Chelsea 2 – 1 Manchester City

December 13, 2011 - by mosesbet · Filed Under Sports News Comments Off on Chelsea 2 – 1 Manchester City 

Chelsea successfully reduced the gap between them and Manchester City at the top of the table to just 7 points, which Andre Villas-Boas insists has put Chelsea back into the title race.

A late 2nd half penalty (7 minutes from time) from Frank Lampard, who came off the bench as a substitute, sealed all 3 points against a 10-man Manchester City team.

While Lampard questioned the manager’s to start him on the bench in the post-match interview, the result will give the manager and club a huge boost during a period where they could have found themselves knocked out of the Champions League and 13 points adrift of the Premier League leaders.

Interestingly, while it was Chelsea who were under huge pressure to seal all 3 points at home, Manchester City started the better side with Balotelli scoring an opening goal inside the 2nd minute.

It could have been even worse for Chelsea when Silva was blatantly brought down in the box by Bosingwa a few minutes later, however the referee Mark Clattenburg didn’t see it.

After dominating the opening 15 minutes with numerous chances, possession and quick balls through the Chelsea defence, Chelsea slowly reacted to the changes and got themselves into the game after Sturridge drove into the opposition penalty area and played a beautiful pass to Meireles who scored in the 34th minute.

Chelsea ended the first-half as the better team, and with Manchester City slow to start the second-half, it increasingly looked like Chelsea could steal all 3 points.  To protect their back line, Mancini brought on defensive players such as Kolo Toure and De Jonge (his first Premier League match this season), and took off Silva and Aguero.

The turning point came just before the hour when Manchester City right-back Gael Clichy tripped over Ramires in the penalty box, to earn his 2nd yellow card and reduce City to 10 men.

From then on, it looked like another dramatic night at Stamford Bridge as Chelsea tried to make the most of their 1-man advantage and search for the winning goal in front of their home support.

While it looked like City would probably defend their point with 15 minutes left in the game, a silly handball from Joleon Lescott (from a shot from Daniel Sturridge) gave Chelsea a penalty, which Lampard stepped up and booted into the back of the net, kissing his badge and celebrating amongst the Chelsea fans in the 83rd minute.

In response, Roberto Mancini brought on Edin Dzeko and moved Milner to right-back to try and find a goal, however Chelsea’s old guard and 1-man advantage pretty much kept City at bay for the last 5 minutes.

Overall it was an excellent 3 points for Chelsea (who moved 3rd place and within 7 points of the leaders); and a huge success for Andre Villas-Boas, who has had his toughest test as a manager over the last 2 weeks.