Mocked by Liverpool's supporters as having "no history", Chelsea continued to ransack the record books here yesterday in winning their fourth FA Cup in six seasons.
John Terry has been captain for all those triumphs – a record with one club – Ashley Cole now has seven winners' medals in all (the first three having come during his Arsenal days) and, most significantly of all on the day, Didier Drogba scored for the fourth time in a Cup final, three of those having been the winning goal.
Yesterday it was the one that the Ivorian drove past Jose Reina that put his side 2-0 ahead early in the second half after Ramires had opened the scoring in a poor first half. "Didier is my hero," his team-mate Frank Lampard said. "No striker I've seen scores as many important goals in finals and semi-finals."
Terry said: "At times this season people have slated us as too old, past it or not together but as a team we come together and unite when our backs are against the wall. We've done that superbly in the last 16 or 17 games."
That is the period during which Roberto Di Matteo, once a Wembley goalscorer himself, has been in charge since the dismissal of Andre Villas-Boas as manager. He has lost only two of those games, but he is still by no means sure of starting next season as manager and may need to win the Champions' League final against Bayern Munich in a fortnight's time to do so.
"AVB should get some credit for this win too," Di Matteo said, adding of his own future: "The boss [Roman Abramovich] will make the decision at the end of the season."
Liverpool played poorly for an hour of the contest, as their manager, Kenny Dalglish, admitted afterwards. "Chelsea are thoroughbreds and we have some relatively inexperienced youngsters," he said.
His side might have salvaged the game in the last few minutes when the substitute Andy Carroll felt his header had crossed the line. That talking point came just 10 days before goalline technology is set to be tried out in the Hampshire Senior Cup final.
Chelsea had benifited from a mistake in the semi-final here, when the goal given to Juan Mata clearly did not cross the line, but yesterday by common consent the officials could not be certain it had done so.
Dalglish said of the incident: "I haven't seen it but I thought at the time it was in. If the officials have got it right, I hope they get the credit they deserve."Reuse content