Blues on top after canter

Posted Saturday, August 29, 2009 by PA

Chelsea moved to the top of the Barclays Premier League with a comfortable 3-0 win over new boys Burnley at Stamford Bridge.

Burnley, victors over Manchester United and Everton in their last two games, were no match for an exciting Chelsea side.

Goals from Nicolas Anelka, Michael Ballack and Ashley Cole ensured Chelsea retained their 100% record.

But for an inspired performance by Burnley goalkeeper Brian Jensen, the margin of victory would have been much greater.

It was a performance that captured Chelsea at their best under Carlo Ancelotti's attacking system.

Burnley clearly could not cope with it and at times Chelsea's play was fluid, fast, and exciting.

It was, at last, the brand of football that owner Roman Abramovich had been yearning for since he took charge.

Chelsea announced their intentions within three minutes when Anelka tested Jensen with a 20-yard shot in the third minute.

Moments later a mazy run by Ballack saw him fire a shot across the face of the goal as Burnley struggled to contain the Blues.

In the sixth minute, Chelsea wasted a great chance to take the lead when Anelka robbed Andre Bikey on the half-way line and sprinted towards goal.

But the France international's touch let him down and Jensen grabbed the ball at his feet as the Chelsea striker looked to go around him.

However, Chelsea escaped in the ninth minute when Tyrone Mears robbed Frank Lampard and sped into the penalty area.

Instead of shooting, the Burnley defender squared the ball to the unmarked Martin Paterson who looked certain to put the visitors ahead.

However, Paterson shot wide with the goal at his mercy.

It was a real let-off for Chelsea but they responded immediately with Lampard putting Anelka clean through on goal. However, Jensen was alert to the danger and claimed the ball at the Frenchman's feet.

In the 20th minute Ballack was foiled by a fine save from Jensen after Deco's pass had given the German a clear opportunity to put the home side ahead.

Jensen then saved from captain John Terry and Drogba, with three goals to his name already this season, curled a 20-yard effort around the post as the Blues increased the pressure.

Jensen pulled off another reflex save on the half-hour when Jose Bosingwa's cross was headed back to Lampard by Terry.

The England midfielder's volley was punched clear by an inspired Jensen.

Michael Essien, handed the holding role in front of the defence instead of John Mikel Obi, was beginning to move forward with increasing regularity as the half wore on.

But the Ghanaian international is not renowned for his shooting and he did not show any signs of improvement when he tried his luck from 30 yards.

Essien had a clear sight of the target but his shot only troubled the fans in the second tier of the Shed end.

A superb run by Drogba down the left ended with Lampard just failing to control the ball enough to fire past Jensen, who collected the ball comfortably at his near post.

But Chelsea finally broke the deadlock when Drogba broke down the right and crossed for Anelka to score from point-blank range.

Chelsea made it two in the 48th minute with a well-worked goal. Anelka supplied the overlapping Lampard, whose cross found Ballack who finished with a diving header.

Chelsea's third goal of the game arrived in the 52nd minute courtesy of defender Ashley Cole.

In a move of elegant simplicity, Chelsea ripped open Burnley's defence when Lampard and Cole exchanged passes.

The accuracy of Lampard's return ball allowed Cole the chance to send an angled volley beyond Jensen.

In the 54th minute Anelka could have made it four but although he rounded Jensen, his shot crashed off the top of the crossbar from just two yards out.

Chelsea continued to flow forward effortlessly and Essien almost made it four in the 66th minute but Jensen dived low to his left to tip the ball around the post.

Jensen denied Essien again in the 76th minute when he punched away a rising drive from the Chelsea midfielder.

Three minutes from time substitute Salomon Kalou was denied a goal when Mears cleared his goalbound effort off the goal-line.

But it had been an electric performance from the Blues who enjoyed a rapturous ovation at the final whistle.

Tag:


Attention: Third parties may advertise their products and/or services on our website.7M does not warrant the accuracy, adequacy or completeness of their contents.
Your dealings with such third parties are solely between you and such third parties and we shall not be liable in any way for any loss or damage of any sort incurred by you.