With a match still remaining in the group stage of the UEFA Champions League, Chelsea booked their berth to the last 16 in style, putting 5 goals past their hapless opponents.
Captain John Terry headed the ball into the net at just 2 minutes to start the rout, with the second goal coming from a beautiful build up play on 29 minutes. Chelsea scored their third right at the stroke of half time courtesy of an own goal from Schalke defender Kirchhoff. The last two goals were scored by substitutes Didier Drogba and Ramires in a space of just 2 minutes.
Let us take a Conclusions from Chelsea’s Win Over FC Schalke 04 :
1. Chelsea are devastating at set pieces
Before the match Jose Mourinho acknowledged the fact that Schalke had 7 players who were more than 1.9 metres tall. However, it was Chelsea’s players who made their physical presence count in the opponents’ box. On just two minutes Chelsea scored their first goal of the match. As Chelsea got their first corner of the match, John Terry rose above his Schalke counterparts to easily head in the ball. With Matic, Ivanovic, Cahill and Terry, Chelsea command a huge physical presence in the box, both while attacking as well as defending. And last night’s match was no different.
2. Azpilicueta and Matic are the most consistent Chelsea players
It was Cesar Azpilicueta’s first Champions League match of the season, with Filipe Luis playing at left back in the previous matches. But Cesar Azpilicueta just did what he has been doing in the Premier League, producing another energetic, disciplined and error-free performance. He is one of most reliable defenders in the world at the moment. The whole footballing fraternity lauds Chelsea’s midfield, the midfield with the sparkling presence of Fabregas, Oscar, Hazard and Willian. But Matic is the player that holds the midfield together. Screening the defence, and not giving the opponents a second of breathing space when they have possession. Matic, last night, broke Schalke’s passing game, and even advanced with the ball towards their box whenever he got the chance. His towering presence in midfield keeps Chelsea safe.
3. Didier Drogba is tough competition for Loic Remy
Brought on as a substitute in place of Diego Costa on 66 minutes, Drogba scored just ten minutes later. Two minutes later turned provider, chipping a beautiful cross for Ramires to head into the net. Drogba might be 36 but he is still no pushover. And his performances are keeping 27-year-old Loic Remy on the bench. Drogba’s experience, coupled with his strength and ability, still makes him a huge trouble maker for any defence in the world.
4. Ramires deserves more game time
Ramires was brought on at 76 minutes in place of Oscar, and he scored with his first chance. Didier Drogba turning provider this time, and Ramires scoring from a beast of a header. Ramires may have lost his starting berth, but he is the kind of player who gives his all in every match. His tremendous lung capacity, along with his speed his a real asset. He is also a fantastic finisher, as proved by his goals throughout his Chelsea career. Getting a starting spot in Chelsea’s midfield might be a tough job right now, but Ramires will be getting his deserved minutes once the fixture congestion starts from nest week.
5. The Chelsea fans never forget
Roberto Di Matteo was a legendary player at Stamford Bridge. But he became an immortal on 19th May 2012, when he won the Champions League only 3 months after being appointed as caretaker manager. The Holy Grail was won and it is a contribution that no Chelsea fan will ever forget. The away fans from Chelsea filled the Veltins-Arena with chants of ‘One Di Matteo’ on 16 minutes, even as his side was trailing on the pitch. Matteo acknowledged the respect along with Chelsea’s superiority.
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Edited By: Ankur Bhatt