Newcastle United thrashed an abject Chelsea side 3-0 in their final game of the Premier League campaign on Sunday, which saw the Blues fail to qualify for next season's Champions League.
Newcastle took the lead midway through the first half, as Dwight Gayle bundled home from close range. The Magpies doubled their lead in the second half via a neat finish from Ayoze Pérez, who netted again minutes later after Chelsea switched off at a set piece. The Blues offered little in the way of a fightback, as the home side powered past them with precision.
The visitors started brightly, as they looked to use striker Olivier Giroud as a battering ram to break down Newcastle's solid defence. The Magpies had the first chance of the match, as Jonjo Shelvey rattled a swerving effort at Thibaut Courtois from thirty yards. The Belgian beanpole was drawn into action again moments later, palming Mohamed Diamé's effort wide.
As the first half approached the midway point, N'Golo Kanté nearly turned the ball into his own net - after he got a toe on the end of a Matt Ritchie cross following a flowing move from Rafael Benítez's side. Courtois made a fine stop, sparing his teammate's blushes, and then saw a powerful effort from Diame fly inches past his far post.
Then hosts were rewarded for their early dominance, and took the lead in the 22nd minute. Ritchie bent a delicious ball into the penalty area, which Daryl Murphy mishit and scooped into the air towards goal. Courtois managed to scoop the ball away from goal, but Gayle was on hand to tap home from close range.
The Magpies were rampant, and Shelvey should have doubled his side's lead soon after, but his effort spiralled wide of goal after he showed excellent footwork to slip into the Chelsea box with ease. Courtois was forced into another save shortly after - hurling himself to his left side to tip away a fierce, driven effort from Gayle.
As half time approached, Chelsea had still not managed to register a single attempt on goal. Antonio Conte's side made vain efforts to break into the opposition penalty area, but their static forward play was all too easily broken up by Newcastle's diligent defensive work. The Blues went in at half time looking dejected, while the travelling fans were in sombre spirits.
The hosts picked up where they left off in the second half, with Courtois forced into a save from Murphy whose bending effort caught out the Chelsea back line. The visitors continued to look frustrated, with a series of misplaced passes provoking mocking jeers from the home fans.
Chelsea had their first chance of the match in the 50th minute, as Giroud's deft flick almost lobbed
Newcastle doubled their lead in the 58th minute. Tiémoué Bakayoko cleared the ball out of the Chelsea area straight to Jonjo Shelvey, whose rasping effort from the edge of the area was diverted past a helpless Courtois by
It's becoming a bit of a damp ending for Conte's reign, 3-0 now...— 90min (@90min_Football) 13 May 2018
Chelsea team: Courtois; Azpilicueta, Christensen, Cahill (c); Moses, Barkley, Kante, Bakayoko, Emerson; Hazard, Giroud.— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) 13 May 2018
Subs: Caballero, Rudiger, Alonso, Fabregas, Willian, Pedro, Morata. #NEWCHE pic.twitter.com/WMXcsEQLBm