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UEFA Champions League

  • 14 March 2012
  • • 19:45
  • • Stamford Bridge, London
  • Referee: F. Brych
  • • Attendance: 37784

Chelsea win Aggregate 5 - 4

Live Commentary

  • Chelsea win 4-1 on the night to go through 5-4 on aggregate in a tense match which could have gone either way. After a shaky start in which the Blues looked very vulnerable to Napoli's trademark counter-attack, Di Matteo's side continued to display courage going forward and collect a victory on the night, growing more resilient in defence as the match went on. Ivanovic's finish for the winning goal displayed great composure amid an end-to-end battle in which the Blues' old guard displayed their fighting qualities in a match that put on a great spectacle as the tie could have gone either way on aggregate.
  • 120' + 1'
  • 119'
    Chelsea camp in their own half now as Napoli pour men forward. The Blues lose the opportunity to settle the tie as Malouda crosses to Drogba in a 2 v 2 situation but the Ivorian volleys to the right of the goal.
  • 117'
    David Luiz displays a velvet touch at the most unlikely of moments after controlling a cross bringing the ball to the floor when a mistake would have been disastrous. The Brazilian is limping now and Di Matteo and substituted Terry switch him out of defence for Michael Essien.
  • 116'
    Drogba strikes the Napoli wall with a freekick from 30 yards out on the right of the box.
  • 115'
    Yellow Card Hugo Campagnaro
  • 114'
    Malouda displays both spirit and nous as he wins the ball in Napoli's half and then collects a free kick. Ramires threatens another goal after blasting the ball at goal from the left edge of the box, but the shot is blocked. On the resulting break Pandev attempts to collect a through ball right at the heart of the Blues' defence but the ball rolls beyond him.
  • 113'
    Torres wins a freekick with Inler receiving a yellow card after advanving through the centre of the pitch with runners supporting down the right wing.
  • 112'
    Yellow Card Gökhan Inler
  • 110'
    SubstitutionSalvatore Aronica Edu Vargas
  • 110'
    Quick and dangerous Eduardo Vargas comes on in place of defender Aronica as Drogba runs the clock down recovering on the ground from something he perhaps exaggerated.
  • 108'
    Ramires advances down the right wing and finds Torres, who turns inside and hits a shot that is deflected. De Sanctis scrambles across to his left to save the effort.
  • 106'
    SubstitutionMarek Hamsik Goran Pandev
  • 106'
    The second half of extra time is underway and Napoli have brought on Macedonian international forward Goran Pandev in search of a goal. Any goal scored by the Partenopei would see them through on away goals, with penalties now impossible. Chelsea must keep a clean sheet to progress.
  • 105'
    Assist Didier Drogba
  • 105'
    Goal Branislav Ivanovic
  • 105'
    GOAL IVANOVIC! Ramires picks the ball up by the right corner flag and stands up his marker. Drogba comes short to collect the ball and turns neatly on the edge of the box, hitting a low cross which evades the Partenopei defenders and rolls to Ivanovic just beyond the penalty spot. The Serb defender smashes it to the heart of the goal in a deceptively difficult finish.
  • 104'
    Torres runs down the left flank and hits a brilliant pass with the outside of his right foot to the onrushing Ramires, but a Napoli defender is on hand to get a crucial block. Ramires could repeat the trick with his endless reserves of energy.
  • 102'
    Torres wins a header at the back post after the ball flies over Zuniga, but the effort bounces on the top of the net.
  • 100'
    Torres forces an error from the Napoli defence when De Sanctis foolishly advances outside his box towards a hopeful long ball. The ball goes over him and bounces towards the Spanish striker on the right edge of the box, but he puts it wide from an albeit tight angle with covering defenders stopping him from marching towards the goal.
  • 98'
    SubstitutionJohn Terry José Bosingwa
  • 98'
    Yellow Card Ashley Cole
  • 98'
    Dossena advances to the byline but the ball bounces away from him for a goal kick as he tries to reach a through ball down the left wing.
  • 97'
    Ashley Cole is yellow carded after felling Campagnaro on the right wing. John Terry is replaced by Bosingwa, who will go to right back with Ivanovic moving to the centre of defence.
  • 95'
    SubstitutionJuan Mata Florent Malouda
    Florent Malouda comes on for Juan Mata. The Spaniard must be tiring as his close control has been a key weapon over the two legs of the tie. It could guide the Blues to a more direct style of play with Di Matteo's side now fielding a front six suited to an orthodox 4-4-2.
  • 94'
    Cavani is fractionally offside as he runs down the left flank and looks to go through on goal. Good call from the linesman.
  • 93'
    Hamsik standing inside the box absolutely canes a volley from a left wing cross but it goes a yard over. It would have been spectacular. Inler blasts over from outside the box shortly afterwards.
  • 92'
    Torres dribbles through 2 defenders on the edge of the box and forces a corner on the right flank. Ivanovic wins a header after rising high above Dossena and directs a good header towards the bottom left of the goal, but it rolls wide.
  • 91'
    Extra time kicks off!
  • 90' + 2'
    Full Time at Stamford Bridge! It's a tie and we go to extra time. Both sides have attempted to snatch victory in the final ten minutes and it looked as though a mistake by either side could have decided the tie. The ball has spent more of its time in Napoli's half in the last ten minutes but none of the Blues' forwards could find a break through, while the Partenopei have caused a scare or two as they play on the break.
  • 90' + 2'
    David Luiz exchanges passes with Torres and tries to get to the byline on the right, but instead wins a corner. Terry flicks on Mata's delivery to the near post but it finishes as the last act of the game.
  • 88'
    Drogba is dragged down by Aronica inside the six yard box as he attempts to connect with Ramires' cross. The referee does not act and the Blues are almost punished when Cech rushes off his line to gather the ball on the left edge of the box from the onrushing attacker.
  • 85'
    David Luiz is on hand to prevent Cavani getting through one-on-one with the keeper after he deftly controlled a high ball. As the ball works its way out to Hamsik out on the right wing for Napoli the Slovakian lofts the ball over the Chelsea back four but Lavezzi is unable to get a connection on the cross.
  • 84'
    Torres works around Dossena on the right wing and Mata arguably could have attempted to win a penalty after controlling the ball but being caught by Aronica. He nobly stays on his feet but is unable to keep control of the ball.
  • 82'
    With the tie tense and headed for extra time the game takes a brief break when the referee laughably inspects Lavezzi's white underwear which conflicts with Napoli's grey kit. Rules are rules but changing the offending garments was never a possibility.
  • 79'
    Torres picks the ball up on the left edge of the box and tries to wriggle his way through the massed Napoli ranks, but Cannavaro puts it out for a corner.
  • 78'
    David Luiz dashes across the penalty area and clatters Dossena just outside the right edge of the box in clearing the danger. Napoli appeal for a penalty but win a corner, and Cavani's near post attempt is cleared by Lampard.
  • 75'
    Penalty Goal Frank Lampard
    GOAL Frank Lampard. He smashes the penalty going for power over pace and the ball flies above De Sanctis as he guesses correctly diving to the right.
  • 73'
    Chelsea win their second corner in quick succession and win a penalty after Ivanovic's powerful header hits Andrea Dossena's arm.
  • 69'
    Terry emphatically slides in to tackle Lavezzi as he runs down the left wing, then dives in to block Inler's strike on the edge of the box. The back four then becomes stretched when Ashley Cole slips and Cavani backheels the ball into the path of Zuniga who hits a powerful at Cech for the keeper to save.
  • 68'
    Yellow Card Andrea Dossena
  • 65'
    Drogba forces another save from De Sanctis after turning neatly on the edge of the box to hit a powerful left foot shot at the keeper. Paolo Cannavaro falls to the floor but recovers in the aftermath.
  • 64'
    David Luiz advances through the centre of the park and slides through a precise through ball to Torres on the right edge of the box. The Spaniard combines well with Juan Mata to and Ivanovic takes advantage to smash a shot from an acute angle into De Sanctis.
  • 63'
    SubstitutionDaniel Sturridge Fernando Torres
  • 61'
    Napoli are settling back down again getting much of the team behind the ball. Fernando Torres arrives in place of Daniel Sturridge in an attempt to give the Partenopei a fresh threat to deal with.
  • 59'
    Mata fouls Aronica attemtping to win a 50-50 which breaks up play after a frantic ten minutes.
  • 57'
    So that means Chelsea now need to score to draw the match on aggregate and on away goals. Fernando Torres is spotted warming up on the touchline to this end.
  • 55'
    Goal Gökhan Inler
    GOAL GOKHAN INLER! It's an excellent goal from the Swiss international after he chests down John Terry's headed clearance and hits it sweetly on the half volley across goal where it nestles in the bottom left corner of the goal to static Petr Cech's right.
  • 53'
    Yellow Card Paolo Cannavaro
  • 52'
    The Partenopei enjoy a spell of possession on the edge of the Blues box but do not manage to break through the massed Chelsea defenders.
  • 47'
    Assist Frank Lampard
  • 47'
    Goal John Terry
    GOAL JOHN TERRY! The Blues' captain rises high running towards the near post to meet a corner conceded cheaply on the Partenopei's left side of defence. The centre back got away from Inler in the middle of the box and no one was on-hand to track his run. That goal will see Chelsea through if they keep a clean sheet for the remaining 40 odd minutes.
  • 46'
    And the second half is underway at Stamford Bridge!
  • Half Time at Stamford Bridge! Napoli looked poised to humble the Blues in their own stadium early on, getting a string of shots off as the Blues looked impotent in attack and unable to cope with the Partenopei's pace on the break. Yet DIdier Drogba put Di Matteo's side in front with an excellent header and from then on the home side piled on the pressure and could have got the second goal that would put them through just before the break. Cristiano Maggio was one of their greatest threats, tearing down the right on one occasion to cross for Cavani to narrowly miss the target mid-way through the half, and will be a big loss after going off through injury.
  • 45'
    The freekick leads to another crossing opportunity which Aronica does well to clear. But after De Sanctis punches away the resuiting corner David Luiz puts a cross in towards Drogba which Cannavaro slides in to divert back to De Sanctis. That was close.
  • 44'
    Ashley Cole is fouled on the half way line as he sidesteps Gokhan Inler. The Swiss midfielder avoids a yellow card despite the protests of the Blues' crowd.
  • 43'
    Yellow Card Frank Lampard
  • 42'
    Ivanovic gets forward down the right flank again as Chelsea work the ball from side to side in search of a breakthrough. The Blues have the maverick David Luiz protecting the Serbian on that side and will need to make sure the Partenopei do not take advantage on the counter.
  • 40'
    Lavezzi drops off the Chelsea back four to receive a first time pass from Hamsik. He shoots and wins a corner which is deflected wide, but the resulting delivery is hugely disappointing from the Argentine.
  • 38'
    Michael Essien fires a shot with his left foot wide to the left of De Sanctis' goal after good work by Ramires to work the ball to Juan Mata between the lines.
  • 37'
    SubstitutionChristian Maggio Andrea Dossena
  • 36'
    Maggio has been struggling for the last few minutes and goes off to be replaced by former Liverpool left back Andrea Dossena. Zuniga will move to the right wing back slot but it's a blow for the Partenopei with the Italian international right back one of their biggest threats.
  • 35'
    Ivanovic wins the ball from Inler and advances to the Napoli box in expectation of a Sturridge cross. The striker is full of confidence and takes on Zuniga but loses the ball.
  • 33'
    Wayne Veysey at Stamford Bridge: Robert Di Matteo, or RDM as he shall be now known, nearly knocked himself off his feet in his hysteria as he celebrated Didier Drogba's superb flying header. No sign of Italian chic on that occasion. The Bridge, anxious only minutes ago as Napoli threatened to run amok, is rocking now.
  • 31'
    It's end to end stuff as Napoli break from the resulting corner with Cavani dashing down the right before shooting to the left of the goal from the edge of the box. As long as the chances are as good as just created it's a risk Chelsea will have to take.
  • 30'
    Daniel Sturridge almost forces a second in quick succession after cutting inside and then back out to flash a cross across the goal. It's going towards Drogba but Hugo Campagnaro sticks out a leg and puts it wide for a corner. It could have gone anywhere.
  • 28'
    Assist Ramires
  • 28'
    Goal Didier Drogba
    Didier Drogba GOAL! Ramires steps inside on the left flank and puts in an excellent cross for the Ivorian who runs from the right across the six yard box before leaping like a salmon across Salvatore Aronica to bury the ball to Morgan Di Sanctis' right.
  • 24'
    Sturridge gives the ball just inside Napoli's half away but the Italian side do not manage to launch a quick break, thankfully for the Blues. That demonstrates the big issue for Roberto DI Matteo as the Partenopei have so far looked comfortable defending in numbers in their own half and forced most Chelsea attacks to end in unsuccessful crosses.
  • 21'
    Juan Mata picks up the ball between the lines but is forced wide and his deep cross poses no threat to the Partenopei. The Blues have put in a few crosses from deep so far into Drogba, through Ivanovic in particular, but Napoli have looked significantly more threatening on the break.
  • 19'
    Wayne Veysey Live at Stamford Bridge: "The travelling Napoli fans don't need much encouragement to puff out their chests and warble a few tunes, but the vibrancy of their team here is only helping to raise the decibel level from those gathered to our left. Napoli are slicing Chelsea open at will and have already mustered an incredible seven shots, several of which have been well saved by Petr Cech and one from Edinson Cavani slammed into the side netting. It is surely only a matter of time before Chelsea break through."
  • 18'
    Juan Zuniga steps inside Ivanovic and gets a shot away on his weaker right foot. It flies comfortably over but the Partenopei have been allowed several shots from outside the box now.
  • 15'
    Ramires lofts a through ball to Sturridge who is offside. Mata expertly finishes the Englishman's flick-on but to no avail.
  • 12'
    Maggio flashes a precise cross towards Edinson Cavani at the back post after exchanging a one-two on the right flank. The Uruguayan puts it into the side netting but Chelsea did not have an answer to the speed of that break.
  • 11'
    David Luiz puts the ball out for a corner as Lavezzi dashes down the right channel in search of a through ball.
  • 9'
    Marek Hamsik is allowed to turn and shoot on the edge of the box after receiving the ball from Ezequiel Lavezzi. The shot takes a deflection but finds its way into the arms of keeper Petr Cech. Lavezzi picked up a dangerous amount of space inside the left flank in the run-up to the effort.
  • 7'
    John Terry gives the ball away with a pass to Ramires that gets intercepted. The move breaks down, but punishing the other team situations like that are exactly how Napoli have gained their fearsome reputation for counter-attacking football. The Blues would be wise to avoid mistakes like that.
  • 5'
    Sturridge has made a bright start in the first few minutes after he gets his shot off early following a throw-in.
  • 4'
    Ramires has started on the left wing for Chelsea with a view to dealing with Maggio's substantial threat, with Juan Mata in the centre of the park behind lone striker Didier Drogba and Daniel Sturridge on the right.
  • 2'
    Juan Mata takes a freekick from the right flank, and John Terry heads wide from the edge of the box. It was a very difficult header and was an effort unlikely to result in a goal.
  • 1'
    And we're underway at the Bridge. It's an eventful first minute with Ashley Cole barging in to Napoli's right wing back Christian Maggio resulting in a free kick
  • Wayne Veysey Live at Stamford Bridge: The ground is in thunderous voice and looks a fabulous sight, with flags being waved all around the ground. The Napoli support are more than making their presence felt as they carry on where they left off in the Stadio San Paolo three weeks ago. There is a real sense of expectation from both sets of fans. Whatever happens, we expect goals. A 2-0 win is enough to send Chelsea through, but such is the calibre of the Napoli front three, a clean sheet looks a tall order.
  • Napoli: De Sanctis; Campagnaro, Cannavaro, Aronica; Maggio, Inler, Gargano, Zuniga; Hamsik, Cavani, Lavezzi. Substitutes: Rosati, Fernandez, Britos, Dossena, Dzemaili, Vargas, Pandev
  • Chelsea: Cech; Ivanovic, David Luiz, Terry, Cole; Ramires, Essien, Lampard; Sturridge, Drogba, Mata. Substitutes: Turnbull, Bosingwa, Cahill, Mikel, Malouda, Torres, Kalou.
  • Roberto Di Matteo will attempt to overturn a 3-1 deficit at home against the Partenopei, but must be on their guard in defence against a side who have won their past six games and require only one away goal to leave the Blues needing three.
  • Hello and Welcome to's live play-by-play of tonight's second leg encounter between Chelsea and Napoli at Stamford Bridge. I'm @arthurvirgo and you can get involved on Twitter @GoalUK or by the comments section below.