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Why Hudson-Odoi’s display vs Nottingham Forest is a sign of good things to come

As the full-time whistle went, Callum Hudson-Odoi pulled his shirt over his face and rued a missed opportunity with the final kick of the game. Such reactions became an all too regular sight in the past few weeks as the teenager tried to rediscover his form.

This time, however, the anguished gesture came at the end of the 19-year-old’s finest performance since returning from the ruptured achilles sustained in April. He scored the opening goal and provided an assist of sorts for Ross Barkley in a rare home win for Frank Lampard’s team against Nottingham Forest.

Chelsea cruised into the next round of the FA Cup at the expense of Nottingham Forest, thanks to goals from Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ross Barkley.

Frank Lampard’s side opened the scoring inside the opening six minutes through their Man of the Match Hudson-Odoi, who was given too much space inside the penalty area before sending a left-footed strike inside the near post.

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Hudson-Odoi was terrific for Chelsea (Image credit: Getty)

Even after picking up wins against Arsenal and Tottenham, it was a tough few weeks for Chelsea throughout the Christmas period.

Sunday’s FA Cup tie offered Frank Lampard a chance to experiment with his line-up and a bit of a breather from the competitive Premier League but Chelsea’s much-changed side didn’t take the result for granted. The Blues were professional throughout and it was Lampard’s youngest players who were the difference-makers at Stamford Bridge, while squad players like Andreas Christensen and Ross Barkley also impressed.

He hasn’t always had a chance to prove it for the first-team this season but Callum Hudson-Odoi showed exactly why he’s one of England’s most highly-rated young players with a stunning performance on Sunday. Hudson-Odoi’s threat down the right side – along with Reece James – proved to be Chelsea’s best outlet throughout the game.

First up, he broke the deadlock after a trick to come inside from the left and then sent a low finish back into the bottom right corner. And it was almost a carbon copy for the second but his shot was directed to the bottom left corner this time. Although it was parried by Jordan Smith, Ross Barkley converted from close range.

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Ross Barkley (Image credit: Getty)

Hudson-Odoi completed the game with 5 key passes and a pass success percentage of 90%. He managed 8 successful duels and 6 successful dribbles. He also completed as many as 5 ball recoveries and was at the receiving end of 2 fouls. He scored one goal and teed up Chelsea’s second goal. [Courtesy: FotMob]

He hasn’t been a part of Chelsea’s senior side quite as much as some of their other academy graduates but it was a performance that showed exactly why the club tied him down to a new long-term contract at the start of the season.

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