Olivier Giroud created Champions League history by netting four in Chelsea’s 4-0 win over Sevilla as the Blues secured top spot in Group E.
Both sides came into the game having already qualified for the knockout rounds, but with top spot to be decided, it was Chelsea who started the brightest, and they quickly got their reward in just the eighth minute, Kai Havertz driving the ball forward from midfield before slipping in Olivier Giroud, the Frenchman taking a touch before curling the ball past Alfonso Pastor.
Chelsea continued to dominate throughout the first half, and just as Sevilla were showing signs of potentially getting back into the game, the Blues doubled their lead with Giroud excellently netting his second. Midfielder Mateo Kovacic slipped a pass into the 34-year-old, who calmly lifted his shot into the back of the net after drawing the ‘keeper out.
The Frenchman’s third in the 74th minute was a goal much more typical of the centre-forward, rising between two defenders to nod home N’Golo Kante’s cross to complete his perfect hat-trick.
Giroud would complete his quadruple from the penalty spot, sending the ‘keeper the wrong way after being bundled over by Sergi Gomez.
Olivier Giroud's game by numbers against Sevilla:
17 total duels contested (most)
9 total aerial duels (most)
5 shots (most)
4 shots on target (most)
4 goals (most)
3 fouls won (most)
Going home with the match ball. pic.twitter.com/vHkN0rghRV
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) December 2, 2020
Giroud’s four-goal haul saw him become the oldest player to achieve the feat since the rebranding of the Champions League, and speaking afterwards, Frank Lampard was understandably delighted with his striker’s excellent showing.
“Four goals at this level and the quality of the goals, individual aspects from Olivier [Giroud] and team aspects in the first half, from back to front the team were great, amazing solo performance from Olivier,” Lampard told BT Sport.
“Delighted with him, delighted with the team. This is a difficult place to come. There were moments in the first half where it was tough and we dealt with it.
“Olivier is reliable, full stop. Not just for us but his international goals for France, he’s up there with great French individuals, he’s got great statistics. I’m not too bothered about that in a way but I am bothered about what he gives us on the pitch. There couldn’t be a team-mate there that the players are happier for because of the way Olivier is around the training pitch and in the games.”
Much has been written about Giroud’s future at Chelsea in recent weeks amid competition from Timo Werner and Tammy Abraham, though Lampard gave nothing away when asked about his chances of starting the league game against Leeds on Saturday evening.
“We’ll have to see – it’s a tight turnaround but it’s four goals in a game. It’s not just his performance but when you play him and utilise his strengths and his speed, there’s a real balance in the rest of the team.”