Chelsea rebounded from their worst start to a league season in 10 years by grinding out a victory over Fulham.

Oscar and John Mikel Obi scored second-half goals as the Blues moved top of the Premier League on goal difference.

The visitors created the best chance of a dour first half but Darren Bent shot straight at Blues keeper Petr Cech.

Analysis

"It wasn't vintage from Chelsea but Jose Mourinho knew the points were what mattered today, and goals from Oscar and John Mikel Obi ensured they went top of the league on goal difference."

Oscar settled Chelsea's nerves with a close-range finish before Mikel hooked in his first league goal in 185 games to end a four-game winless run.

The result took Chelsea above Liverpool at the top of the table, although any one of Arsenal, Tottenham, Manchester City or Manchester United could leapfrog the Blues on Sunday.

Following successive defeats by Everton and Basel, manager Jose Mourinho said he wanted to improve Chelsea's style of play but there was little sign of a dramatic change in an unconvincing performance from the hosts.

With Spanish playmaker Juan Mata not deemed worthy of a place in the Blues squad, there was precious little guile about the home side's attacks, with Eto'o largely ineffective before being replaced by Fernando Torres in the second half.

Mourinho says Juan Mata must adapt to return

Chelsea were, nonetheless, deserving winners against a Fulham side that tired in the final half hour and have now not won a match since the first game of the season.

The visitors had held their own in the first half and should have taken the lead when Bent was played through on goal by Pajtim Kasami, only to side-foot his shot tamely at Cech.

Although they dominated possession, Chelsea's play lacked imagination and energy. Eto'o twice failed to make decisive contact with Branislav Ivanovic crosses, while Eden Hazard was restricted to speculative efforts from long-range.

On the stroke of half-time, Ivanovic found space for a low shot from the right, which was saved by Fulham keeper David Stockdale with his legs.

With the tension growing in the stands, Oscar delivered the breakthrough the home fans were craving seven minutes after the break.

Unlikely hero

No outfield player has made more appearances in the Premier League before scoring their first goal than John Obi Mikel.

When David Stockdale failed to hold on to efforts from Andre Schurrle and Eto'o, the Brazilian was on hand to pass the ball into the net from inside the six-yard box.

Fulham came close to an equaliser shortly afterwards when a Kasami free-kick drifted over a crowd of players to Steve Sidwell, who could not direct his far-post header on target.

From then on, the Blues were dominant. They had a penalty appeal turned down by referee Andre Marriner when Ramires went down under a challenge from Fernando Amorebieta before Torres was denied a first league goal of the season when Stockdale tipped his header over the bar.

From the resulting corner, captain John Terry rose highest to nod across goal and the ball bounced up for unlikely goalscorer Mikel to lash home.

Fulham manager Martin Jol:

Fulham must find a way to win - Jol

"The first 50 minutes they were really worried. They couldn't find the space, they couldn't find a solution and that is probably the moment you have to punish them and we couldn't do that.

"The second half they stepped up a gear, they were more aggressive than us and that is what showed.

"If you play the way we played, you have to create more. We will in the future. We needed a little bit more.

"We need a win to get back to the top 10. We're 17th or 18th, we have to get out of there."

Live text and stats

 

Saturday, 21 September 2013

Premier League

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Chelsea 2-0 Fulham FT
(HT 0-0)
  • Oscar 52
  • Mikel 84

    Chelsea

    Substitutes

    Fulham

    Substitutes

    Ref: MarrinerAtt: 41,608
    CHELSEA
    FULHAM

    Possession

    • Chelsea 64%
    • Fulham 36%

    Attempts on target

    • Chelsea 10
    • Fulham 1

    Attempts off target

    • Chelsea 16
    • Fulham 3

    Corners

    • Chelsea 13
    • Fulham 3

    Fouls

    • Chelsea 11
    • Fulham 9
    • Final Result
    • Full Time
    • 90:00+3:01 The referee blows the whistle to end the game.
    • 90:00+2:12 John Terry manages to make a clearance.
    • 90:00+2:01 Shot by Kevin De Bruyne. David Stockdale safely holds on.
    • 90:00+0:10 Fernando Amorebieta manages to make a clearance.
    • 89:07 Kevin De Bruyne manages to make a clearance.
    • Correction - 89:01 Corner from the left by-line taken by Adel Taarabt.
    • 89:01 Corner taken by Kieran Richardson from the left by-line.
    • 88:44 Clearance by Petr Cech.
    • 88:41 Kieran Richardson produces a cross.
    • 88:00 David Stockdale takes the free kick.
    • 87:47 The referee blows for offside.
    • 87:21 Frank Lampard takes a shot. David Stockdale catches the ball.
    • 86:14 Scott Parker makes a clearance.
    • 86:11 Nascimento Ramires delivers the ball.
    • 84:35 Substitution (Fulham) makes a substitution, with Hugo Rodallega coming on for Pajtim Kasami.
    • 84:29 Substitution Hugo Rodallega joins the action as a substitute, replacing Pajtim Kasami.
    • 84:27 Substitution Eden Hazard goes off and Kevin De Bruyne comes on.
    • 83:27 The assist for the goal came from John Terry.
    • 83:27 GOAL - MikelChelsea 2 - 0 Fulham Mikel Mikel Mikel Mikel Mikel slots the ball right footed into the goal. Chelsea 2-0 Fulham.
    • 83:22 Corner from the left by-line taken by Frank Lampard.
    • 82:59 Fernando Torres gets a header at goal. A parry by David Stockdale prevents the goal.
    • 82:57 Corner taken by Emboaba Oscar.
    • 82:35 Clearance by Adel Taarabt.
    • 82:34 Emboaba Oscar sends in a cross.
    • 82:29 Steve Sidwell manages to make a clearance.
    • 82:27 Corner taken by Emboaba Oscar from the right by-line.
    • 81:42 Nascimento Ramires takes a shot. Blocked by Fernando Amorebieta.
    • 81:14 Sascha Riether takes the free kick.
    • 80:58 Frank Lampard challenges Buomesca Tue Na Bangna unfairly and gives away a free kick.
    • 79:54 The ball is delivered by Pajtim Kasami.
    • 79:05 Substitution Frank Lampard is brought on as a substitute for Andre Schurrle.
    • 76:46 Fernando Amorebieta manages to make a clearance.
    • 76:23 Eden Hazard takes the chance to get an effort at goal. David Stockdale catches the ball.
    • 75:50 Steve Sidwell takes the free kick.
    • 75:16 Clearance by John Terry.
    • 75:15 The ball is crossed by Pajtim Kasami.
    • 74:47 Clearance made by John Terry.
    • 73:53 Clearance by Fernando Amorebieta.
    • 73:51 Branislav Ivanovic delivers the ball.
    • 73:40 Nascimento Ramires takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Kieran Richardson gets a block in.
    • 73:38 The ball is delivered by Andre Schurrle.
    • 73:09 Fernando Amorebieta manages to make a clearance.
    • 72:47 Free kick taken by Gary Cahill.
    • 72:33 Branislav Ivanovic fouled by Pajtim Kasami, the ref awards a free kick.
    • 71:49 Substitution Alex Kacaniklic leaves the field to be replaced by Buomesca Tue Na Bangna.
    • 70:47 Fernando Torres takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Blocked by Scott Parker.
    • 70:33 Clearance made by Fernando Amorebieta.
    • 70:31 Branislav Ivanovic takes the chance to get an effort at goal and missed to the left of the target.
    • 70:07 Clearance by Fernando Amorebieta.
    • 69:38 Ashley Cole delivers the ball.
    • 69:37 Clearance made by Sascha Riether.
    • 68:44 Free kick taken by Brede Hangeland.
    • 68:29 Andre Schurrle challenges Scott Parker unfairly and gives away a free kick.
    • 68:25 Fernando Amorebieta makes a clearance.
    • 67:18 Fernando Amorebieta manages to make a clearance.
    • 67:16 The ball is crossed by Eden Hazard.
    • 66:34 Andre Schurrle crosses the ball in from the free kick.
    • 66:12 Scott Parker concedes a free kick for a foul on Ashley Cole.
    • 63:35 Substitution Adel Taarabt is brought on as a substitute for Damien Duff.
    • 63:22 Substitution Fernando Torres is brought on as a substitute for Samuel Eto'o.
    • 62:02 The ball is crossed by Nascimento Ramires.
    • 61:09 Sascha Riether takes the free kick.
    • 61:00 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Scott Parker by Nascimento Ramires.
    • 57:43 Shot by Andre Schurrle went wide of the left-hand post.
    • 57:24 Clearance made by Fernando Amorebieta.
    • 56:16 Brede Hangeland manages to make a clearance.
    • 56:11 Corner from the right by-line taken by Andre Schurrle.
    • 55:40 Nascimento Ramires has an effort at goal. Brede Hangeland gets a block in.
    • 55:38 The ball is delivered by Emboaba Oscar.
    • 54:54 Shot by Mikel Mikel Mikel Mikel Mikel went wide of the left-hand upright.
    • 53:39 Header at goal by Steve Sidwell misses to the right.
    • 53:37 Pajtim Kasami restarts play with the free kick.
    • 52:48 Free kick awarded for a foul by Gary Cahill on Pajtim Kasami.
    • 52:36 Steve Sidwell restarts play with the free kick.
    • 52:20 Foul by Nascimento Ramires on Alex Kacaniklic, free kick awarded.
    • 51:05 GOAL - Emboaba OscarChelsea 1 - 0 Fulham Emboaba Oscar grabs a goal with a left foot finish. Chelsea 1-0 Fulham.
    • 51:02 Sascha Riether manages to make a clearance.
    • Correction - 50:59 Andre Schurrle takes a shot. Samuel Eto'o takes a shot. Parried by David Stockdale back into danger.
    • 50:59 Andre Schurrle takes a shot. Samuel Eto'o takes the chance to get an effort at goal. David Stockdale fumbles the ball.
    • 50:59 Centre by Andre Schurrle.
    • 50:08 The ball is crossed by Emboaba Oscar.
    • 50:04 Damien Duff makes a clearance.
    • 50:02 Corner from the right by-line taken by Emboaba Oscar.
    • Correction - 49:23 Clearance made by Brede Hangeland.
    • Correction - 49:21 Corner taken by Emboaba Oscar.
    • Correction - 49:05 Damien Duff manages to make a clearance.
    • Correction - 49:04 The ball is sent over by Emboaba Oscar.
    • 48:59 Short corner taken by Emboaba Oscar from the right by-line.
    • 48:53 Corner taken by Emboaba Oscar.
    • Correction - 48:52 Clearance made by Damien Duff.
    • Correction - 48:35 Kieran Richardson makes a clearance.
    • Correction - 48:34 The ball is sent over by Emboaba Oscar.
    • Correction - 48:30 Nascimento Ramires takes the free kick.
    • 48:23 Brede Hangeland manages to make a clearance.
    • 48:21 Corner taken by Emboaba Oscar from the right by-line.
    • Correction - 48:19 Foul by Brede Hangeland on Samuel Eto'o, free kick awarded.
    • 48:05 Clearance by Damien Duff.
    • 48:04 The ball is swung over by Emboaba Oscar.
    • 48:01 Kieran Richardson restarts play with the free kick.
    • 47:52 Clearance by Damien Duff.
    • Correction - 47:45 Eden Hazard concedes a free kick for a foul on Alex Kacaniklic.
    • Correction - 47:40 Branislav Ivanovic restarts play with the free kick.
    • 47:35 Kieran Richardson manages to make a clearance.
    • 47:34 Emboaba Oscar sends in a cross.
    • Correction - 47:32 Unfair challenge on Eden Hazard by Kieran Richardson results in a free kick.
    • 47:30 Free kick taken by Nascimento Ramires.
    • 47:19 Unfair challenge on Samuel Eto'o by Brede Hangeland results in a free kick.
    • Correction - 47:13 John Terry manages to make a clearance.
    • 46:45 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Alex Kacaniklic by Eden Hazard.
    • 46:40 Free kick taken by Branislav Ivanovic.
    • 46:32 Eden Hazard fouled by Kieran Richardson, the ref awards a free kick.
    • 46:13 John Terry makes a clearance.
    • 45:41 Alex Kacaniklic makes a clearance.
    • 45:38 The ball is swung over by Branislav Ivanovic.
    • 45:07 Clearance by John Terry.
    • 45:01 The game restarts for the second half.
    • Half Time
    • 45:00+1:03 The match has reached half-time.
    • 45:00+0:50 Emboaba Oscar manages to make a clearance.
    • 45:00+0:48 Corner taken by Damien Duff.
    • 45:00+0:23 Ashley Cole makes a clearance.
    • 45:00+0:23 A cross is delivered by Sascha Riether.
    • 45:00+0:03 Clearance made by Fernando Amorebieta.
    • Correction - 44:59 Shot by Eden Hazard. Blocked by Steve Sidwell.
    • 44:59 Eden Hazard takes a shot.
    • 44:56 Clearance made by Steve Sidwell.
    • 44:53 The ball is delivered by Emboaba Oscar.
    • 44:37 Scott Parker manages to make a clearance.
    • 44:33 Corner taken by Andre Schurrle from the right by-line.
    • 44:12 Branislav Ivanovic takes a shot. David Stockdale makes a block.
    • Correction - 44:11 Branislav Ivanovic takes a shot. Parried by David Stockdale back into danger.
    • 43:33 Free kick taken by Gary Cahill.
    • 43:21 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Eden Hazard by Steve Sidwell.
    • 41:10 Brede Hangeland makes a clearance.
    • 40:27 Shot by Eden Hazard went wide of the left-hand upright.
    • 40:15 Steve Sidwell manages to make a clearance.
    • 40:13 Eden Hazard delivers the ball.
    • 38:33 Clearance made by Gary Cahill.
    • 37:13 Andre Schurrle makes a clearance.
    • 37:10 Corner taken by Alex Kacaniklic from the left by-line.
    • 36:37 Clearance by Branislav Ivanovic.
    • 36:36 Damien Duff delivers the ball.
    • 36:04 Clearance by Gary Cahill.
    • 36:03 Clearance made by John Terry.
    • 35:32 Shot by Eden Hazard missed to the right of the target.
    • 35:28 Corner taken by Andre Schurrle from the left by-line.
    • 35:08 Nascimento Ramires takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Blocked by Brede Hangeland.
    • 35:00 Header by Samuel Eto'o misses left.
    • 34:57 The ball is swung over by Mikel.
    • 33:33 Strike on goal comes in from Emboaba Oscar from the free kick. Brede Hangeland gets a block in.
    • 32:38 Pajtim Kasami challenges Eden Hazard unfairly and gives away a free kick.
    • 31:20 Gary Cahill restarts play with the free kick.
    • Correction - 31:12 Kieran Richardson concedes a free kick for a foul on Branislav Ivanovic.
    • 31:12 Branislav Ivanovic fouled by Alex Kacaniklic, the ref awards a free kick.
    • 30:46 Gary Cahill makes a clearance.
    • 29:43 Clearance by Damien Duff.
    • 29:42 Clearance made by Steve Sidwell.
    • 29:38 Clearance by Fernando Amorebieta.
    • 29:35 The ball is sent over by Emboaba Oscar.
    • 28:49 Shot by Steve Sidwell went wide of the right-hand upright.
    • 28:12 David Stockdale takes the free kick.
    • 27:47 Alex Kacaniklic fouled by Branislav Ivanovic, the ref awards a free kick.
    • 26:42 David Stockdale takes the free kick.
    • 26:12 Foul by Gary Cahill on Scott Parker, free kick awarded.
    • 26:09 Clearance made by Brede Hangeland.
    • 26:05 Corner from the left by-line taken by Andre Schurrle.
    • 25:38 Samuel Eto'o takes a shot. Blocked by Damien Duff.
    • 25:20 Clearance made by Steve Sidwell.
    • 22:50 Emboaba Oscar sends in a cross.
    • 22:34 Clearance made by Steve Sidwell.
    • 22:30 Corner taken by Andre Schurrle from the left by-line.
    • 21:46 Brede Hangeland makes a clearance.
    • 21:44 Nascimento Ramires produces a cross.
    • 21:31 Clearance by Brede Hangeland.
    • 21:21 Clearance made by Scott Parker.
    • 21:20 Emboaba Oscar delivers the ball.
    • 20:58 Fernando Amorebieta manages to make a clearance.
    • 19:26 Header at goal by Nascimento Ramires. David Stockdale safely holds on.
    • 19:24 Andre Schurrle crosses the ball in from the free kick.
    • 18:53 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Nascimento Ramires by Steve Sidwell.
    • 18:33 Clearance made by Sascha Riether.
    • 18:00 John Terry takes the free kick.
    • 17:44 The referee blows for offside against Damien Duff.
    • 17:42 Scott Parker restarts play with the free kick.
    • 17:21 Mikel Mikel gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Pajtim Kasami.
    • 16:48 Header at goal by John Terry to the left of the net.
    • 16:46 Corner from the right by-line taken by Andre Schurrle.
    • 16:24 Fernando Amorebieta manages to make a clearance.
    • 16:23 A cross is delivered by Andre Schurrle.
    • 12:36 Darren Bent takes a shot. Petr Cech parries the ball but the danger is not over.
    • 12:23 Brede Hangeland makes a clearance.
    • 12:21 Ashley Cole crosses the ball.
    • 10:59 Damien Duff manages to make a clearance.
    • 10:56 Branislav Ivanovic sends in a cross.
    • 10:45 Clearance by Alex Kacaniklic.
    • 10:44 The ball is delivered by Andre Schurrle.
    • 8:13 Fernando Amorebieta restarts play with the free kick.
    • 7:46 Unfair challenge on Scott Parker by Samuel Eto'o results in a free kick.
    • 6:52 Damien Duff delivers the ball.
    • 5:49 Clearance made by David Stockdale.
    • 5:30 Samuel Eto'o takes a shot and missed to the left of the goal.
    • 5:28 Centre by Branislav Ivanovic.
    • 4:46 Header by Steve Sidwell goes over the bar.
    • 4:43 Damien Duff sends in a cross.
    • 4:37 Clearance by John Terry.
    • 4:35 Alex Kacaniklic sends in a cross.
    • 4:14 Sascha Riether manages to make a clearance.
    • 4:04 Sascha Riether manages to make a clearance.
    • 4:01 Free kick crossed by Andre Schurrle.
    • 3:29 Foul by Pajtim Kasami on Ashley Cole, free kick awarded.
    • 2:13 Clearance made by Brede Hangeland.
    • Correction - 1:23 Scott Parker takes the free kick.
    • 1:23 Steve Sidwell restarts play with the free kick.
    • 1:19 Free kick awarded for a foul by Samuel Eto'o on Steve Sidwell.
    • 0:54 Clearance made by Ashley Cole.
    • 0:52 Centre by Damien Duff.
    • 0:39 Clearance made by Eden Hazard.
    • 0:37 Sascha Riether produces a cross.
    • 0:00 The referee gets the game underway.

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