Chelsea 1-1 Atletico Madrid: Blues finish second in Group C after draw
By Gerard Brand at Stamford Bridge
Last Updated: 06/12/17 7:58am
Chelsea surrendered top spot in Champions League Group C after a 1-1 draw with Atletico Madrid at Stamford Bridge.
The result, coupled with Roma's 1-0 win over Qarabag in Rome, meant Chelsea missed out on a favourable seed for the last 16, while Atletico dropped into the Europa League.
Atletico were ahead through Saul Niguez's header (56) at the far post from ex-Chelsea striker Fernando Torres' flick-on, but Stefan Savic's own goal (75) from Eden Hazard's cross-shot levelled things up.
Chelsea: Courtois (6), Christensen (6), Cahill (6), Azpilicueta (6), Zappacosta (6), Fabregas (7), Kante (6) Bakayoko (5), Hazard (7) Moses (7), Morata (6)
Subs: Pedro (6), Willian (5), Batshuayi (6)
Atletico Madrid: Oblak (8), Gimenez (6), Savic (6), Lucas (6), Luis (6), Koke (6), Thomas (7), Gabi (6), Saul (7), Torres (6), Griezmann (6)
Subs: Carraso (6), Correa (NA), Vietto (NA)
Man of the match: Jan Oblak
Willian missed a clear chance to win it late on, blazing over from 12 yards, and the draw for the last 16 of the Champions League will be at 11am on Monday, which you can follow live on Sky Sports' digital platforms.
If Liverpool beat Spartak Moscow on Wednesday night, Chelsea's potential opponents in the last 16 will be reduced to three teams: Barcelona, PSG or Besiktas.
Atletico, needing a win to have any chance of progressing to the last 16, came closest early on as Torres' deflected shot flew just over the bar, while at the other end Alvaro Morata curled inches wide after a superb turn 20 yards out.
Morata then forced a save out of Jan Oblak on the stretch from 10 yards, and the Slovenian goalkeeper was at his best to deny Davide Zappacosta with a world-class fingertip save from the defender's deflected shot.
For Chelsea, Zappacosta, Cahill and Bakayoko replaced Rudiger, Drinkwater and Alonso following the 3-1 win over Newcastle. For Atletico, Godin, Correa, and Gameiro were replaced by Savic, Lucas Hernandez and former Chelsea striker Torres.
Oblak denied Chelsea again twice in quick succession after the break, first from Andreas Christensen's unmarked header, and then from Morata's own header a moment later.
Former Chelsea defender Filipe Luis hit the post with a long-range effort, but Atleti were ahead on 56 minutes. An outswinging corner was flicked on by Torres at the near post, finding the unmarked Niguez a few yards out to head home past Thibaut Courtois.
Christensen then glanced a clear header wide from Cesc Fabregas' centre, but Chelsea found luck with 15 minutes to go as Hazard's fierce effort across goal was stabbed into the roof of the net by the foot of the unfortunate Savic.
It should have been 2-1 to the hosts a minute later, but Morata failed to convert having been put through one-on-one with Oblak by Fabregas, before sub Willian somehow blazed over from point-blank range from another Hazard centre.
There was still time for one more chance in injury time as sub Michy Batshuayi sprayed a fine effort inches wide of the far post as both sides piled forwards and left gaps in defence, but it ended all square in a result which helped neither side.
- Even though they have progressed, only once have Chelsea had fewer points in the current Champions League group stage format (since 2003/04) - 2012/13 when being eliminated from the competition.
- Chelsea have scored in 27 successive Champions League group stage home games - the last time they failed to score was in a 0-0 draw against Valencia in December 2007.
- The last time Atletico were knocked out of the Champions League group stage was in 2009/10 when they won the Europa League at the end of the season.
- Fernando Torres has been directly involved in eight goals in his 10 appearances against Chelsea in all competitions (7 goals, 1 assist).
Man of the match - Jan Oblak
Oblak is considered up there with the world's best, and he showed why at Stamford Bridge. The Slovenian made seven saves, the best coming from Zappacosta's deflected effort in the first half, a truly brilliant fingertip stop to the bottom-right corner.
He was unlucky for the goal, and dealt with aerial balls well, notably rushing out to intercept Fabregas' trademark deliveries from deep on several occasions. The 24-year-old deserves a return to Champions League football as soon as possible.
Antonio Conte: "When you play this competition, then you go through, you must be ready to face the best teams, in this case we know we could play against Barcelona, PSG or Besiktas.
"We must be ready, because this is the best tournament and for this, if we want to go through or be a protagonist in this tournament you must be ready to face every team. I think our opponent would not be happy to play against us."
Diego Simeone: "It doesn't hurt, because this is football. We've managed to get more points from the team which finished top of the group than the team which finished bottom.
"It is difficult to explain, but from now on we are just going to concentrate on what is coming, whether it be the Europa League, Copa del Rey or La Liga."
Chelsea now go to West Ham in the Premier League on Saturday at lunchtime, live on Sky Sports Premier League, while Atletico Madrid travel to Real Betis in La Liga on Sunday, live on Sky Sports Football at 3.15pm.