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Played
December 26, 2012 3:00 PM GMT
Carrow Road — Norwich, Norfolk
Referee:‬ J. Moss‎
Attendance:‬ 26831‎
 
 
Juan Mata 38′
   
 
 

Player Ratings: Norwich City 0-1 Chelsea

Rafa Benitez's men gain ground on Manchester City a comfortable win at Norwich, with the hosts creating very few chances against a defensively-solid Blues side

By Ryan Benson at Carrow Road

  • Mark Bunn
    16
    8
    3.00

    Mark Bunn

    Could do little to stop Mata’s brilliant strike, but generally did well enough for the rest of the match, making good stops from Moses and Hazard.

  • Russell Martin
    7
    13
    2.50

    Russell Martin

    Back in the team for the injured Whittaker had did not play particularly badly, contending well with both Oscar and Moses, but found Cole a bit of a pain and did not offer much support to Snodgrass further forward.

  • S. Bassong
    10
    12
    2.50

    S. Bassong

    The better of Norwich’s central defensive pairing and he made a lot of clearances and did fairly well to keep Torres quite for much of the match. Showed some wayward passing and lost possession on occasion, however.

  • Michael Turner
    8
    18
    1.50

    Michael Turner Flop of the Match

    Looked like a catastrophe waiting to happen at times. Towards the end of the match, he gave possession away very cheaply at the back, but thankfully for him Chelsea could not capitalise.

  • Javier Garrido
    9
    11
    3.00

    Javier Garrido

    Showcased some pretty terrible passing early on, but improved quite quickly. At the back he did not have much to deal with as Chelsea rarely attacked down their right. He got forward whenever he could, but his crossing was not great.

  • Bradley Johnson
    6
    10
    2.00

    Bradley Johnson

    It was difficult to determine what he was actually supposed to be doing at times. Usually he is used as a shield in front of the defence, but on occasion he was following Luiz around to no effect whatsoever. His passing was accurate and positive, but far less impressive without the ball. Booked late on for diving and was taken off immediately.

  • Robert Snodgrass
    9
    13
    1.50

    Robert Snodgrass

    Had quite a battle on his hands up against Ashley Cole and ultimately lost it resoundingly. Did not beat his marker once and put in a maximum of three crosses all match.

  • Anthony Pilkington
    9
    14
    1.50

    Anthony Pilkington

    The former Huddersfield man has been on a rich run of form in recent weeks, but he could not do much up against Azpilicueta who dealt very well with him. He struggled to get crosses in and rarely beat the Spaniard.

  • Wesley Hoolahan
    13
    8
    3.50

    Wesley Hoolahan

    Saw plenty of the ball and generally evaded the attentions of Mikel and Luiz quite well, but his creativity was a little stifled. He showed plenty of energy and urgency, but Norwich’s other forward players often found themselves crowded, giving Hoolahan few options to find.

  • Alexander Tettey
    12
    11
    1.50

    Alexander Tettey

    One of the Norwegian’s poorer performances since his summer move from Rennes. He hassled and harried the Chelsea midfield, but had little effect against Luiz, while he passing was rather poor.

  • Grant Holt
    7
    16
    1.50

    Grant Holt

    There were no shortage of balls smacked up towards him, but the striker struggled considerably with Gary Cahill. The England international won a large number of the headers against Holt, marshalling him very well.

Substitutions

  • Jonny Howson
    8
    11

    Jonny Howson

    Replaced Johnson late on, but hardly had a touch.

  • Elliott Bennett
    9
    11

    Elliott Bennett

    Came on as Norwich chased an equaliser late on, but the ball hardly came out to him on the right.

  • Steve Morison
    8
    12

    Steve Morison

    Put on by Hughton to add numbers to the Norwich attack, however he spent most of his time running around in midfield

  • Petr Cech
    147
    12
    3.00

    Petr Cech

    The Chelsea goalkeeper had a quiet game at Carrow Road. In the first half he had virtually nothing to do, as Norwich failed to get a shot on target, while he was not much busier after the break.

  • Branislav Ivanovic
    157
    12
    4.00

    Branislav Ivanovic

    Some of the Serbian’s passing was comically bad, but thankfully for him and Chelsea Norwich did not punish them. Defensively, however, Ivanovic had a decent game, sweeping up anything that got past Cahill.

  • Ashley Cole
    147
    12
    3.50

    Ashley Cole

    Could not rest on his laurels as Snodgrass threatened to become a danger, but Cole had the better of their duel, halting the winger several times, even preventing the Scot tapping in at the far post in the first half.

  • David Luiz
    263
    19
    4.00

    David Luiz Top of the Match

    Various defensive calamities in his Chelsea career suggested he may be better suited to midfield and he has certainly taken to his new position with comfort. Against Norwich his passing was excellent and his driving runs were just as effective, but did not leave a gaping hole in defence as has happened before.

  • Gary Cahill
    148
    16
    4.00

    Gary Cahill

    The England international was potentially facing one of his more physical battles of the season against Grant Holt, but it ended up being far easier than he would have anticipated. Cahill won header after header, and produced several well-timed tackles. Good performance.

  • César Azpilicueta
    135
    12
    3.50

    César Azpilicueta

    Hardly endeared himself to the Norwich fans by diving, possibly twice, in the first half. Did not seem too interested in attacking from his right-back position, but defensively he was rock solid, keeping Pilkington very quiet.

  • Oscar
    155
    32
    3.00

    Oscar

    After his move from Internacional in the summer, Oscar nailed down a place in the team under Roberto Di Matteo, but Benitez does not seem so convinced. However, he got a start against Norwich and did alright without being spectacular.

  • John Obi Mikel
    129
    79
    2.50

    John Obi Mikel

    Although some of his passes were poor, gifting possession to Norwich, he kept Chelsea ticking over in the centre, moving the ball on just as soon as receiving it. Probably should have done more to shackle Hoolahan, however.

  • Victor Moses
    133
    115
    3.00

    Victor Moses

    The Nigeria international certainly has the confidence of Rafa Benitez and he looked dangerous again in Norwich. He produced some delightful flicks in the attacking third, dribbled well and passed with intelligence despite going quiet for stretches of the match.

  • Fernando Torres
    292
    60
    2.50

    Fernando Torres

    Seemed to be one of those days for Torres, as crosses, clearances and passes refused to drop kindly for him, while he also had shots blocked in the area. One cannot fault his effort for most of the match, but it took about 35 minutes to realised he was actually on the pitch.

  • Juan Mata
    213
    110
    4.00

    Juan Mata

    Very quiet in the early stages, but Chelsea’s awakening unsurprisingly intertwined with Mata’s late arrival. Opened the scoring with a great strike just before half-time and looked dangerous throughout. There have not been many more consistent players in the Premier League so far this season.

Substitutions

  • Nathan Ake
    99
    12

    Nathan Ake

    On in stoppage time for Mata, but didn’t have enough time to make an impact.

  • Frank Lampard
    110
    115
    2.50

    Frank Lampard

    On for the last 25 minutes or so, but was very quiet. Offered more in attack than Mikel, but still did not to a great deal.

  • Eden Hazard
    121
    110
    2.50

    Eden Hazard

    Had an extended cameo in the second half, but apart from a couple of mazy runs which went nowhere, he was quiet.

Results
 
Player Ratings
Tournament
Position
Ranking
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Luis Suárez Luis Suárez
Striker
Liverpool
29 0
Daniel Sturridge Daniel Sturridge
Striker
Liverpool
20 0
Yaya Touré Yaya Touré
Midfielder
Manchester City
18 6
Wayne Rooney Wayne Rooney
Striker
Man Utd.
15 2
Sergio Agüero Sergio Agüero
Striker
Manchester City
15 0