fans too, what a great moment. It’s hit long, Asante flicks it on and Tshimanga has his shot saved.
But it falls to Asante and he has an empty net to finish in to. Can’t believe his luck!
19:08 , Matt Verri
79 mins: Chelsea fans urging their team to shoot every time they get within about 50 yards of the goal.
Havertz pulls back the defender as he goes round the outside, and he’s penalised.
19:05 , Matt Verri
76 mins: Chelsea think they have a sixth, but the linesman has other ideas.
Lovely move. Played through to Werner and he squares it to Havertz for a tap-in, but the flag goes up.
Werner was just about offside. Hall is back on, still limping a bit.
19:03 , Matt Verri
74 mins: Chelsea have already made their five subs, but Hall is now down with cramp. Looks in a fair bit of pain.
Will Tuchel take him off and just played the rest of the match with ten men?
James Robson’s thoughts...
19:02 , Matt Verri
No surprise to see so many changes for Chelsea by the hour-mark and good to see youngsters getting a chance out there.
No sense of Tuchel settling for what he has, but makes perfect sense to rest legs while giving experience to others.
Looking at that forward line - there are still plenty of goals out there for Chelsea.
19:02 , Matt Verri
73 mins: Good from Chesterfield, who win the first header as the ball is played long into Chelsea’s box.
Falls to Kerr who hammers it at goal, but it’s over the bar. Laurence Maguire, brother of Man United and England’s Harry, is on for the visitors.
19:00 , Matt Verri
70 mins: No real pace to the game now. Chelsea know the job is done, Chesterfield a bit wary of conceding any more.
A few Blues players who have come on that could really do with impressing, though.
18:57 , Matt Verri
68 mins: Barkley clearly deciding he is going to make the most of a rare opportunity.
Cuts into space and is desperate to get the shot away. Does so from 20 yards, but curled high and wide.
18:55 , Matt Verri
66 mins: Hudson-Odoi coming off... he was brilliant in that first-half, a constant threat down the left.
Ross Barkley comes on in his place. 25 minutes or so for him to make an impact.
18:53 , Matt Verri
64 mins: Ball over the top from Chesterfield, and that’s when they have had some slight success.
Tshimanga and Kellerman both try to get on the end of it, but they’re beaten to it and the attack breaks down.
18:51 , Matt Verri
61 mins: Chesterfield fans still in great voice behind the goal... their attention will soon be back on promotion from the National League.
The visitors briefly attack, but they’re not really getting numbers forward any more.
18:49 , Matt Verri
5 - Chelsea have scored five goals in an #FACup match for the first time since February 2016 against Manchester City, a match in which all five goals were also scored by five different players. Mixture.
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) January 8, 2022
18:48 , Matt Verri
59 mins: Baker and Vale on, Pulisic and Christensen on.
Perfect evening for Tuchel so far. Get the match sorted early on, and now he gets to bring on some of the youngsters in the squad.
18:46 , Matt Verri
57 mins: Looks like there will some more changes from Chelsea now.
Young players will be desperate to get on now.
GOAL! Chelsea 5-0 Chesterfield | Hakim Ziyech 55'
18:44 , Matt Verri
Loach got a hand to it in the Chesterfield goal, but there’s too much power on it.
Low, hard... 5-0 Chelsea.
18:43 , Matt Verri
54 mins: Miller, brought on at half-time, brings down Pulisic and the referee points to the spot.
Defender slipped and then crawled into Pulisic... strange challenge, definite penalty.
18:40 , Matt Verri
51 mins: Pulisic cleaned out by Kerr but the referee plays the advantage. Think Chelsea might have preferred the free-kick.
Comes to nothing and Mandeville brings it forward to Chesterville. Decent break, but it breaks down.
18:38 , Matt Verri
49 mins: Very nearly 5-0!
Ziyech past two or three defenders, Loach does well to keep it out. Parried straight into the path of Havertz though... he really catches hold of it, Gunning blocks. He felt the full force of that one.
18:37 , Matt Verri
48 mins: Havertz’s first touch, out on the left. Sends it low into the box towards Werner but it’s easily cut out.
Oyeleke makes a good tackle to stop Pulisic bringing it forward for the Blues.
18:35 , Matt Verri
46 mins: A couple of changes for Chesterfield too - Miller and on Mandeville, for King and Khan.
Tshimanga very nearly played through for the visitors, but Sarr gets back well to clear the danger. Promising start.
18:34 , Matt Verri
So Havertz and Loftus-Cheek on, Lukaku and Kovacic off Chelsea at the break.
Back underway at Stamford Bridge!
18:32 , Matt Verri
Players back out for the second-half, looks like there will be a couple of changes for the Blues.
Havertz and Loftus-Cheek getting some final instructions. Not sure that helps Chesterfield’s cause very much!
Job done in the first-half
18:29 , Matt Verri
18:25 , Matt Verri
It’s been as you’d expect.
Chelsea with 70% of possession and 15 shots in that opening 45 minutes, 8 of which were on target.
Chesterfield managed a couple of shots. They’ll be attacking the end with their supporters behind in the second-half... how they’d love a goal.
James Robson’s thoughts...
18:20 , Matt Verri
Well Tuchel could not have asked for any more from that half. There will be no giant-killing, no scares. The job is done.
Expect to see plenty of changes in the second half, if not at the break.
18:18 , Matt Verri
Chelsea 4-0 Chesterfield
Exactly what Thomas Tuchel would have hoped for.
Chelsea utterly dominant from start to finish in the first-half, and they have the goals to show for it. Werner, Hudson-Odoi, Lukaku and Christensen all on the scoresheet.
How many do the Blues want this evening?
18:16 , Matt Verri
45 mins: Again Chelsea come forward, Hudson-Odoi having a very enjoyable evening on the left wing.
Cuts inside and looks to get the shot away, but it’s quickly blocked. A minute of added time to be played.
James Robson’s thoughts...
18:14 , Matt Verri
This has been a wonderful half for Hall. He’s had a big part to play in two goals, also denied Chesterfield their best chance and has looked full of confidence.
He is very highly thought of at Chelsea and this will only enhance his reputation. For all of that, it should be remembered that this is non-league opposition. Whether he is ready to walk straight into the first team as cover for Chilwell, is another matter entirely.
But what a future he has.
18:14 , Matt Verri
43 mins: Kovacic tries to find room on the edge of the box for a shot, but he’s crowded out.
Plays it wide to Ziyech and he sends a left-footed strike at goal first-time, and it’s comfortably saved. No sign of Chelsea slowing down.
18:13 , Matt Verri
41 mins: You’d imagine we might see a few changes at half-time, with Tuchel able to rest players... this one is well and truly done.
Ruthless team selection, ruthless performance so far.
GOAL! Chelsea 4-0 Chesterfield | Andreas Christensen 39'
18:11 , Matt Verri
CHELSEA MAKE IT FOUR!
Kovacic wins a corner for his side after more good work, and Chelsea take it short again.
Hall has so much space on the edge of the box and curls one at goal... saved, but straight back out into danger. Christensen is following in and he loops a header over the goalkeeper.
18:08 , Matt Verri
37 mins: Chesterfield fans getting a lot of joy out of Werner or Lukaku losing the ball, wild cheers every time that happens.
They’re determined to enjoy their day out, regardless of the result on the pitch.
18:07 , Matt Verri
36 mins: It takes about three Chesterfield defenders to stop Lukaku, but eventually they do.
Ziyech then brings it inside and thinks he’s won a free-kick. He hasn’t. Not enough contact there... or any.
18:05 , Matt Verri
34 mins: Chesterfield put a long-throw into the box.
Drops to Oyeleke 20 yards out who controls well and quickly gets a shot away, but it’s sliced wide of the far post.
18:03 , Matt Verri
32 mins: Lukaku again... Lukaku wide again.
He’s getting plenty of chances in the box but that left foot hasn’t quite found top form yet. Chesterfield won’t want to give him many more chances though.
18:02 , Matt Verri
31 mins: Corner Chelsea and again Chesterfield don’t defend it very well.
Lukaku peels off towards the penalty spot and gets the volley away at goal... wide. Decent chance that, had a lot of space.
18:01 , Matt Verri
30 mins: King joins Saul in the book, as he goes in late on Hudson-Odoi. Can file that under ‘frustrated challenge’.
Hudson-Odoi is back up and running at him again... Chesterfield man can’t afford another hack. Kellerman gets back well to help his teammate out.
17:59 , Matt Verri
28 mins: Kellerman’s eyes light up as the ball gets played in behind for him to run onto, but Hall is quick enough to get back and cut out the danger.
Kovacic tries to play it through to Lukaku, but doesn’t get enough on the pass.
17:58 , Matt Verri
27 mins: Kovacic tries to play a one-two with Saul but he’s muscled out of it.
Chesterfield bring it forward down the right, but Hall is up to the task again and he wins it back. Very confident start.
17:56 , Matt Verri
24 mins: Breathless from Chelsea early on, they’ve been right at it from the start.
Do Chesterfield keep trying to get bodies forward on the break, and sit back a bit more and stop a real hammering?
James Robson’s thoughts
17:53 , Matt Verri
This is brutal for Chesterfield, but it gives Tuchel the chance to make a host of changes in the second half. He is being justified in his decision to name such a strong team. They are getting the job done early.
They are out of sight already. It is a case of how many they can get before half time.
GOAL! Chelsea 3-0 Chesterfield | Romelu Lukaku 20'
17:52 , Matt Verri
NO UPSET TODAY!
Lewis Hall loses it but he presses well and he wins it straight back, after King makes a complete mess of things.
Hall plays it low into the box, and Lukaku is there to turn it home from close range. Far too easy.
GOAL! Chelsea 2-0 Chesterfield | Callum Hudson-Odoi 18'
17:50 , Matt Verri
Sensational from Hudson-Odoi. Has space on the left and he just brings it inside under no real pressure.
Curls an effort and it’s right into the bottom corner of the net. Wonderful finish.
17:47 , Matt Verri
15 mins: Hudson-Odoi gives away the foul, after Chesterfield are once again composed on the ball.
They’ve obviously conceded early on, but there’s been plenty to be encouraged by from the visitors early on.
Chelsea do look in ruthless mood though...
17:44 , Matt Verri
13 mins: Kerr with a huge challenge on Kovacic to stop Chelsea breaking away.
Came after Chesterfield very nearly got in from a free-kick, but the Blues just about got back to see out the danger.
Visitors certainly offering something in attack.
17:43 , Matt Verri
11 mins: GREAT SAVE!
Ziyech goes on the outside this time and lets fly with his right-foot, but Loach gets a strong hand on it.
Werner wasn’t too far away from having another tap-in into an empty net.
17:41 , Matt Verri
10 mins: Chesterfield win their first corner of the match.
Whipped towards the near post and they do get the first touch, but it bobbles out for a goal-kick.
James Robson’s thoughts...
17:40 , Matt Verri
This is team is a statement from Tuchel. It could be argued that with depth of Chelsea’s squad it is almost impossible to name a weak side - but he certainly could have fielded more youth players against non-league Chesterfield.
It says to me that he knows how important it is that he delivers more silverware this season, with one trophy perhaps not enough.
With the title almost certainly out of reach now, he needs to make the most of the cup competitions.
17:39 , Matt Verri
8 mins: Chelsea rampant early on... Lukaku has a shot blocked when it looked like he was going to double the lead.
Wild challenge from Saul, free-kick and a yellow card. Completely unnecessary from him.
GOAL! Chelsea 1-0 Chesterfield | Timo Werner 6'
17:37 , Matt Verri
IT DIDN’T TAKE LONG!
Chesterfield have their brightest moment of the match in attack, but Chelsea win it back and Kovacic drives forward into the space.
They can’t get near him, and he lays it out wide to Ziyech. His shot is saved, but the rebound falls to Werner for a tap-in. Just about onside.
17:36 , Matt Verri
4 mins: Strong from Saul in midfield to win it back and he’s then really calm under pressure to turn out of trouble.
He’s got better and better in recent weeks, confidence visibly growing.
17:34 , Matt Verri
2 mins: Hudson-Odoi gets forward and lays it off to Kovacic who has a go... blocked, and behind for a corner. Can’t give Kovacic time on the edge of the box, just ask Liverpool.
Well-worked corner, but Lukaku blazes over the bar.
Chelsea lining up with a back-three, with Lewis Hall on the left, Sarr in the middle and Christensen right. Hudson-Odoi at left wing-back.
17:33 , Matt Verri
1 min: Chesterfield win a throw-in, and they decide they’ll take it long and get it straight into the box.
Kellerman wins the flick on, but it runs through to Bettinelli. First touch in a Chelsea shirt.
17:31 , Matt Verri
Chesterfield get us up and running... let’s hope for an FA Cup thriller!
17:29 , Matt Verri
Here come the players!
Kovacic the Chelsea captain tonight, leading his team out. Great atmosphere at the ground as the teams walk onto the pitch.
17:25 , Matt Verri
About five minutes until kick-off. Lots of away fans have been the trip to Stamford Bridge as you’d expect, a match to remember for them.
Tuchel on debutants
17:18 , Matt Verri
Marcus Bettinelli and Lewis Hall, who is just 17-years-old, make their Chelsea debuts tonight - here’s what the manager has had to say on them.
“Marcus deserves it, is desperate to make his first game & get the feeling of being on the pitch,” Tuchel said.
“He trains very well and fulfils his role very good.
“Lewis (is) very young and good in training and hopefully he can show it today.”
17:15 , Matt Verri
Eight Premier League sides have been in action so far this weekend. Brighton are currently leading in extra-time against West Brom, while Burnley, Watford and Newcastle are the top-flight teams already out.
Chelsea will not want to be added to that list, and a defeat to Chesterfield would be one of the biggest shocks in the competition’s long history.
Strong FA Cup record...
17:08 , Matt Verri
Chelsea have been in four of the last FA Cup finals.
They’ve lost three of them though, mos recently to Leicester last season, while the season before it was Arsenal who got the better of them in the final.
It was a happier time in 2018 though, as the Blues lifted the trophy after beating United. The year before? Another defeat to Arsenal.
Chelsea will certainly be eyeing another deep run.
16:57 , Matt Verri
— Chesterfield FC (@ChesterfieldFC) January 8, 2022
16:48 , Matt Verri
Busy evening of FA Cup action...
As well as the match at Stamford Bridge, Everton travel to Hull while Southampton are away to Swansea.
Birmingham host Plymouth, and Bournemouth face a trip to Yeovil.
It looks like we could have our first real shock of the weekend... Newcastle a couple of minutes away from being dumped out by Cambridge.
Big day for these two...
16:41 , Matt Verri
16:37 , Matt Verri
So Tuchel is true to his word, and does indeed go with a strong-looking side this evening.
Lukaku, Werner, Pulisic, Hudson-Odoi, Ziyech... they all start. Plenty of attacking talent on the pitch.
16:34 , Matt Verri
Starting XI: Loach, Kerr, Gunning, Croll, King, Weston, Oyeleke, Whittle, Khan, Kellermann, Tshimanga
Subs: Minter, Miller, Maguire, Asante, Mandeville, McCourt, Tyson, Grimes, Payne
16:31 , Matt Verri
Starting XI: Bettinelli, Hudson-Odoi, Christensen, Sarr, Hall, Ziyech, Kovacic, Saul, Pulisic, Lukaku, Werner
Subs: Kepa, Simons, Baker, Barkley, Jorginho, Loftus-Cheek, Webster, Havertz, Vale
Visitors having a look at the pitch...
16:24 , Matt Verri
Chesterfield players are out on the pitch, having a look at the surface.
Team news to come in about five minutes.
16:14 , Matt Verri
The visitors this evening have lost just one match all season in the National League, and they’re well on track for promotion as things stand.
Chesterfield have conceded just 16 goals in 20 league matches this campaign, so expect Chelsea to have to work hard for their goals.
They’ve beaten Curzon, Southend and Salford to get here... can they produce a famous upset?
16:06 , Matt Verri
Just under 25 minutes to go until we get team news from Stamford Bridge.
We saw Man City last night go nearly full-strength against Swindon... will Chelsea do something similar?
All to be revealed...
Visitors have arrived...
15:53 , Matt Verri
— Chesterfield FC (@ChesterfieldFC) January 8, 2022
Tuchel: Chelsea cannot be arrogant
15:43 , Matt Verri
The Chelsea boss was keen to point out in his press-conference that his team will not be taking Chesterfield lightly.
“We can lose any game in football,” Tuchel said.
“That’s why the game is so popular. You will never hear me say we can’t lose before a game. This would be hugely arrogant.
“This is not the attitude with which we want to approach the game tomorrow. Of course, we are favourites.
“[It is] the opposite to Germany where we would switch the home advantage to the lower team. We have the advantage of no travel and playing in front of our spectators in our home stadium.
“Yes, we are the huge favourites. We want to win and we demand it from ourselves. Still, we respect the game and the opponent. You can demand it from yourself but if you think it through, you need a performance to deliver.”
15:34 , Matt Verri
The magic of the FA Cup is one of the most tired old clichés in the game and, as interesting as it would be to see a surprise sprung, Chelsea couldn’t be stronger favourites.
With Tuchel promising a strong side and Chelsea looking to build some momentum after a stumbling December, a comfortable home victory is to be expected.
Chelsea to win 3-0.
Chelsea team news
15:24 , Matt Verri
It seems reasonable to expect the likes of Harvey Vale, Xavier Mbuyamba and Lewis Hall to potentially featured at some point, but Thomas Tuchel insists he will play a strong side.
Thiago Silva and N’Golo Kante are out after becoming the latest Blues players to test positive for Covid but Andreas Christensen should be available, while Timo Werner will likely start having been short on game time.
“Then we will find a strong line-up and show all the respect to the team and club of Chesterfield,” Tuchel said. “It is the FA Cup and if we want to go to the next round we have to win this match. Nothing else.”
Chelsea predicted XI: Bettinelli; Azpilicueta, Christensen, Sarr; Hudson-Odoi, Barkley, Loftus-Cheek, Saul; Werner, Lukaku, Ziyech.
How to watch Chelsea vs Chesterfield
15:15 , Matt Verri
TV channel: Today’s game will be broadcast on BBC One (red button).
Live stream: Supporters will be able to watch the game either through the BBC iPlayer (free with subscription) or the BBC Sport website.
Or follow all the action with our live blog right here!
15:05 , Matt Verri
Hello and welcome to Standard Sport’s LIVE coverage as Chelsea host Chesterfield in the third-round of the FA Cup.
Thomas Tuchel’s side come into it off the back of an impressive win over Tottenham in the Carabao Cup in midweek, while non-league Chesterfield will be dreaming of a huge upset this evening.
With our man James Robson at Stamford Bridge, we’ll have all the latest updates, build-up and team news ahead of kick-off, which comes at 5:30pm GMT. Stay tuned!