Watch: Amid off-field crisis, Chelsea rally to advance in FA Cup
Facing a crisis off the pitch, Chelsea were in trouble on Wednesday when the side fell behind not once but twice against a lower league opponent in the FA Cup.
Eventually, the most expensive player of the era Roman Abramovich bailed out Chelsea.
Romelu Lukaku completed the comeback with a 78th-minute winner as the European champions beat Luton 3-2 away to reach the quarter-finals.
Other teams to progress from the fifth round were Liverpool, who beat Norwich 2-1, and Southampton, who won 3-1 against West Ham, in Premier League matches.
Chelsea players entered the pitch at Kenilworth Road just an hour after Abramovich made his stunning announcement that he was looking to sell the London club after 19 years in control, as he faces the threat of financial sanctions against the Russians following the invasion of Ukraine. .
“You’re sold in the morning,” was one of the chants sung by Luton fans, who were overjoyed after their side took the lead for the first time through Reece Burke’s second-minute header.
Saul Niguez equalized in the 27th minute, only for Luton to regain the lead in the 40th when Harry Cornick broke free from the Chelsea defense to finish home.
Timo Werner grabbed Chelsea’s second equalizer in the 68th minute, before crossing for Lukaku to slot in with 12 minutes left.
“There was noise around the club today, of course, so it was not so easy to concentrate,” said Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel, “but we did very well I think.”
“In the very short term,” added Tuchel, “for us as a team, staff and players, I hope (it won’t change) too much. Maybe it won’t even change anything. But the situation is now there and a great situation.
Back in action four days after beating Chelsea in the League Cup final, Liverpool stayed on course for an unlikely quadruple of trophies with a second win over Norwich in 11 days.
Jurgen Klopp fielded a heavily rotated side with 10 changes and one of them, Takumi Minamino, scored both goals – in the 27th and 39th minutes.
Liverpool reached the FA Cup quarter-finals for the first time under Klopp, whose side are second in the Premier League and on course to qualify for the Champions League quarter-finals.
Norwich, who have lost to Liverpool twice in the league – including last month – and in the League Cup, scored through Lukas Rupp in the 76th.
Southampton also made substitutions – nine in total – against West Ham but still managed, substitute Armando Broja scoring a goal and securing a penalty which was sent in by James Ward-Prowse.
Manchester City, Crystal Palace and second-tier Middlesbrough advanced on Tuesday, while Everton host non-League side Boreham Wood on Thursday.