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UEFA Champions League

  • October 2, 2012
  • • 14:45
  • • Parken, København
  • Referee: M. Strahonja
  • • Attendance: 25120
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FC Nordsjaelland 0-4 Chelsea: Mata at the double as holders run away with result

FC Nordsjaelland 0-4 Chelsea: Mata at the double as holders run away with result

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In a flattering scoreline for Chelsea, its Danish opponents enjoyed two extended spells of pressure before three goals in the final 11 minutes calmed Roberto Di Matteo's nerves.

In a scoreline that did not necessarily match the away side's performance, Chelsea escaped Denmark as a 4-0 winner over FC Nordsjaelland on Tuesday night.

Juan Mata opening the scoring in the first half, but two extended periods of pressure from the Danish champions could, and perhaps should, have led to a different game. David Luiz’s thunderous free kick, Mata’s second and a Ramires tap-in wrapped up Chelsea’s first win of their cup defense, though, on the heels of the tournament-opening draw with Juventus.

Chelsea nearly got off to the perfect start when Oscar stood the ball up beautifully inside the area for Victory Moses to simply convert into an empty net from two yards, only for highly-rated Nordsjaelland defender Jores Okore to do enough to head the ball against the post.

It was one-way traffic, with the holders dominating proceedings, with an opening goal seemingly inevitable as Oscar and then Lampard both went close within the first 10 minutes. Nordsjaelland finally ventured out of its own half soon after. Joshua John led the charge forward, but instead of unleashing a rash attempt at goal, the striker looked up and found Kasper Lorentzen inside the area. The former Brondby man's effort was blocked by a last-ditch lunge from Ashley Cole, though.

Lorentzen was made to rue that miss shortly afterwards when Enoch Adu was caught in possession by Fernando Torres, who found Lampard in space centrally. The influential midfielder then fed Mata, who was charging down the right channel, to slot home and give the English side the 1-0 lead.

Nordsjaelland gradually grew in confidence though, and perhaps should have scored when Okore floated an inch-perfect cross onto the head of Mikkel Beckmann inside the box, but the forward’s header looped over the bar. Just minutes later, Nordsjaelland again found themselves in a promising position when Beckmann hit a first-time effort across his body with Petr Cech motionless, only to see the ball sliced away from the target.

The hosts were getting closer, and only a glorious Cech save denied Nordsjaelland its best chance of the game, when John cut inside from the left, skipping past David Luiz and cracking a fierce shot towards the far top corner, which the goalkeeper managed to tip onto the post.

As in the first half, just when the home side was at its most threatening, Chelsea pounced.

First, Luiz hit a stunning free kick from the left-hand corner of the area that flew in via the near post, before Mata first tried to find an onrushing Lampard inside the box, but, with the pass blocked, tried his own luck and coolly slotted the ball in for Chelsea's third.

Ramires gave the scoreline an unjust look in stoppage time, rolling in a fourth after neat play from Torres and Oscar, with Di Matteo visibly relieved on the touchline after an extended period of pressure from the Superliga champions.

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