Chelsea’s early season march was not slowed or indeed halted, rather stepping up pace in their title charge after professionally dispatching of a strong Everton side in comfortable fashion. Resistance from Everton proved harmless, as Chelsea’s onslaught of goals was enough to secure three points and take them top of the table.
Two draws thus far for Everton as they welcomed the so far unbeatable Chelsea. With expectations having increased from last campaign, Everton would be looking to perhaps win the game, a prospect that was not far from being mirrored against Arsenal last time out. The familiar faces of Romelu Lukaku, and new boy- Samuel Eto’o, were both in line to face their former employers. While Chelsea’s ruthless striker, Diego Costa, was starting after a hamstring complaint throughout training this week. In the interest of changes, Ramires had been recalled to the Chelsea squad to partner Matic in centre midfield, coinciding in Fabregas playing behind the striker. Whiel Willian was making his first league start. As for Everton, McGeady starts ahead of Pienaar.
As the game kicked off Chelsea produced the early bit of gold dust, Ramires picking the ball up in centre midfield and striding forward, passing to Willian who gave the ball to the Fabregas. His clever pass detecting Costa’s marauding run who picked the ball up and majestically put it under the legs of the floundering Howard. 1-0. Everton paying the price for letting Chelsea run rampant just seconds into the game. This rampant mentality was not eased with the early lead, as a minute or so later Chelsea grabbed another goal. Costa picked the ball up on a wing position, picking out Ramires who spotted Ivanovic, his finish possessing the attributes of a striker as he calmly collected the ball and potted past the beleaguered Howard. Claims were offside were waved away by the linesman as Howard furiously appealed for the flag, replays showing that Ivanovic was indeed in an offside position. Everton had the right to feel hard done by.
Everton fans were not used to seeing goals being conceded so easily, the Everton defence had caused a sense of derision from the Chelsea players who were making easy work of a normally resolute defence. This sense of surprise at this leaky defence was akin with the shocked figure of Tim Howard who claimed a through ball from two yards out and then fell inside his penalty area, while the electronic score board took some time to register Chelsea’s second goal, this was not like Everton.
The eighth minute led to more controversy. Tim Howard seemed to catch the ball from outside the area with another official, the referee, failing to spot this unlawful act. Straight red it should of been but the referee blundered on. Despite Chelsea knocking the stuffing out of Everton they seemed to show this sense of resilience throughout the rest of the first half, as Romelu Lukaku’s header came of the post for Sylvain Distin to slide the ball into the net, only for the goal to be rightly given the offside flag. This had a gleaming sense of positivity as Everton were not prepared to cave in, a mentality applauded for a decent enough side, Everton were not going to give up without a fight. The latter stages of the half led to the toffees trying to stick a way back into the game, this finally coming as Coleman picked out Mirallas from the right as he tucked in a clinical header. Game on.
The second half started again with the enigmatic duo of Fabregas and Costa nearly joining up again. Chelsea has resumed the earlier sense of attacking spirit, having dropped to a somewhat back six after going two up in the first half- they were hungry for more. It was an opening to the second half where both teams were going for goal, it was the 66th minute which pulled the plug on a torrent of goals. Hazard using his blistering pace to cut into the let hand side before a clip of Seamus Coleman allowed the ball to trickle past Howard and for Chelsea to take one step beyond the trailing Everton side. Tensions were high as Costa took a jibe at Coleman, just in time for Howard to confront This striking menace and get himself a flash of yellow from the referee.
Still Everton went on as Lukaku just a few minutes later evaded three Chelsea players to give the ball to McGeady who passed it through to Steven Naismith who clinically slotted to keep the game alive. 3-2. Nemanja Matic came charging forward from the centre of midfield, trying his luck at goal, with his shot taking a nick of Jagielka for it to be planted into the back of the net. Chelsea were not going to let this resurgent Everton claim any spoils from this fiery encounter. In the blue of Chelsea last season, now the dark blue of Everton, Samuel Eto’s introduction into the match was another bullet in the chamber of the striking gun, as the debutant could not take in his new surroundings rather act as another force of firepower. He did just that as a swerving Baines free-kick was met by his head, swooping into the net as Everton sprinted back past the half-way line to keep this internal optimism going.
But like all good teams, they know how to get the job done. Everton nearly equalised through Mirallas who only just missed the post with a decent effort. But Chelsea, made of concrete stuff went up the over end and with some exchanges around the penalty area and coincidentally Matic found the normally defensive Ramires who put the ball past Howard. The keeper really should of done better. Another new boy Muhamed Besic was introduced at the latter end of the half to make a positive impression on the Everton faithful, however he will have to try again another day as a laborious back heel was picked up by Chelsea Substitute Mikel and fed to none other that Costa who skipped past the keeper a little, before dispatching a brilliant goal into the bottom corner. 6-3. Game over.
Everton can certainly score goals, however a normally concrete back-bone was made to pay today and offers food for thought for Martinez who needs to unite his defence. Costa scared the Everton defence today, destroying their offside trap and sending out a danger warning to other title rivals, with him in the team, Chelsea are extremely dangerous.
Star Man: Diego Costa
Fact: Diego Costa is the second player in Chelsea’s history to score in their first three league games after Adrian Mutu.