Chelsea’s chase for a top-four Premier League spot gathered pace as Cesc Fabregas scored a landmark goal to deepen Swansea’s relegation concerns.
Fabregas struck in the fourth minute on a wet evening in south Wales – his 50th Premier League goal and 15th for Chelsea after scoring 35 for former club Arsenal.
Swansea had their opportunities, particularly in the second half, to claim some rewards, but the 1-0 defeat means it is now six games without a win for Carlos Carvalhal’s side.
There is also little breathing space for Swansea now in the fight for top-flight safety as Southampton’s victory against Bournemouth reduces their advantage to the relegation zone to one point.
Blues boss Antonio Conte patrolled the technical area like a caged tiger throughout and it was easy to see why with so much at stake.
Liverpool’s goalless draw at home to Stoke earlier in the day had slightly opened the door to Chelsea as far as qualifying for next season’s Champions League was concerned.
A nine-point gap at kick-off was reduced to six, with Chelsea – who are two points adrift of fourth-placed Tottenham – having a game in hand over their Merseyside rivals.
Intriguingly, Chelsea and Liverpool meet at Stamford Bridge next weekend, when the pressure could really be applied on Jürgen Klopp’s side.