Blackburn found out why league leaders Chelsea are so difficult to overcome as they saw their early lead cancelled out by a goal in either half by the Champions in their Barclays Premier League clash on Saturday.
The home team were the better team in the opening exchanges, and it was thoroughly deserved when they took the lead on 21 minutes when Benjani Mwaruwari headed in an El-Hadji Diouf cross.
It didn’t take Chelsea long to get back on level terms, though, as despite never really looking as good as they can, they broke incisively five minutes before half time with a move which was well finished by Nicolas Anelka, to finish the half with everything to play for.
Chelsea’s goal was a quick-fire breakaway that started with a long Petr Cech kick to Malouda, and a quick exchange of passes before Analka first-timed his shot into the goal. Blink and you’d miss it, as Chelsea showed why they are favourites to retain their crown with a goal from nowhere at all.
Such goals are priceless, and so it would prove in the second half as the only other addition to the scoresheet was Ivanovic’s powerful headed finish from an excellent Zhirkov cross to clinch the win and all three points.
Winning away, and winning when you aren’t at your best are two things that title winners need to achieve, in order to avoid dropping points. The rest of the table may well be becoming a little concerned that Chelsea seem to have these gifts once again this season.
Chelsea remain five points clear at the top of the Premier League as Arsenal and Manchester United (second and third places respectively) both recorded victories this weekend.
- Benjani Mwaruwari, Blackburn (21)
- Nicolas Anleka, Chelsea (39)
- Branislav Ivanovic, Chelsea (84)
05 Givet (Olsson 34)
10 Diouf (Dunn 80)
21 Mwaruwari (Roberts 46)
13 Bunn, 03 Olsson, 08 Dunn, 11 Grella, 09 Kalinic, 23 Hoilett, 30 Roberts
03 A Cole
15 Malouda (Sturridge 72)
39 Anelka (Ferreira 90+3)
22 Turnbull, 17 Bosingwa, 19 Ferreira, 46 McEachran, 21 Kalou, 23 Sturridge, 44 Kakuta