Andriy Shevchenko scored his second goal of the season as Chelsea moved to the top of the Premiership with a 2-1 victory over Portsmouth at Stamford Bridge.
Portsmouth started brightly but were soon under pressure as Chelsea took control. Despite dominating the first half, the Blues couldn’t find a way past Pompey goalkeeper David James who made a string of good saves.
The breakthrough came on 55 minutes when Shevchenko stroked in Arjen Robben’s cut back, the ball appearing to take a slight deflection off Sol Campbell.
Two minutes later Michael Ballack nodded home Didier Drogba’s headed pass and the game was all but over. Both Ballack and Shevchenko received yellow cards for their exuberant but entirely justified celebrations.
Benjani Mwaruwari pulled one back for Portsmouth in the 69th minute, slotting home after a goalmouth scramble, but that was against the run of play and did nothing more than give the scoreline a degree of respectability in Pompey’s favour.
Chelsea dominated and thoroughly deserved the victory.
The result leaves the Blues three points clear of Manchester United, who play Liverpool at Old Trafford tomorrow.