Chelsea edged past Manchester City in a fiercely-contested FA Cup semi-final last season – with Mason Mount claiming a personal victory over City midfielder Fernandinho that must have been particularly satisfying.
The Blues booked their place in the final following a 1-0 win at Wembley Stadium, courtesy of a Hakim Ziyech strike.
As is typically the case when the two sides meet, it was a physical affair, with neither team wanting to give an inch against their rivals.
City’s ever-robust midfielder had clearly been instructed to keep close tabs on the young Chelsea playmaker.
However, Fernandinho stepped well beyond the bounds of the rules in the 17th minute when he stepped on the face of Mount after knocking him to the ground.
Video: Fernandinho steps on Mount’s face following rugged challenge
The act went unpunished by match officials, something for which the Brazilian should have considered himself lucky.
That fortunate escape, though, didn’t alter Fernandinho’s game plan one bit as he thundered into a full-blooded tackle on the England international barely 10 minutes later.
On this occasion, Mount skillfully managed to elude the City’s man’s lunge – with Fernandinho again not penalised for what many might have deemed reckless conduct.
To his great credit, Mount refused be distracted by the harsh treatment he was receiving or the limited protection he was being offered by referee Mike Dean.
Instead, the Chelsea player exacted his revenge in glorious fashion during the second period.
Seemingly confident that he could simply muscle Mount off the ball, Fernandinho looked to bully the youngster out of possession on the left touchline.
Having endured plenty of this sort of tactic in the first half, Mount was ready.
Fernandinho was left red-faced as his opponent skipped away from his grasp with ease, after skillfully slipping the ball between his legs.
It was a delightful piece of play from Mount, made all the more special by the fact that few have managed to trick the veteran midfield enforcer so completely throughout his career.
You can check out Mount’s moment of triumph below.
Video: Mason Mount embarrasses Fernandinho with sensational piece of skill during FA Cup semi-final
Although Chelsea would ultimately lose to Leicester in the FA Cup final, Thomas Tuchel’s men did get their hands on an even more prestigious prize when they defeated Man City by the same 1-0 scoreline to lift the Champions League back in May.
The two sides meet again this weekend in the Premier League with the Blues hopeful of a similar result to reduce City’s advantage at the top of the table.
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While 36-year-old Fernandinho is now surely nearing the end of his Man City career with his current deal set to expire in the summer, Mount – who turns 23 today – is still firing on all cylinders for Chelsea.
He played every minute of Chelsea’s seven Premier League matches in December, scoring four goals and assisting three, form which earned him a Player of the Month nomination.
Still relatively early in his career, Mount looks set to provide fans with plenty of magical moments in the years to come.
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