SIX minutes into the 140th FA Cup final, Thomas Tuchel cast a long, lingering look towards Brendan Rodgers, as if sizing him up. At that point, his Chelsea side were doing the same to Leicester. A couple of corners had amounted to nothing and Chelsea were feeling their way into the match but there was a sense that a template for the game was forming.

What was that look? The German has out-thought Pep Guardiola, Jose Mourinho, Zinedine Zidane and Diego Simeone in the months since he has taken over as Chelsea manager in late January but he has not had to engage his grey matter against the Northern Irishman thus far. Chelsea were beaten 2-0 by Leicester in the final throes of the Frank Lampard reign so perhaps it was admiration. Leicester, after all, stuck five past Manchester City at the start of the season; maybe Tuchel was trying to read Rodgers' mind for the secret recipe with a Champions League final to come against the Premier League champions at the end of the month. Or perhaps, he simply saw the future. In its most reductive form, Rodgers executed a gameplan in which Leicester absorbed most of the pressure before hitting Tuchel's side on the break but it was more nuanced than that – and, crucially, it was the kind of strategy he seemed unable to employ in big European games at Celtic. He won five finals during his time at Parkhead; now he has added one in England for his first major trophy down south. The win confirmed his evolution as a coach and, with Champions League qualification almost assured, vindicated his decision to leave Celtic for a club whose owners have shown ambition backed by a blueprint for success that has been sorely lacking at his former employers.

What wasn't part of Rodgers' plans for this match was an early injury to Jonny Evans but he might have been suspecting it. The Leicester centre-back had missed two matches with a heel injury and had been a significant doubt in the build-up. After 34 minutes, the gamble failed when Evans pulled up lame and as he was attended to by the Leicester physio he seemed to mouth 'it's away' in reference to his heel. It bore hallmarks to the FA Cup final Leicester contested in 1961, when they lost a defender to injury after just 18 minutes. Back then, there were no such thing as substitutes and they were forced to carry bloodied and bruised right-back Len Chalmers for an hour before he was forced to give up. Fortunately, for the game as a spectacle, times have changed. On came Marc Albrighton, one of the few remaining members of the Leicester side that won the Premier League in 2016, while Timothy Castagne, a full-back by trade, shuffled into the back three.

That was one of the main talking points of the half and spoke to the nature of the tight tactical battle that unfolded over the first 45 minutes.

The action could be summarised thus: Mason Mount should have done better when he sucked in Caglar Soyuncu and then drove at the Leicester defence but hooked his left-footed shot wide. Then Timo Werner should have done better a minute before half-time after finding himself in green space but his low, grass-cutting drive nicked off Wesley Fofana's thigh and was deflected wide.

Before kick off, Rodgers had said: “What’s important is you’re not a tourist, [here] to take photographs of a great occasion, we’re here to win.”

They certainly contributed in the first half but their threat in attacking areas was limited to two opportunities for Jamie Vardy, both spurned and both firmly in the half-chance category.

It continued along a similar vein in the second period but Leicester were much more on the front foot, now. They took the lead in spectacular style after 63 minutes when Youri Tielemans unleashed a drive from 25-yards which was too high for Kepa Arrizbalaga's outstretched right glove for one of the great FA Cup final goals.

He revealed afterwards that he had received a text message in the morning urging him to hit the top corner. He duly obliged.

Chelsea players, sporting a psychedelic new shirt, in homage to Op-Art, apparently an illusionary visual style, hoped for the intervention of another visual aid, the equally discombobulating VAR as they claimed Ayoze Perez had handled prior to the ball making its way to Tielemans. The reality was that the ball had deflected off Perez's thigh on to his wrist and was therefore not an offence.

Chelsea laid siege to the Leicester goal, thereafter, seeking the equaliser that would have forced extra-time and it required a stunning, full-length save from Kasper Schmeichel – one that was evocative of those made by his father, Peter – to deny Mason Mount.

There was greater drama to come. Ben Chilwell, the Chelsea full-back who signed for the club from Leicester in the summer, scored what appeared to be an equaliser with two minutes left but VAR intervened this time to disallow the goal. It was clearly the right decision with Chilwell well advanced of the Leicester backline when he received Thiago Silva's forward pass.

And so, in a season when all talk has been about Manchester City's potential treble. Leicester City have completed a double of their own. Okay, it might have taken them since 2016 – and you've got to do it in the same season for it to be officially recognised as the double – but, having waited more than a century for one major trophy their fans will hardly split hairs over the five-year-delay for an FA Cup to add to their Premier League title.