Premier League
ChelseaChelsea2NewcastleNewcastle United0
By Luke ReddyBBC Sport
Chelsea celebrate
Diego Costa scored his 15th league goal of the season
  • Oscar opener arrives against run of play
  • Costa adds superb team goal
  • Blues maintain 100% league record at home
  • Chelsea open two-point gap at top

Chelsea overcame Newcastle to record a 10th straight home league win and move two points clear of Manchester City at the top of the Premier League.

Newcastle's Moussa Sissoko hit the post early on as the Blues struggled.

But a quickly-taken corner afforded Oscar space to score from eight yards and Chelsea then took control.

Diego Costa rounded off a wonderful team move with a low strike as Jose Mourinho's side took advantage of City's 1-1 draw at Everton.

Chelsea 2-0 Newcastle: Blues cannot always play well - Steve Holland

The manner of Costa's 15th league goal of the season contrasted with much of Chelsea's afternoon, as such a flowing move seemed beyond them for much of the day.

Eden Hazard's clipped cross, collected and flicked in one movement by Oscar for the on-rushing Costa was exquisite and buried low into the bottom corner by the striker.

Chelsea had drawn at Southampton and lost at Tottenham in league games prior to this meeting and though they were not at their best, built on a fifth straight home clean sheet to maintain their 100% home league record and now no longer rely on goal difference to top the table.

Newcastle, one of only two sides to beat Chelsea in the league this season, sought a first league double over the Blues in 28 years, and will rue missed chances in the opening period.

Diego Costa scores
When Diego Costa doubled Chelsea's lead, the Blues took full control

Caretaker boss John Carver has now overseen a draw with Burnley, an FA Cup exit and this defeat at Chelsea in his three games in charge, form unlikely to prove sufficient to fulfil his hopes of landing the job full-time.

His selection was boosted by the return from injury of goalkeeper Tim Krul, but it was Remy Cabella, making only his 10th league start, who impressed early on.

Goalkeeper Petr Cech - in for Thibaut Courtois who is nursing a finger injury - denied the Frenchman from 18 yards with a low diving save, but he was beaten when Sissoko's thumping shot from the edge of the box smashed against the post.

Blues hot at home
Chelsea are only the fifth team in Premier League history to win their opening 10 home games. They follow Newcastle in 1995-96, Chelsea 2005-06 and Manchester City in both 2011-12 and 2013-14.

That narrow miss proved crucial moments later when Willian's quickly taken corner caught Newcastle cold and allowed Branislav Ivanovic to feed the unmarked Oscar for his first goal since 1 November.

It was harsh on Newcastle, who had nine shots to their hosts' three in the opening period and never regained their momentum as Costa's second sealed the points.

The Spain international could have added a second late on but after leading defenders a merry dance with a superb run, his scuffed shot was cleared off the line by Fabricio Coloccini.

Chelsea assistant coach Steve Holland: "The team was much better in the second half and controlled the game, playing some good football around their box.

Chelsea 2-0 Newcastle: John Carver wants job 'a million per cent'

"You always want to play well but that's not always possible. Today was a 45 minutes which we haven't had often over the course of the season but we still managed to be 1-0 up at half time. It is important that when you don't play as well as you'd like to still get the result."

Newcastle caretaker manager John Carver: "When we got here people said we would park the bus, we didn't do that, we created some great chances but switching off just before half time is a cardinal sin.

"It's not as if we didn't talk about it because we conceded from a short corner against Leicester last week and we watched a video so we'd talked about it but that's what happens when you play top sides.

"It's been a difficult time because of the Christmas period so we have not had much prep time and this is the first week we've had a full training week and they executed the plan as I wanted. I told them after I'm proud of them."

Chelsea and Newcastle team
Kurt Zouma made his first league start for Chelsea while Petr Cech started only his third league game this season
Oscar celebrates
Oscar netted from eight yards for his fourth league goal of the season, though it arrived against the run of play
John Carver
John Carver wants the Newcastle job full-time but has just one draw to show from three matches

Line-ups

Chelsea

  • 1Cech
  • 2Ivanovic
  • 5Zouma
  • 26Terry
  • 28AzpilicuetaSubstituted forFilipe Luísat 37'minutes
  • 4Fàbregas
  • 21MaticBooked at 71mins
  • 22Willian
  • 8OscarBooked at 76minsSubstituted forSantos do Nascimentoat 79'minutes
  • 10E Hazard
  • 19Diego CostaSubstituted forRemyat 84'minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Filipe Luís
  • 7Santos do Nascimento
  • 11Drogba
  • 12Mikel
  • 13Courtois
  • 18Remy
  • 24Cahill

Newcastle

  • 1Krul
  • 22Janmaat
  • 6WilliamsonBooked at 45mins
  • 2Coloccini
  • 36DummettBooked at 65mins
  • 8Anita
  • 14ColbackBooked at 58mins
  • 20Cabella
  • 7SissokoSubstituted forRiviereat 84'minutes
  • 11GouffranSubstituted forAmeobiat 63'minutes
  • 17Pérez

Substitutes

  • 3Santon
  • 19Haidara
  • 23Vuckic
  • 28Ameobi
  • 29Riviere
  • 37Satka
  • 41Woodman
Referee:
Roger East
Attendance:
41,612

Match Stats

Home TeamChelseaAway TeamNewcastle
Possession
Home63%
Away37%
Shots
Home9
Away11
Shots on Target
Home5
Away5
Corners
Home7
Away4
Fouls
Home13
Away13

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Chelsea 2, Newcastle United 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Chelsea 2, Newcastle United 0.

  3. Post update

    Cesc Fàbregas (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  4. Post update

    Foul by Rémy Cabella (Newcastle United).

  5. Post update

    Corner, Newcastle United. Conceded by Kurt Zouma.

  6. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Vurnon Anita (Newcastle United) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Jack Colback.

  7. Post update

    Attempt missed. Loïc Remy (Chelsea) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Cesc Fàbregas.

  8. Post update

    Cesc Fàbregas (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  9. Post update

    Foul by Sammy Ameobi (Newcastle United).

  10. Post update

    Eden Hazard (Chelsea) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  11. Post update

    Foul by Daryl Janmaat (Newcastle United).

  12. Substitution

    Substitution, Newcastle United. Emmanuel Rivière replaces Moussa Sissoko.

  13. Substitution

    Substitution, Chelsea. Loïc Remy replaces Diego Costa.

  14. Post update

    Nemanja Matic (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  15. Post update

    Foul by Sammy Ameobi (Newcastle United).

  16. Post update

    Attempt missed. Cesc Fàbregas (Chelsea) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Nemanja Matic.

  17. Post update

    Corner, Chelsea. Conceded by Fabricio Coloccini.

  18. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Diego Costa (Chelsea) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Eden Hazard.

  19. Substitution

    Substitution, Chelsea. Ramires replaces Oscar.

  20. Post update

    Foul by Filipe Luis (Chelsea).