Cesc Fabregas was the hero as Chelsea came from two goals down to beat 10-man Leicester City 4-2 in the EFL Cup at the King Power Stadium on Tuesday.
The Foxes had gone ahead twice with goals from Shinji Okazaki, but goals from Gary Cahill and Cesar Azpilicueta leveled the score to stretch it into extra time, before Fabregas’ extra time brace saw off the challenge.
Chelsea began dominating the play as Leicester played catch-up for especially during the opening exchanges.
Antonio Conte made several changes to the team that lost 2-1 at home to Liverpool over the weekend, with Asmir Begovic coming in place of Thibaut Courtois in goal, with Pedro and Mitchy Batshuayi also starting for the former Premier League champions.
It was the current Premier League champions who took the lead however, Shinji Okazaki getting on the scoresheet for the Foxes in the 17th minute.
With Chelsea looking to earn a reprieve by getting an equalizer, it was Leicester who doubled their lead, Okazaki again finding the back of the net, this time in the 34th minute.
Chelsea however got themselves back in the fray with an equalizer just before half time, Cahill leveling for the Blues.
Chelsea began the second half wanting to get back completely into the game, and it was exactly that which happened as Azpilicueta leveled to give the Blues respite.
Leicester began pressing to restore their lead however, as Danny Drinkwater and Jamie Vardy making serious efforts.
The Blues were however also relentless in their efforts to complete the comeback, with substitute Diego Costa forcing Ron Zieler, in goal for Leicester on the night to a fine string of saves.
And just shortly before the end of normal time, Marcin Wasilwski’s needless lunge on Costa meant he was shown the red card by the referee to reduce Leicester to 10 men, as the game proceeded into extra time.
The much-maligned Fabregas, who has barely got a look-in this season rose to the occasion as he brace just at the start of the first half of extra time within a space of two minutes ensured Chelsea would move to the next round of the competition at the expense of the Premier League champions.