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9 November 2013
• Stamford Bridge, London
Referee: L. Probert
• Attendance: 41623
S. Eto'o 45'
E. Hazard 90'+
West Bromwich Albion
S. Long 61'
S. Sessègnon 68'
FULL-TIME: Chelsea 2-2 West Brom - the Baggies are cruelly denied of a historic victory, as questions will now be asked of Ramires following his controversial last-minute decision to fall down in the box. It may have been quite a soft penalty to give, but Reid should have not been so naive and instead tried to get across the Brazil international rather than go side-to-side with him. Anyway, that's all from me, Livio Caferoglu! Thanks for joining us today.
90' + 7'
Yellow Card Jonas Olsson
90' + 7'
Yellow Card Branislav Ivanovic
90' + 6'
Penalty Goal Eden Hazard
HAZARD RESCUES CHELSEA A POINT!!!!!!!! Ramires goes down in the box after Reid clattered into him, and the Belgian - as cool as you like - side-foots the spot-kick into the bottom right corner of the net, sending Myhill the wrong way. Mass chaos ensues between both sets of players!
90' + 5'
Yellow Card Gareth McAuley
90' + 5'
Yellow Card Chris Brunt
90' + 5'
Yellow Card Liam Ridgewell
90' + 4'
PENALTY TO CHELSEA!!!!!!!!!!!
90' + 3'
Ridgewell speeds down the left flank to fizz a low cross into the box with Cech coming off his line to hack away a loose ball, but the custodian makes enough ground up.
90' + 1'
Four minutes of injury time will be played, but it could have been game-set-and-match if West Brom made their counterattack *count*! They dash all the way to the other side of the pitch, but Morrison - after making mincemeat of Terry - smashes the finish over the bar!
Chelsea are awarded a corner with 30 seconds of normal time remaining. The set-piece causes all sorts of havoc in the West Brom box, as the visitors fail to clear their lines, and it ends up with Ba winning another corner to his team off Olsson.
Chelsea have struggled for any kind of consistency in the final third today, and it'll surely be playing on Mourinho's mind. They may have an embarrassment of riches in that area of the pitch, but the lack of cohesion should not be an excuse three months into the season.
Ridgewell has gone into central defence to make up a back-five, with Brunt being repositioned into left-back from his usual wing role. It looks to have worked a treat, as they double up on Willian and force the Brazilian into rushing his cross which deflects off the ex-Birmingham defender.
Yellow Card Morgan Amalfitano
Ramires theatrically wins Chelsea a free kick on the far left-hand side, but Mata's delivery is headed away by Ridgewell and can't be rescued by Willian.
A defeat would be a hugely underwhelming way to mark Mourinho's 100th home game in charge of the Blues today. They've definitely stepped up the intensity in the last few minutes, but is it too little too late? Keep on sharing your thoughts with us!
What a hectic few minutes! Time for a breather... or is it? Not in Willian's eyes as he incredulously misses a FREE HEADER!
BRAVO BOAZ!!! The Welshman somehow keeps out the ball from Ivanovic's point-blank half-volley, before one of his defenders block Ramires' attempt, despite the Chelsea fans convinced it had landed in the back of the net!
Azpilicueta has offered virtually nothing from the left-hand side in comparison to Ivanovic, who has been a constant threat throughout. He is deservedly replaced by Mikel, while Oscar - another player who has flattered to deceive - trudges off for fan favourite Mata.
John Obi Mikel
Oscar tries his best to infiltrate the West Brom box with a tantalising low ball into the box, but it's hacked away. Sessengnon looks to hit Chelsea on the counter again, yet this time Cahill eventually shakes him off in the centre-circle.
Chelsea seek an instant reply as Willian and Hazard interchange on the break and win their side a corner. However, the chance soon goes begging following another below-par set-piece.
Assist Liam Ridgewell
Goal Stéphane Sessegnon
SCRAP THAT, IT'S ANOTHER WEST BROM GOAL!!!! Incredible scenes in west London as Sessengon puts West Brom in the lead for the first time this afternoon! Ridgewell ghosts into the box after profiting from a Cahill slip before laying the ball off to the Benin star, who skins Terry before firing low and hard into the bottom left corner of Cech's net!
West Brom concede two corners in quick succession. They simply can't afford to be so wasteful with the ball if they are to return to the Black Country with something to show for their efforts.
Mourinho throws on another striker - Demba Ba - in place of Lampard, who admittedly hasn't had his best of games. It seems Chelsea have switched to a 4-4-2 system now, as they look to stretch their opponents.
Goal Shane Long
WEST BROM EQUALISE!!!!!!! Chelsea did not learn from McAuley's strong advances in the previous phase of play as he sends another header towards goal. Cech makes a fine save to deny the defender, but it spills out to Long for a routine finish. The scores are levelled with just half an hour of the match left!
Cech does just enough to put off McAuley in the air as his mere presence ensures the ex-Ipswich man can only place his powerful header high over the stanchion. That was a huge jump!
FLUID FOOTBALL AT ITS BEST... WELL, ALMOST! Hazard is the architect as he plays a series of one-twos with his team-mates before Lampard is found in space on the edge of the box, and the midfielder is desperately unlucky to see his dipping drive swerve *just* over the bar!
WEST BROM HIT THE POST!!! That was a mighty warning sign from the Baggies, as Long meets Amalfitano's inswinging cross and heads the ball onto the woodwork with Cech beaten!
Ramires tries to get the better of Yacob near the touchline, but the Argentine is no fool and gives his team some breathing space with the throw.
THE BAGGIES BEST CHANCE! The corner is fizzed into the middle of the Chelsea box, and Olsson sends a towering header just over the bar!
Ridgewell blasts a cross at Lampard to win his side a corner. The former Aston Villa stopper has been extremely solid today.
MUCH BETTER FROM OSCAR! The No. 11 picks out Hazard with a perfectly-weighted floated pass which meets the Belgian's left boot, but his touch is poor and it bounces off his shin for a goal kick. Very promising play indeed!
Willian is eased off the ball by Ridgewell for another West Brom throw. Quite why a diagonal pass was sent to the diminutive attacker in that position I do not know!
Long is penalised for a handball in the Blues' box after being adjudged to have taken down a pass illegally.
West Brom kick off the second period, and already they have a throw deep in Chelsea's half.
The players are back out for the second half. The restart is imminent!
HALF-TIME: Chelsea 1-0 West Brom - for a moment it seemed that the match was unfolding itself to be a repeat performance of last weekend's loss at St. James' Park, but a last-gasp finish from Samuel Eto'o - who showed fantastic awareness to read the rebound in an instant - surely puts the Blues into a commanding position ahead of the restart. Join us in 15 minutes for continued coverage!
45' + 3'
Yellow Card Shane Long
45' + 2'
Very stupid play from Long, who collects probably the most foolish yellow card I've ever seen. The Irishman thunders into the back of Terry, with the centre-back merely protecting the ball for his goalkeeper to pick up.
45' + 1'
Yellow Card Samuel Eto'o
Goal Samuel Eto'o
AND THAT'S MY SERVING OF HUMBLE PIE!!! Well, well, well... it's that boy Eto'o! Cahill launches a raking ball from deep and finds Hazard, who takes it down superbly before cutting inside with great venom and rifling a low strike at Myhill. However, the goalkeeper spills his stop to the striker, and he simply tucks in the rebound for 1-0!
West Brom are more than happy to sit back and soak up the Chelsea crusade, which is beginning to run out of steam now. It surely doesn't help that the crowd have quietened down considerably.
Hazard and Willian look at eachother in a daze as Eto'o's give-and-go is collected by neither player and harmlessly rolls off for a throw.
As many readers have picked up on in this first half, Oscar's play with the ball at feet has been impeccable, but it is his distribution and decision-making which is letting him down badly. Again he shifts the ball past Ridgewell effortlessly, yet his cross is far too deep and is easily headed out by Reid.
Willian is growing into this match as he embarks on another mazy dribble and whips in a cross which Yacob is equal to. Moments later, Ramires wins a corner for the hosts, but the former Shakhtar Donetsk ace's set-piece can't beat the first man.
Chelsea are cranking up the pressure here as they force West Brom into increasing submission. McAuley is the man who slips up in his own half, gifting Oscar the makings of a legitimate chance, but he simply shoots into the crowd.
Yacob seems to be adopting a more disciplined style now as he does well to shepherd the ball for a goal kick, with Oscar nipping at his heels.
CLOSE AGAIN FROM THE SET-PIECE!!! Eto'o looks to be in the mood this afternoon as he dances past Mulumbu to earn yet another free kick for his team. It's promptly taken by Lampard from the left-hand side, and Myhill must spring off his line to punch the ball away!
GREAT SAVE! Myhill makes a stunning reflex to tip the Brazilian's floated curling attempt wide of the post!
Yacob finally works his way into the ref's book following yet another deliberate trip to bring down an onrushing Hazard near his goal. What can Oscar conjure up here, I wonder... ?
Yellow Card Claudio Yacob
The Englishman atones for his previous error, this time nicking the ball off Mulumbu, and sets the tone for a counterattack which again breaks down at the last hurdle. Chelsea are surely getting closer to the first goal now!
Lampard receives the ball on the edge of the area from Oscar, but within a split-second he is surrounded by three West Brom players and subsequently squanders possession. Another Chelsea attack bites the dust...
Oscar does his bit in defence as he blocks a cross to award the Baggies a corner. Nonetheless, Ivanovic jumps highest to nod away Brunt's set-piece at the back post.
Willian - who is yet to impose himself on the encounter - finds Oscar with an exquisite diagonal ball, and the attacking midfielder in turn threads through Eto'o, but a free kick is soon awarded to West Brom following the ex-Anzhi man's shove on Olsson.
Cahill is quick to spot the danger on the right side of his area and puts the ball into touch. However, Brunt runs unopposed from the resulting throw and sends a low cross into Cech's gloves.
A floated cross arrives in the West Brom box, with the Baggies defence all at sea, but Eto'o can't steer his header on target and instead it flies high and wide over the bar.
Mulumbu is down after falling awkwardly to the ground. Cue an ominous look from Steve Clarke in the dug-out, but the defensive midfielder is upright within a few moments of the magic sponge being applied!
Yellow Card Frank Lampard
Yacob receives a warning from referee Lee Probert here as he clatters into the back of Oscar - his second foul of the afternoon after just 14 minutes of play. However, Lampard fails to capitalise from the free kick and is instantly shown the yellow card for cynically sliding into Long on the counterattack.
Another hopeful strike sees Brunt send the ball into the orbit. Chances are fast coming at a premium for the visitors, but just as I say that, Ramires gifts them a free kick central to the box, which ends with a Sessengon shoulder-charge and Chelsea back with the ball at feet.
The Cameroonian cracks another attempt towards Myhill, but the goalkeeper gathers the ball easily, with Olsson on hand to mop up.
Amalfitano picks up a loose ball near the Chelsea area and hits a speculative effort which is opportunistic at best, as it drags well wide of Cech's goal.
A ball is launched from deep by Chelsea, with Eto'o the intended target, but he cannot reach the pass, despite being ready on his toes, thanks to a strong defensive header.
Ivanovic is looking probing here, as again he marauds forward near the byline and wins a throw from Ridgewell, who is alert to the Serbian defender's advances.
Yacob is rash with a challenge and concedes a free kick on the right of the box in a potentially dangerous position, which Lampard takes and Mulumbu clears.
Oscar tries to exhibit some Brazilian flair in these opening exchanges with a Cruyff turn - only for it to result in a West Brom throw.
Ivanovic, from a deep position on the right-hand side, looks to find Eto'o in the box with a low cross, but it's hacked away before the striker can even make contact with the ball.
The match is under way, with Chelsea - who start proceedings - going from right-to-left.
A minute's silence to mark Remembrance Day has been completed, and the players are itching to get started out on the pitch. Let the games begin!
Chelsea fell five points behind Premier League leaders Arsenal last weekend, in no part thanks to their 2-0 defeat at Newcastle, but their victory in Europe may prove to be enough of a morale boost for today's visit of an in-form West Brom - unbeaten in their last five matches, including four points gained against Manchester United and Arsenal.
As well as the sidelined Frenchman, there's another considerable link between the two sides in the form of West Brom manager Steve Clarke. The former Scotland defender spent much of his playing career representing Chelsea and was Mourinho's assistant during the 50-year-old's first stint in west London.
For this afternoon's visitors, Billy Jones' injury allows Steven Reid to reclaim his spot at right-back. In midfield, Claudio Yacob is fit enough once more to take his rightful place alongside Youssouf Mulumbu. However, Blues old boy Nicolas Anelka misses out after not being given the green light to make his homecoming.
There's the small matter of Eden Hazard's return to the Chelsea fold after he missed their Champions League victory over Schalke midweek following a missed training session. Elsewhere, Cesar Azpilicueta - a right-back by trade - stays out on the left despite Ashley Cole's availability, while John Obi Mikel and Andre Schurrle are the other victims of Jose Mourinho's decision to revert back to his usual 4-2-3-1 set-up.
Last but certainly not least, it's the Baggies - who match Chelsea's system: Myhill; Reid, McAuley, Olsson, Ridgewell; Yacob, Mulumbu; Amalfitano, Sessegnon, Brunt; Long.
We'll start with the Blues, in their traditional 4-2-3-1 formation: Cech; Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta; Ramires, Lampard; Hazard, Oscar, Willian; Eto'o.
Hello and welcome to LIVE text commentary of the Premier League clash between Chelsea and West Brom! I'm Livio Caferoglu - the lucky soul entrusted with the responsibility of guiding you through all the action as it unfolds from Stamford Bridge. The team news is coming right up!
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