Chelsea boost European chances with 5-0 drubbing of West Ham


Why Pochettino and Gallagher are vital to Chelsea's progression next season

Mark Donaldson looks back on Chelsea's big win over London rivals West Ham in the Premier League.

Chelsea boosted their chances of European football next season, thumping West Ham 5-0 in the Premier League, with Cole Palmer, Conor Gallagher, Noni Madueke and Nicolas Jackson all getting on the scoresheet on Sunday.

The result moves Chelsea to seventh in the table, overtaking Manchester United, who play on Monday. The win puts Mauricio Pochettino's team within striking distance of qualification for the Europa League.

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The 21-year-old Palmer latched on to a loose ball after a Madueke cross in the 15th minute and shot into the far corner across West Ham goalkeeper Alphonse Areola. It was his 21st league goal in his first season for the club.

Captain Gallagher also took advantage of a loose ball in the area following a tackle on Madueke and lashed his chance home on the half hour with West Ham's defence in disarray.

Madueke turned from provider to scorer and back either side of half-time.

Cole Palmer opened the scoring for Chelsea against a woeful West Ham.
Chloe Knott - Danehouse/Getty Images

Six minutes after Gallagher's strike he steered home from close range after 39-year-old Brazil defender Thiago Silva nodded down a Mykhailo Mudryk corner straight to his feet.

Three minutes after the break he controlled a perfectly weighted upfield pass from Benoît Badiashile and squared it to Jackson to push home past the unprotected Areola.

Jackson was awarded his second after a VAR check showed he had stayed just onside when latching on to a another long pass upfield in the 80th minute, this time from Ecuador's Moisés Caicedo, and finishing with aplomb.

It is the first time since January that Mauricio Pochettino's Chelsea have won two league games in a row following a fine 2-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur in another derby only three days ago.

"After the victory against Tottenham and to come back again after a few days is very good," Pochettino told Sky Sports. "It was a brilliant game, it was amazing. They reacted in the right way. I was so happy how we competed on Thursday and we have talented players to create chances and score goals."

Chelsea also beat Everton 6-0 last month after a difficult first half of the season when they spurned chances and rarely looked in tune with each other.

"We need to keep this momentum and belief going," Pochettino added.

West Ham had their chances in an energetic game but were let down by a fragile defence. The ever-busy Jarrod Bowen hit the woodwork three times and Emerson fired over the bar early in the second half with only Djordje Petrovic to beat.

Petrovic then tipped over a fine free kick from James Ward-Prowse in the 55th minute.

But David Moyes's side are now without a win in six games in all competitions and were clearly out of sorts with rumours swirling about their coach's imminent departure.