Lampard seals FA Cup triumph as Hiddink signs off in style (Roundup)
By Ben James May 30, 2009, 16:42 GMT
London - Frank Lampard scored the winner as Chelsea beat Everton 2-1 on Saturday to win the FA Cup for the fifth time in their history.
Louis Saha fired Everton ahead after 25 seconds but Didier Drogba headed the equalizer on 21 minutes and Lampard slammed in the winner with his left-foot 18 minutes from time.
It is the second time in three years that Chelsea have won the Cup, while it gave outgoing coach Guus Hiddink the perfect send-off.
'Winning in the mecca of world football (Wembley Stadium), the FA Cup, that's something I cannot believe.'
Chelsea captain John Terry, who said he had begged Hiddink to stay, was proud to have led the side to victory.
'It's been two years since we've won a trophy and that's too long. It's great to get it back,' Terry said.
Match-winner Lampard hailed Chelsea's fighting spirit.
'We went 1-0 down within a minute or so but showed a lot of character to come back,' he said.
'After getting the first we dominated the game and I'm just pleased to get the goal that wins the game.
'Guus has been amazing and he's a great man, we've loved working with him and he deserves this victory.'
The match began in the most dramatic fashion as Everton scored the fastest goal in FA Cup finals history.
John Obi Mikel could only head a cross weakly in the direction of Saha and the former Manchester United and Fulham striker slashed a left-foot shot past Petr Cech.
Chelsea had barely been in the match in the first 20 minutes but totally against the run of play, they were level.
Florent Malouda was given too much time on the left and his cross picked out Drogba, who headed powerfully past Tim Howard.
The scores stayed level until half-time and Nicolas Anelka then lifted a lob narrowly over the bar for Chelsea.
Tim Cahill tested Cech from distance and Saha headed over but 18 minutes from time, Lampard was allowed a second bite at the cherry and the midfielder found the corner of the Everton net.
Malouda thought he had scored when he smashed a long-range effort onto the bar before bouncing down.
The Frenchman thought the ball had bounced over the line - and television replays suggested it had - but the referee waved play on.
In the end, though, it did not matter and Chelsea hung on to win the trophy for the third time in nine seasons.
Hiddink, who took over at Chelsea in February, is due to return to his role as Russia manager.
Everton manager David Moyes, who also led his side to fifth in the league, said he had no complaints.
'I look back with a lot of pleasure in getting the team to the final,' he said.
'Chelsea were the better team on the day, I can't argue with that. Lampard is a big player who scored big goals and that's what he's done today. Our team has made progress year on year and we'll try to keep that going.'
Everton forward Tim Cahill was understandably disappointed to be on the losing side.
'It's been a great season, finishing fifth in the Premier League and reaching the final, but it leaves a bitter taste,' he said.
'But it's an experience I can take forward in the coming years. '