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17:37 26th November 2011

Chelsea On Top

Chelsea 3 (Terry 7, Sturridge 29, Mata 45)

Wolves 0

A much improved performance in the second-half failed to bring Wolves any reward from their trip to Chelsea with the London side hitting three in the opening 45 minutes to put the issue virtually beyond doubt.

Injuries and suspensions meant there were four changes to the Wolves starting line-up with George Elokobi, Ronald Zubar, Matt Jarvis and Steven Fletcher replacing Richard Stearman, Jamie O'Hara, Stephen Hunt and Kevin Doyle. Elokobi played at left-back with Stephen Ward moving up into the left midfield slot.

Chelsea kicked-off attacking The Shed end of Stamford Bridge and after an early Ward cross was cleared Raul Meireles hit a low shot wide of the far post.

But it didn't take Blues long to open their account with home skipper John Terry heading home following Juan Mata's corner after just seven minutes.

Mata almost helped himself to a second as he connected with Branislav Ivanovic's low cross but the Spanish midfielder scooped the ball high over the bar.

A foul by Meireles on Fletcher gave Nenad Milijaš the opportunity to pump the ball into the Chelsea box but Didier Drogba had dropped back and he headed clear.

Dave Edwards was yellow carded for pulling back Meireles before, at the other end, a flying header from Ward went over after Elokobi had crossed from the left.

After 29 minutes Daniel Strurridge added a second for Chelsea. He converted from close range after Mata had beaten Zubar and pulled the ball back from the bye-line.

Edwards almost reduced the deficit following a Milijaš corner. Christophe Berra nodded the ball back across the six-yard box but Edwards' header was wide.

After Karl Henry had been booked for dissent, Mick McCarthy made a tactical change sending Sylvan Ebanks-Blake on to support Fletcher with Milijaš the man making way.

Wayne Hennessey made a terrific save when he turned over a fierce effort from Ivanovic but the keeper stood no chance as Mata rifled a shot into the roof of the net after a centre from Ashley Cole seconds from the end of the half.

Half-Time: Chelsea 3 Wolves 0

Five minutes after the resumption, Hennessey made a flying double handed save to claim a half volley from Ramires.

In the 53rd minute Ebanks-Blake picked out Ward on the edge of the Chelsea box. He turned and hit a low shot that beat Petr Cech but rolled agonisingly wide of the far post.

The move was the prelude to a short spell of Wolves pressure that ended when Sturridge broke clear on the right and raced into the box before hitting a short cross that rolled across the face of goal to Roger Johnson who booted the ball behind.

Midway through the half Cech cut out a cross-shot from Fletcher after a Jarvis corner hadn't been cleared by the home defence.

In a two minute spell both keepers made double saves. Hennessey was first into action as he beat away Sturridge's angled drive and then pushed out Mata's follow up.

Then Jarvis worked his way into the home area before hitting a low shot that Cech couldn't cling onto. Jarvis reclaimed possession and squared a pass to Ward who looked odds on to reduce the deficit only for Cech to throw himself in front of the ball to deflect it away.

Anthony Forde made his League debut for Wanderers when he took the place of Zubar and with Frank Lampard already having been sent on for Meireles, the home side used up their substitute quota by switching Fernando Torres and Jose Bosingwa for Drogba and Ivanovic respectively.

Six minutes from time Adlene Guedioura was Wolves' final change when he went on for Fletcher.

In the dying seconds, Ebanks-Blake almost grabbed a consolation but his glancing header from Jarvis's cross flew inches wide of the post.

Chelsea: Cech, Ivanovic (Bosingwa 77), Cole, Luiz, Romeu, Ramires, Mata, Drogba (Torres 77), Meireles (Lampard 70), Sturridge, Terry (capt).

Unused subs: Turnbull, Mikel, Malouda, Kalou.

Booking: Terry (88 - time wasting).

Wolves: Hennessey, Zubar (Forde 75), Elokobi, Edwards, Berra, Johnson (capt), Henry, Fletcher (Guedioura 84), Ward, Milijaš (Ebanks-Blake 38), Jarvis.

Unused subs: Craddock, Hammill, Doherty, De Vries.

Bookings: Edwards (17 - foul), Henry (35 - dissent).

Referee: L. Mason.

Attendance: 41,648.

    Data provided by Press Association


    For the first 50 years of their existence, England played their home matches all around the country.