The Blues make it three wins on the bounce this season as they continue impressive start meanwhile Ji Dong-Won bags late consolation for Black Cats but they cannot avoid defeat
Both teams were without their record signings with Asamoah Gyan omitted in view of his imminent Black Cats departure for United Arab Emirates side Al-Ain on loan for the rest of the season, while Chelsea’s Fernando Torres was left on the bench by Andre Villas-Boas.
Despite their problems this campaign it was the home side who came close to opening the scoring when new signing Nicklas Bendtner headed Seb Larsson’s free kick just wide of the returning Petr Cech’s post after the Dane had peeled off his marker in the 18-yard box.
However Chelsea responded straight away to this threat and took the lead in the 18th minute through Terry when he volleyed home from a tight angle after Sunderland had failed to clear their lines from a Blues free-kick when Juan Mata hit the post.
Villas-Boas’ side began to get a firm grip on the game and had opportunities to double their lead through Nicolas Anelka and Ramires who saw efforts flash just over Simon Mignolet's bar.
The Blues were cutting the Black Cats open at will and only a great save from Mignolet stopped a second goal for Chelsea as the Belgian international blocked a goal-bound Anelka shot brilliantly to keep his team in the game.
Wes Brown was having a cracking game in the heart of the Sunderland defence as he denied Anelka and Sturridge on two occasions as they bore down on goal.
This hard work by the former Manchester United defender nearly paid dividends for the Black Cats as Stephane Sessegnon came close just before half-time as he forced Cech into a good save from his vicious half-volley.
Opener | Chelsea celebrate as John Terry puts them ahead against Sunderland
Chelsea came out for the second half and resumed their stranglehold on the game and got a deserved second goal through Sturridge who raced clear of the Sunderland defence and cheekily back-heeled the ball past Mignolet into the net despite the best efforts of Brown to keep it out.
The Blues were moving the ball nicely around the park as the Black Cats were struggling to cope with the movement of the Chelsea midfield and this nearly lead to a third goal for the visitors as a failed clearance fell to substitute Florent Malouda but he was denied by a good save by Mignolet.
Sunderland however were not going to give up without a fight and nearly found a way back into the game through Bendtner as he shot on the turn but his goal-bound effort was well blocked by Branislav Ivanovic as the Serb saved a certain goal.
Steve Bruce introduced teenager Connor Wickham into the game as his side pressed for a way back and his decision nearly paid off but the striker’s header looped just over the bar from Larsson’s cross.
Villas-Boas’ side appeared to step off the gas as the game wore on but remained in full control of the match as they threatened from distance with efforts from Malouda and Ramires coming close to adding a third for the visitors.
Sunderland tried to make it a grandstand finish as they finally found a way through the Chelsea defence in the 90th minute as Dong-Won tapped in from close range after latching onto Larsson’s cross.
However they couldn’t complete the comeback and slumped to their second home defeat of the season as Chelsea ran out deserved winners.
The Blues now make it three wins on the bounce as they continue their good start to the campaign while Steve Bruce is now under pressure with his side yet to register a win this season.