Home » EPL, Latest » Match Report: Norwich 1 Chelsea 3

The first goal of Willian’s Chelsea career could yet turn out to be the finest. A sumptuous strike, laced with the inside of his left boot, finally subdued a resilient Norwich City as Jose Mourinho’s players claimed their maiden away of the season with a devastating late salvo.

For all the elegance of the winner, this was a reprieve for Chelsea. After Oscar’s sharp opener had threatened a thrashing, the home side fashioned a path back into this engrossing contest, Anthony Pilkington’s equaliser proving a just reward for a period of sustained pressure.

But once Eden Hazard rounded off a lightning counterattack, the stage was left for the £30 million man from São Paulo to apply his memorable flourish.

One could quibble that Alex Tettey ought to have been more alert with his attempted clearance as Hazard bore down on goal, or that John Ruddy ought to have saved the Belgian’s low shot, but ultimately Mourinho executed a masterstroke as his two substitutes combined to deliver the two decisive goals.

The victory could not have made the happiest viewing for England manager Roy Hodgson, with his squad due to assemble at St George’s Park on Monday, as Ashley Cole had to leave the pitch with a suspected rib injury.

But the zeal with which a certain Portuguese gentleman celebrated here left no doubt as to how much this victory meant to Mourinho.

He could be forgiven for having expected a more restful afternoon, after Oscar’s fourth-minute breakthrough.

All it required was a straightforward ball over the top to Demba Ba, who controlled it with the neatest of touches to tee up the onrushing Oscar, who placed his shot comfortably beyond Ruddy and into the far corner.

Gradually Tettey and Leroy Fer began to carve out greater possession, and Petr Cech needed the quickest of reactions to tip Jonny Howson’s snap shot over the bar.

Ba miscued a chance early in the second half to drag his shot fractionally wide, and Mourinho’s body language on the touchline suggested he detected danger.

He was right, as Norwich pounced for their equaliser. Martin Olsson hared down the left to supply a fine cross for Van Wolfswinkel, who rose at the far post to head back across goal for Pilkington to nudge the ball past Cech.

Pilkington was culpable, however, in the unravelling that ensued. His poorly-taken corner was the cue for Chelsea to hit back with interest, David Luiz and Willian combining beautifully for Hazard to apply the coup de grace.

If that unsettled Norwich, then Willian’s goal, the most delightful curler from 20 yards out, poleaxed them to extinguish any hope of recovery.

Source: Telegraph

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