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Newcastle United 3 Chelsea 2

Newcastle United 3 Chelsea 2

Chelsea slumped to an away defeat at Newcastle United today, as Demba Ba's return to his old club was marred by injury.

Jonas Gutierrez headed the Magpies ahead late on in the first half after some lacklustre defending by Chelsea, and two brilliant second half goals from Frank Lampard and Juan Mata were not enough to earn the Blues a win.

Demba Ba started up front on his return to St James' Park, and John Terry made his first league appearance since early November.

Ryan Bertrand's run in the side continued, starting on the left flank in place of the suspended Eden Hazard, and Petr Cech returned to the starting line-up.

Newcastle started brightly, preventing Chelsea from imposing themselves early on. Davide Santon had a long range effort on goal but Petr Cech saved it easily.

Chelsea had to wait until the 9th minute for a decent spell on the ball, and the Magpies continued to make life tough for the Blues. Demba Ba's first touch was greeted by a chorus of boos from the home crowd.

Ashley Cole created Chelsea's first chance of the game, Juan Mata picking him out with a lofted ball as he made a run into the box before cutting the ball back into the path of Frank Lampard, who shot tamely over the bar.

Newcastle began to sit deeper and stand off, allowing Chelsea to work their way into the game.

Oscar had an effort from range in the 18th minute, but didn't trouble Toon keeper Tim Krul as he blasted the ball high.

Papiss Cisse soon tested Cech from the edge of the box, the linesman failing to spot an obvious offside run from the Senegalese striker.

Newcastle had a solid spell of possession in the final third, but their efforts came to nothing as Santon shot wide. Ashley Cole was the next Chelsea player to draw the ire of the local supporters, who subjected him to a round of heckling.

Chelsea were soon on the front foot, Bertand and Cole working the ball on the edge of Newcastle's box and managing to win a corner. Mata's delivery found Ivanovic, but the set piece came to nothing and referee Howard Webb failed to spot a handball by the Serb.

Newcastle broke quickly, but a succession of poor crosses from Gutierrez and Gouffran failed to test Chelsea's defence. Sissoko blasted the ball over the crossbar in the 27th minute.

Ramires was lucky to escape a red card after a two footed tackle on Guitierrez, Howard Webb only deeming the offence worthy of a yellow, provoking an angry response from Alan Pardew who marched onto the pitch to remonstrate.

Lampard played Demba Ba through on goal in the 31st minute with a lofted ball. Ba sped past Coloccini and shot into the path of Krul, he met the rebound with a headed effort but found himself on the end of a high boot by Collocini.

Webb failed to spot the blatant kick to the face, denying Chelsea what should have been an obvious penalty kick. Ba was ushered off the pitch by Chelsea's medical staff, blood pouring from his nose, and Newcastle fans yet again booed their former favourite.

Petr Cech came up with a good save in the 35th minute, denying Cisse who should have made more of the chance. Ramires took a knock after an aerial tussle with James Perch.

Demba Ba returned to the pitch with his nose taped, looking dazed, and the St James' Park crowd continued to heckle him.

As half-time approached, Newcastle pulled in front via the head of Gutierrez in the 40th minute. Ivanovic failed to shut down Davide Santon, who delivered a brilliant cross for the Argentine to head home.

Rafael Benitez opted to bring Demba Ba off as he continued to look out of sorts, Fernando Torres coming on in his stead.

Newcastle had a late opportunity via a corner as the half moved into injury time, Chelsea failed to clear the decks and were saved by Ryan Bertrand's diving block into the path of Sissoko's shot.

The Magpies closed out the half on top, leaving Chelsea with much to do in the second.

Benitez refrained from making any changes as the second half got under way. News filtered through concerning Demba Ba's injury, which was confirmed to have been a broken nose.

Chelsea began the half positively and won an early corner, but couldn't make the opportunity count.

Frank Lampard conjured up a spectacular goal in the 54th minute to pull Chelsea level. His shot from distance was a beautiful looking one, and the flight of the ball left keeper Krul with no chance to stop it.

Howard Webb failed to reprimand Papiss Cisse for a blatant elbow to John Terry's face in the 60th minute; as the play continued, Juan Mata served up a beautiful goal to put Chelsea ahead after a lay-off inside the box from fellow Spaniard Fernando Torres.

Mata's strike was masterful, beating Krul and curling into the top left-hand corner.

Webb delivered another baffling refereeing decision, sanctioning both Ashley Cole and Papiss Cisse with a yellow card after the Newcastle front man bizarrely put his hand around the throat of Cole.

Chelsea were now in the driving seat, dominating possession and dragging Newcastle around the pitch. The Blues pushed forward in search of a third, but Pardew's side soon found a way back into the game.

Gouffran broke past Chelsea's high line and sprinted through on goal, he dispatched an effort which Cech parried away but the rebound fell into the path of Sissoko, who promptly slotted the ball home into the empty net.

Juan Mata looked lively as we looked to get back in front, single handedly winning a corner after some fantastic dribbling inside the Newcastle box.

The Toon had another golden chance on the break as Sissoko beat Ashley Cole and made a run through on goal, but Cech tipped his shot wide.

Rafael Benitez got involved in a spat with Alan Pardew on the touchline, after Howard Webb failed to pick up a foul by Cabaye on Oscar.

Mata again looked to carry Chelsea forward, going on a fantastic run and managing to hold off Coloccini who was snapping at his heels.

Newcastle continued to soak up every Chelsea attack, and Sissoko was again at the forefront as they looked for a way to pull ahead on the counter.

Alan Pardew made his first change of the match in the 83rd minute, replacing Gouffran with Sylvain Marveaux.

Chelsea failed to make the most of a late free kick from distance. Ramires made an awful decision and shot well over the bar from a long way out.

The Magpies went ahead as the match entered the 90th minute, Davide Santon getting the better of Ivanovic as he dribbled into the box, laying the ball off for Sissoko who fired a shot past Cech.

Juan Mata took a yellow card for the team in the 2nd minute of stoppage time, breaking up a dangerous looking Newcastle attack with a foul.

Pardew tapped at his watch impatiently as the game wound up; Chelsea had a late appeal for a penalty turned down and Howard Webb soon blew his whistle to signal the end of the match.

A disappointing afternoon for Chelsea, things could have been oh so different had Howard Webb spotted what was a blatant foul on Demba Ba inside the box in the first half.

Newcastle, however, deserved their victory on the back of an impressive performance, putting Petr Cech under pressure time after time as they rained in a number of shots on target.

Chelsea: Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Cole, Ramires, Lampard, Oscar, Mata, Betrand, Ba (Torres 41).

Unused substitutes: Turnbull, Ferreira, Marin, Azpilicueta, Benayoun, Ake

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:Lofty 1905
Date:Saturday February 2 2013
Time: 5:50PM


Cheers Lofty, very much appreciated.
02/02/2013 17:54:00
Now who are we going to blame for this loss?you can say rafa if you want but my blame goes to the BOARD,rafa said he needed more bodies and that the squad was thin but the board chose to ignore him because he isn't in the long term future of CFC,the truth is apart from the fact that we are ineffective in attack with torres on the pitch,the defence was so unprotected,romeu is out injured and mikel away at south africa,the board chose to improvise and use either ramires or luiz as a holding midfielder!!!....newcastle's second goal,terry miscaculated,gouffran was left alone with cahill,we all know that if mikel was present he would have either chased gouffran and free cahill to stick with sissoko or sticked with sissoko while cahill chased gouffran...the third goal,sissoko was free just at the edge of the box,I asked myself why?where was ramires that was to shield the defence?sissoko played behind the striker and it was our holding midfielder's role to close him down but where was he?Ramires can't be a DMF,he lacks the positional discipline as a DMF but the board chose not to sign a DMF who could shield the defence,we concede so many goals not because our defence is bad but because the pressure is just to much for them to hold and that's why a DMF is important in a team but the board chose to ignore the importance of a DMF,we will keep conceeding lots of goals until mikel gets back,he is our only hope now....there is this saying that we won't value what we have until we loose it,I guess mikel critics would agree that even if he offers nothing attacking wise but he does a lot defensively...its all the board's fault...
02/02/2013 17:56:00
Drogba will do everything to beat nigeria, he knows that we need our players back, so he will it is all.
02/02/2013 18:00:00
Like I have said before, its bcos of players like Iva that Roman made the 1 year contract for 30 year olds bla bla...i have said it before, we should sell in the summer if a decent offer comes in...he is now a lot slower and the seria A will probably suite him better...he'll be a sentiments here...he should be sold...and not bcos of today's match....his performaces this entire season has not been per chelsea, we'll be fine...after today's match..things will get better...Hazard will be back..togther wilth Mikel and moses...and after international break...Luiz will be back as well.....thats four players...I am still quite optimistic....m not factoring tubby into my thinking at I dont know if he will be sacked or not....I expect the players to play for the badge....we'll see.....wigan next..!!!!..
02/02/2013 18:05:00
just sack rafa cant take it more of his disgustted sheet here at chelsea...hope by tommorow morning i get to hear a good news of rafa getting sack....
02/02/2013 18:09:00
Not a problem merlin, sorry for being a bit late on parade today!
Lofty 1905
02/02/2013 18:10:00
^^^my assumption about Mikel and Moses is that Nigeria will loose tomorrow...thats what I as soon as tuesday we will have more bodies...
02/02/2013 18:10:00
we hadn't lost at Newcastle for years....then we went with a tactical genius called rafa...
02/02/2013 18:11:00
Roman doesn't like youth players, he doesn't like bargain buys. He doesn't like having a complete squad. Every season there positions that need players. He never sorts it out. CMs and a striker are needed but he ignores that.
02/02/2013 18:13:00
Benitez has to go yada, yada, yada but how the hell can a player kick another player in the face, break his nose, not get the ball and it is not a penalty never mind a red card? Brana got sent off against Man Utd for brushing into the back of Ashley Young for god sake!
02/02/2013 18:19:00
If Azpilicueta had played instead of Ivanovic we would have won because we played some fantastic football.Oscar was superb on the right and would have had two pens if he had gone down.
02/02/2013 18:22:00
mikel is slow, mikel plays wide passes, mikel cant tackle well, mikel dont score but now you can see what mikel can do critics
02/02/2013 18:26:00
Of course it was a red card, but we can't look to that moment as an excuse for conceding two goals after taking the lead. And Rafa's unwillingness to make substitutions--or to play an actual winger at LW--is quite unbelievable. We're sloppy as a unit and our defense is a mess. Newcastle deserved the win--not because they're a better side--but because CFC made them look it today. That's the most frustrating part. We aren't performing at 25% capacity. I truly believe that.
02/02/2013 18:26:00
Saw a few post on the Match day thread about Marin...Don't tell me this crap about Marin not being strong enough for Newcastle,that's utter crap...So I guess Bertrand is a Bison on the wings then. Anyone who has seen Marin within the last few games will notice the lad has been played on the right,he's not a crosser,he loves to cut in from the left unto his right foot and attack full backs. If we wanted an option attacking wise then Bertrand should have been taken off for Marin. I refuse to believe that crap about the lad not being good enough,he is being played out of position and needs game time to get back to full fitness. I watched Marin in the reserve game,where he played on the left and had a lovely game coming back from injury. As for Iva,he had one of the poorest game I've seen him play at RB in a while,his pace got exploited time and time again,unsurprising 2 of their goals came from his wings.
02/02/2013 18:26:00
Good point CobhamBlue...that was a penalty
02/02/2013 18:28:00
I agree about Marin. There is nothing that Bertrand offers that warrants Marin's exclusion from playing his preferred position. Rafa's tactics are negative and the squad is playing not with confidence but with a fear of losing.
02/02/2013 18:28:00
I am just disgusted...from top to bottom...***** poor organization with a non-motivated manager with a team that lacks urgency...Lets see...Owner that controls everything with a bunch of number crunchers and Yes men on the board...a technical director (Emenelo) in way over his head..No organizational strategy or long term plan...players that are loaned out that are significantly better that the players currently on the team...A manager that knows that he will be out this summer that doesn't care if the team looses because he will just say the board didn't listen to him...a team that gives the manager no respect and has the same attitude...doesn't owner that forces the manager to play Torres...which the players know and thus do not respect him...Torres plays like ***** but he knows it doesn't matter because everyone knows the owner is forcing the manager to play why does he care??? An organization that has three #10 players (Mata, Oscar and Hazard) all playing up front with only one true winger...An organization that got raped when they purchased Marco Marin...not hating on Marin.. but come on...did anyone really believe he could play in this league? This is so ***** poor that the manager has to play a LB Bertrand on the wing becaues he can't trust Marin...An organization that loaned out KDB because they believed Marin was better...a manager that has no option in the pivot so he is forced to play Lampard and Ramires which are two box to box midfielders that are not good enough..they cant controll the midfield, they can't pass the ball, they cant defend and they are not the 2nd half today Mata was coming back to collect the ball...oh yes...lampard is up attacking in the box...THis is why we get beat on the counter so often...Everyone in the whole wild world understands this so why is Oscar not playing in the pivot? The manager runs out the same old 4-2-3-1 losing formation with the same Lampard/Ramires/ are you supposed to score goals with this lot...there is no creativity on the field...This team lacks heart...this team lacks desire and the owner has *****ed up this team from day one by insisting to play Torres...and by sacking manager after manager and by not allowing any outside player personel imput...Just a *****ed up situation from top to bottom...I really don't believe they will finish in the top four...For the league games play BA at CF Torres on the right with hazzard on the left with oscar and luiz in the pivot... or change the *****ing formation to 4-3-3 if you have to play either lampard or ramires...what a ***** poor run organization....At this point the manager should be sacked and get someone that will put his foot up the ass of about half the team...and for god's sake get rid of the *****ing 4-2-3-1 formation because lampard/ramires is soo much better than Josh Mceachran....tell my when next season starts....disgusting and ***** poor....
02/02/2013 18:28:00
Nobody understands Rafa's infatuation with Bertrand. It makes no tactical sense.
02/02/2013 18:30:00
im sorry Nigerian fans but I hope Didier and co eliminate your team tommorrow.We desperately need Moses and Mikel like yesterday.
02/02/2013 18:36:00
When Mikel comes back in the pivot we shall see if we are any better defensively i.e. we don't concede once we go up 1-0 or we don't concede on the counter.
02/02/2013 18:38:00
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