Reflecting on our 2-0 win at Hull City on Saturday, Petr Cech, who broke Peter Bonetti’s all-time club record for clean sheets, felt Eden Hazard’s opening goal midway through the second half proved to be the turning point.
The Belgian produced a moment of real quality just before the hour mark to break the deadlock at the KC Stadium, picking up an Ashley Cole flick, drifting past a couple of challenges and firing into the bottom corner.
The significance of the strike, Hazard’s ninth Premier League goal of the season, couldn’t be understated, particularly with Steve Bruce’s side, up until that point, proving difficult to break down, as Cech explained.
‘It looked easy in the end but we had some difficulties in the first half,’ said the Blues goalkeeper.
‘It was hard to open them up and then when the opportunities came, [Alan] McGregor made two great saves to keep the scores level. The first goal changed everything because they opened up a little bit and we managed to get more on the counter attack and, in the end, Fernando finished it off.
‘It’s been a while since we played first in the early game and we could put pressure on the other teams, so we wanted to take advantage of that. We did our job and won the game, it wasn’t easy because they did well for 60 minutes.
‘It’s a tough place to go; they beat Liverpool at home and almost beat Manchester United, they play good games at home. To go away with a 2-0 victory and three points is a real pleasure.’
Hazard, as has been the case so often of late, was a constant threat in the final third, and his influence continues to grow with every game.
Cech, though, believes the collective efforts of his team-mates allow the Belgian to flourish.
‘You need every individual to play for the team as well as using their own quality to decide games,’ he said.
‘We have so much talent in the squad these things happen, if you work as a unit and a team these players can make the difference. Eden proved the difference with the first goal and then Fernando finished it off.’