Chelsea have returned to the winners list with a relatively comfortable 3-0 victory over Bolton at Stamford Bridge today.
Manager Andre Villas-Boas recalled the experienced Ashley Cole, Frank Lampard and Michael Essien after leaving them on the bench for the midweek clash with Napoli and it proved a smart move as the Blues came up with maximum points for the first time in five Premier League outings.
After an average first 45 minutes, Chelsea broke the deadlock early in the second half when David Luiz advanced with the ball into the area before producing a beautiful curling effort past Adam Bogdan to get the ball rolling.
The Blues then got a second just after he hour-mark when Didier Drogba majestically headed home Frank Lampard’s in-swinging corner for his 99th Premier League goal and just his fourth of the season.
With just over ten minutes left, Chelsea had a third when Juan Mata whipped in a cross from the right to the far post for Lampard to volley home for his 150th career league goal and wrap up the points for the West Londoners.
Bolton actually had the better of the chances in the first half with David Wheater’s 23rd minute header just missing the target and Ryo Miyaichi firing over late with Bogdan managing to keep out a well-struck Daniel Sturridge effort on the half-hour mark.
In the second, it was all Chelsea as Luiz could have added a second only to see his 55th minute header cleared off the line by Miyaichi whilst Essien had an attempt saved by Bogdan with the scraps falling in front of Luiz and Drogba but the Trotters gloveman was brave in smothering their efforts.
In the end, however, Villas-Boas’ charges were too powerful for Owen Coyle’s men to move to fourth on the table with the visitors, who have not beaten the Blues in their last 17 Premier League attempts, remained second bottom.
TRIBAL ASKS: Is this the perfect tonic for Chelsea after a rough few weeks? A clean sheet from Luiz and Cahill and goals to veterans Drogba and Lampard…AVB might crack a smile!
Stamford Bridge, London - 40,999
Yellow cards: CHE - nil
BOL - Darren Pratley 42’