Chelsea’s winning run under Thomas Tuchel continued with a narrow victory over Barnsley to set up an FA Cup quarter-final with Sheffield United.

Championship side Barnsley were the better team in the first half with Kepa Arrizabalaga blocking Callum Brittain’s attempt at point-blank range.

Chelsea, who made 10 changes, got the breakthrough when Tammy Abraham tapped home after Reece James’ pass.

Abraham just held his run to ensure he was onside to finish from close range.

Chelsea are now unbeaten in five games since Tuchel took charge in January and will entertain Sheffield United in the sixth round on the weekend of 20-21 March.

Chelsea were languishing in ninth in the Premier League when Tuchel took charge but are now one point off the top four and two wins from a fourth FA Cup final in five seasons.

This was a chance for Tuchel to take a first close look at his fringe players but they struggled to impress – and failed to register an attempt on target during a disjointed first half.

Kepa, demoted by previous boss Frank Lampard in favour of Edouard Mendy, kept his side on level terms with a fine save to keep out Brittain, who should have scored after Alex Mowatt’s cross was flicked into his path.

In addition to Kepa, Emerson Palmieri, Kurt Zouma and 19-year-old midfielder Billy Gilmour were also appearing for the first time under Tuchel, while Christian Pulisic and N’Golo Kante made first starts since the German came in.

Brittain went close again after firing through a sea of legs, while Chelsea’s only meaningful first-half attack ended up with Pulisic sending Callum Hudson-Odoi’s cross wide.

The winning goal came from a lovely move with Gilmour at its heart. The ball eventually came to James who squared to Abraham for his 12th goal of the season.

Even then Chelsea had to endure a nervous ending against an impressive Barnsley side full of energy.

Substitute Michael Sollbauer went close to equalising only for Abraham to clear his goal bound attempt as Chelsea lived dangerously.

Coming from this loss, Barnsley return to Championship action away at Brentford on Sunday (13:00 GMT), while winners Chelsea host Newcastle United in the Premier League on Monday (20:00).

Credit: BBC Sport

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