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BATSHUAYI HELPS BLUES EDGE STUBBORN WESTBROM 1-0 TO CLINCH TITLE 2 GAMES BEFORE FINAL MATCH DAY

Antonio Conte has successfully led the blues to a Premier League title on his first season.

The Blues edged a stubborn and defensive Westbrom side 1-0 at the Hawthorns on Friday night to secure a fifth title in ten years.

Tony Pulis’ men had frustrated Chelsea for 82 minutes before Batshuayi forced the ball over the line with a sliding shot to give Chelsea an insurmountable 10-point lead over Tottenham atop the table.

Chelsea only needed three points from their final three games to clinch the championship, but manager Antonio Conte wanted to secure the trophy at the earliest opportunity and Batshuayi was an unlikely hero to seal the Blues fate at The Hawthorns.

Batshuayi was not even among the substitutes in Chelsea’s last game on Monday and is still waiting to make a Premier League start.

The Belgium striker, a £33 million signing from Marseille last summer, made his 18th league appearance off the bench and finally showed his poacher’s instinct, seven minutes later, with his second league goal to send Chelsea and Conte delirious.

After West Brom’s Salomon Rondon forced Chelsea keeper Thibaut Courtois to tip over his bar in the opening seconds, the game settled down into a sluggish first half.

Chelsea had 71 percent possession before the break and took 14 shots, but they only managed to put a single attempt on goal — a Cesar Azpilicueta shot from distance.

The nearest the visitors came to taking the lead in the first half came in the 32nd minute when Cesc Fabregas flashed a shot inches wide of the post.

But Chelsea came out of the dressing room with renewed intent, and Victor Moses promptly forced West Brom keeper Ben Foster to make a diving save to preserve the deadlock.

Fabregas, Hazard, Moses and Diego Costa all made tries on targets before substitute Batshuayi stroked in at the 82nd minutes.

After securing their sixth English title — fifth in the Premier League era — Chelsea will seek to complete a double in Conte’s first season by winning the FA Cup final against Arsenal on May 27.

 

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