Football

Chelsea too good for rampant Royals

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Torres celebrates his Chelsea goal. (©GettyImages)
Torres celebrates his Chelsea goal. (©GettyImages).

Chelsea avoided a major upset after scoring three times without reply to come from behind and win 4-2 against Reading at Stamford Bridge.

Second half goals from Gary Cahill, Fernando Torres and Branislav Ivanovic maintained the Blues perfect first home game record since Roman Abramovich arrived at the club in 2003.

The victory sends Chelsea to the top of the Premier League table for the first time since November 2010, with Eden Hazard the main contributor, adding three assists to the two he made in Sunday's 2-0 win at Wigan.

Roberto Di Matteo's side were made to work hard for their three points, despite seizing an early advantage with a well-taken Frank Lampard penalty after 18 minutes, following Hazard's jinking run in the box, which prompted a clumsy challenge from Chris Gunter.

Moments later and the Royals were level. Gareth McCleary's well-whipped cross was met by the head of Pavel Pogrebnyak, his bullet header flying past the helpless Petr Cech.

The Chelsea stopper should have done beter for Reading's second, though, after fumbling a Danny Guthrie free-kick into his own net, giving Brian McDermott's side a surprise half-time lead.

After the break, the home side came flying out of the traps, in front of a 41,733 strong crowd, and after the attacking introductions of Oscar and Daniel Sturridge, Chelsea drew level through defender Cahill.

Torres then completed the turnaround, tapping in Ashley Cole's cross from close-range, leaving the Reading bench angry that the linesman had not spotted the Spaniard was offside.

It was a bitter pill to swallow for the visitors, whose fearless approach deserved better. Right until the last whistle, Reading pushed for an equaliser.

After winning a corner in stoppage time, goalkeeper Adam Federici made his way upfield, leaving an unguarded net. Chelsea cleared, and broke with the tireless Hazard who teed up Ivanovic for his second goal in as many games.

Topics:
Reading
Football
Chelsea
Premier League
Fernando Torres
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