Chelsea overcome brave Leicester resistance

Chelsea 2:0 Leicester City

Chelsea v Leicester City, Sky Bet Premiership, 23 August 2014,

City were a match for one of Europe’s best sides for just over an hour at Stamford Bridge on Saturday, before goals from Costa and Hazard sealed a 2-0 win for Chelsea…

Nigel Pearson brought Hammond in for Drinkwater and Schlupp for Knockaert and, although this line-up could be described an understrength, City looked undaunted by this visit to the title favourites.
The early chances went to the home side, Oscar had a shot blocked by Morgan, and then Cahill had two efforts blocked by red shirts that were giving their hosts very little breathing space.
Schurrle then headed a Hazard cross over, before City broke upfield.

Chelsea v Leicester City, Sky Bet Premiership, 23 August 2014,
Mahrez saw a fierce shot beaten away by Courtois and then Schlupp had an effort deflected wide.
At the other end Costa had a curling shot blocked by Morgan, and City could be well pleased with their efforts as the half-time whistle heralded a goalless half.

Mourinho had apparently given his side something of a ‘pep-talk’ at the break and they appeared to have moved up a gear.
Oscar fired against the post, and then Ivanovic was denied by a superb Schmeichel save as City were stretched for the first time.
But they should have taken the lead five minutes later when a speedy breakaway set up Nugent in a one-on-one with keeper Courtois, but the Belgian keeper managed to block with his legs.
Chelsea v Leicester City, Sky Bet Premiership, 23 August 2014,
Schurrle then went close with a curler, before Schmeichel denied Ivanovic again this time tipping away a long-range shot.
City were still looking dangerous on the break but Courtois again saved from Nugent after last year’s leading scorer had been set up by Mahrez.
As play swung from one end of the field to the other Fabregas then forced another save from Schmeichel who tipped his attempted chip over the bar.
However, Chelsea began to turn the screw further and City’s resistance was broken in the 62nd minute.
In a busy penalty area Costa guided home from close range after Ivanovic’s low cross made it across the goalmouth.
Chelsea v Leicester City, Sky Bet Premiership, 23 August 2014,
City stuck to their task, and Pearson brought on Albrigthton and Taylor-Fletcher for Mahrez and Hammond, but Chelsea went further ahead in the 77th minute. Fabregas sending Hazard through for a run and shot beyond Schmeichel’s reach.

Schmeichel then made another fine save from Willian to keep the scoreline at respectable levels.

It was a predictable enough defeat against Chelsea’s Megastars, but City fans could take great pride in their side’s performance, which boded very well for the rest of the season.
Nigel Pearson told Sky Sports: “We are aware of the fact that when chances have come our way, it’s not quite happened for us. But the encouraging thing is that we are being creative. I think today we have put them under quite a bit of pressure and even when they started to take a bit of control in the second half, we still had our moments. There are positives to take from today, certainly.”


Chelsea: Courtois, Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta, Matic, Fabregas, Schurrle (Ramires 64), Oscar (Willian 70), Hazard, Costa (Drogba 79). Subs: Cech, Zouma, Luis, Mikel.
Leicester: Schmeichel, De Laet, Morgan, Moore, Konchesky, Mahrez (Albrighton 68), Hammond (Taylor-Fletcher 72), King, Schlupp, Nugent, Ulloa (Wood 84) Subs: Hamer, Hopper, Knockaert, Wasilewski.
Referee: Lee Mason. ATTENDANCE: 41,604.
All photos: Simon Kimber.

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