Live Commentary: Chelsea 2-0 Leicester City - as it happened

Cesc Fabregas of Chelsea controls the ball during the Barclays Premier League match between Burnley and Chelsea at Turf Moor on August 18, 2014
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Find out how Chelsea overcame newly-promoted Leicester City at Stamford Bridge with Sports Mole's text updates.

Chelsea played host to Leicester City this afternoon looking to build upon their victory on the opening day of the season against Burnley.

After a goalless first half, summer signgin Diego Costa broke the deadlock on his home debut, before Eden Hazard made sure of the outcome in the closing stages.

You can look find out how the contest unfolded in full with Sports Mole's text updates below.


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2.03pmAfternoon all. Well, the fixtures computer was kind to Chelsea, wasn't it? First up was Burnley and today they play host to Leicester City at Stamford Bridge. The chances of an upset appear to be slim, but this is the Premier League don't forget - anything can happen!

2.06pmBefore we talk about this match in a bit more detail, the team news has just been released. Let's start with the hosts...

2.07pmCHELSEA XI: Courtois; Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta; Matic, Fabregas; Schurrle, Oscar, Hazard; Costa

2.08pmCHELSEA SUBS: Cech, Zouma, Luis, Mikel, Ramires, Willian, Drogba

2.10pmUnsurprisingly, Jose Mourinho has opted not to tinker with his starting lineup from the one that took to the pitch against Burnley on Monday night. There are competitive home debuts for Thibaut Courtois, Cesc Fabregas and Diego Costa, while Oscar makes his 50th start for the club. Meanwhile, there is no Fernando Torres in the squad. Injured? Or is he perhaps on his way out of the club?

2.11pm

2.12pmAnd now for visiting Leicester...

2.13pmLEICESTER XI: Schmeichel; De Laet, Morgan, Moore, Konchesky; Mahrez, King, Hammond, Schlupp; Ulloa, Nugent

2.14pmLEICESTER SUBS: Hamer, Albrighton, Hopper, Taylor-Fletcher, Knockaert, Wasilewski, Wood

2.17pmHe may have come off the bench to rescue a point for Leicester against Everton last weekend, but it's not enough to earn Chris Wood a starting berth today. The New Zealand international remains on the bench, with David Nugent and Leonardo Ulloa preferred up front. Marc Albrighton has also been deemed fit enough for a place among the substitutes, but Danny Drinkwater and Matty James have missed out through injuries.

2.18pmWant a graphic of that Leicester starting lineup? Of course you do!



2.21pmSo, how do Leicester approach this match today? To use a phrase made famous by Chelsea boss Mourinho, will they "park the bus" and try to make things difficult for their hosts? Well, speaking to Sky Sports News just now, manager Nigel Pearson insisted that he wants his players to go out and express themselves:

"When you play against very good sides and they have the ball for so long, you end up defending a lot. We have to try to play our way. What I'm looking for from my players is that they give themselves the best chance of getting a result by keeping the ball and creating some chances. I've got a lot of faith in my players because they've worked hard to get here."


2.24pmAnd what of Pearson's opposite number Mourinho? Is he expecting his team to win this one comfortably like the bookmakers? Again speaking to Sky Sports News, he said:

"If I'm not wrong, they have one defeat in the last 28 or 29 matches in the Championship and then against Everton. Their mentality must be great so I don't expect anything but another tough match. It was a good performance [against Burnley] but not one for 90 minutes - we had some good moments."


2.30pmMourinho has also been speaking about Didier Drogba, who will play at Stamford Bridge as a Chelsea player for the first time since 2012 following his return this summer. The Chelsea boss has insisted that the Ivorian will get on the pitch at some stage: "He will play today. If we are not winning we have a gameplan with him."

2.34pmLet's also see what Drogba has had to say about West London homecoming, shall we? He told Sky Sports News: "It's amazing and I can't wait to be on the pitch and cheer with the fans. It's the same club with the same ambitions and desire to win titles, which is the most important thing. If we play the way we played against Burnley, we won't be too far away from the title."



2.39pmPREVIOUS MEETINGS: Incidentally, these two sides last met in London exactly 11 years ago today in what was Chelsea's first home encounter with Roman Abramovich as the club's owner. The hosts won that fixture 2-1 thanks to an own goal from Lilian Nalis and a debut strike by Adrian Mutu. Overall, of the 95 matches involving these teams, Chelsea have won 45 times to Leicester's 23, with 27 draws thrown in.

2.44pmSo, who is going to put another mark in the win column today, then? Here our the thoughts of Sports Mole's very own Matt Law, Barney Corkhill and Pascal Lemesre.


2.46pmNot sure if former Leicester frontman Gary Lineker is being serious here. You'd imagine this was tweeted very much with tongue planted in cheek:



2.51pmPREDICTION: The Sports Mole chaps have had their say on this match on the video below, but I'm also going to throw my opinion into the ring now. It's very hard to look beyond a relatively straightforward victory for the hosts. The crowd are bound the be expectant and you would expect the players to respond positively to that.. Let's say 3-0 to the hosts, with Diego Costa helping himself to a couple of goals.

2.56pmNot long now until we are off and running at Stamford Bridge. The players are just about to make their way out on to the pitch.

1 minKICKOFF! Leicester, attacking from left to right in the first half, get the action underway in a sunny West London.

3 minDiego Costa has just got on the ball for the first time down the left flank, but his route towards goal is blocked by a superb sliding tackle from Dean Hammond. The resultant corner is then comfortably punched to safety by Schmeichel in the Leicester goal.

6 minSome reason for optimism from a Leicester point of view as Nugent bursts down the left and then picks out Schlupp with a low cross. He cannot get the ball out of his feet quick enough, though, and the chance is crowded out by Gary Cahill. Even so, that's positive stuff from the away side.

9 minSchlupp's pace is actually causing Chelsea some problems in these early exchanges. It looks like Leicester's major tactic is to get the winger on the ball whenever they can, while he's also not allowing the Chelsea rearguard any time to settle in possession.

12 minCHANCE! The first meaningful sight of goal goes the way of Chelsea and Costa, but the angle was always against the summer signing from Atletico Madrid. He tried his luck anyway, but his low effort was always rolling wide of the target.

16 minAn action shot from Stamford Bridge courtesy of Leicester's official Twitter page:



20 minLeicester deserve plenty of credit for the way that they've started this match because they haven't just sat back and looked to soak up the pressure. They were obviously going to see less of the possession, but they've managed to keep the likes of Oscar and Eden Hazard quiet. That could quite easily change of course, but so far so good for the visitors.

23 minHe may not be the quickest, but there are few defenders that read the game better than Chelsea skipper Terry. Mahrez has just raced into the home side's box unopposed, but then he is met by Terry, who doesn't fall for his double step-over and makes a positive challenge, before clearing the danger. Top work.

28 minMore good defending, this time up the other end as Costa looks to cross from inside the penalty area. Konchesky is alert to the danger and slides in, winning a goal kick in the process because the ball cannoned back into the Chelsea striker and then bounced out of play.

30 minA big cheer has just rung around Stamford Bridge, but not because of a goal and not actually anything that happened on the pitch! It was for Didier Drogba, who has just left his seat on the bench to go through some stretches down on the touchline.

33 minSAVE! Fantastic work from Leicester's Mahrez, who wriggles free of Azpilicueta to work himself enough space for a shot 25 yards from goal. There is plenty of power and swerve on his effort, but Courtois's reputation as one of Europe's best goalkeepers was on show there as he got down well to parry the ball away from danger.

37 minCHANCE! We've just seen Hazard involved for the first time today and his influence almost resulted in a goal. It was his low pass inside that found Costa, who had pulled away from his marker. His shot from 12 yards out appeared to be heading for the bottom corner of the net, but Wes Morgan's superb block sends the ball behind for a corner.

40 minMahrez really is getting a lot of space down Leicester's right flank, but he's been wasteful on two occasions. First he tries to do too much when a shot would have been a better option and then moments later, his cross is far too deep and rolls out for a goal kick. He needs to make the most of those scenarios because Chelsea may well go on to punish those errors.

44 minAll of a sudden, Hazard has come to life and Chelsea are starting to move through the gears. The Belgian's cross from the left is dangerous, but Costa doesn't react quickly enough and Morgan is able to heard clear from four yards out.

45 minJust the one minute of stoppage time at the end of this first half.

45+1 minHALF-TIME: CHELSEA 0-0 LEICESTER

3.48pmThere goes the whistle and it's a case of job done so far for Pearson's Leicester. He'll be happy with his players, but the same can probably not be said for his opposite number Mourinho. It's 0-0 at the break.

3.48pmThere goes the whistle and it's a case of job done so far for Pearson's Leicester. He'll be happy with his players, but the same can probably not be said for his opposite number Mourinho. It's 0-0 at the break.

3.52pmChelsea just haven't moved the ball around the pitch quickly enough, which is making them easier to defend against. There has been very little of the slick play that we saw against Burnley on Monday. As a result, Costa is looking a little isolated as the lone centre-forward and you can see that he's getting frustrated. Having said that, there were signs towards the end of the half that Hazard was livening up, which if he continues that form in the second half, will change things.

3.54pmAs for Leicester, the only complaint Pearson might have is his side's use of the ball in the final third. Mahrez in particular has found himself in very good positions on occasions, but he's been like a hyperactive child in possession and wasted good openings. Defensively, Morgan and Moore have been solid, but they'll need to continue those concentration levels after the restart.

3.58pmIf ever a picture summed up that first half, it's the one below. Costa has been crowded out every time that he's been found by a teammate, making it a frustrating afternoon for the Chelsea frontman so far.



4.01pmSo, what can Mourinho change here? It hasn't really happened for either Oscar or Schurrle yet, so if he was looking to make a change, those two would be the obvious candidates. Perhaps a bit of flair from Willian might do the trick?

46 minRESTART! Chelsea get us back underway, with both managers resisting the urge to make a change. Big 45 minutes ahead.

50 minPOST! He barely had a kick in the first half, but Oscar has just gone agonisingly close to breaking the deadlock. His low shot from distance looked to be heading for the bottom corner, but the ball cannons against the base of the post. Then, moments later, Schmeichel is forced into a diving save to deny Ivanovic's header. I think it's safe to say that Mourinho sent a rocket up a few players during the break!

54 minSAVE! What an opportunity for Leicester and Nugent will feel that he should have scored. Matic loses the ball in front of the Chelsea defence and the visitors spring forward. The ball eventually finds Nugent, but his shot from 12 yards out is weak and is saved by the feet of Courtois. You have to take those sort of chances in the Premier League. Just before that, Leicester midfielder Hammond went into the book for a late challenge on Schurrle.

57 minSAVE! Oh dear Nugent - this is why he will never shake off the 'Championship striker' tag. A Chelsea corner is cleared and Schlupp speeds into the home side's half. His pass to Nugent is perfect and leaves the centre-forward one-on-one with Courtois. Some credit should go to the Chelsea keeper because he does well to stay big, but Nugent really should be scoring that. You cannot help but feel he's going to be punished for those two misses.

59 minSAVE! Meanwhile, up the other end, Ivanovic pokes a neat pass through for Fabregas. The angle is against the midfielder, who waits for Schmeichel to commit himself. Like his dad before him, though, the Dane stays big, which forces Fabregas to make his own mind up. He goes for a chipped effort, but the Leicester stopper is able to tip the ball over the bar. What a game this is turning out to be! End to end stuff.

62 minGOAL! CHELSEA 1-0 LEICESTER (COSTA)

62 minThat is how you do it, Nugent. Ivanovic does ever so well to get down the right wing, before cutting inside, taking two defenders with him. His pass drops for Costa, who with Schmeichel flying out bravely at him, manages to power a low shot into the centre of the goal. He scored on his debut and he now has a goal on his first outing at Stamford Bridge - he's already paying back that hefty fee!

65 minCHELSEA SUB: Having gone in front, Mourinho has moved to reinforce his midfield by taking off Schurrle and bringing on Brazilian international Ramires.

68 minLEICESTER SUB: Now it's Pearson's turn to twist as he hands a debut to winger Albrighton, who replaces the wasteful Mahrez.

70 minCHELSEA SUB: And another switch for Chelsea, let's hope that this doesn't hamper the flow of the game! It's one Brazilian for another as Oscar takes his leave, with Willian entering the action in his place.

72 minThere might another substitution soon because Leicester midfielder Hammond has gone down with what appears to be cramp. Normally players can run it off but he looks to be in quite a bit of pain.

74 minLEICESTER SUB: And Hammond has indeed ran his race. He's limped off and been replaced by veteran attacker Gary Taylor-Fletcher, who played in the Premier League with Blackpool three years ago.

77 minGOAL! CHELSEA 2-0 LEICESTER (HAZARD)

77 minThat should be game, set and match to Chelsea. You cannot let Hazard cut inside from the left flank on to his dangerous right foot and Leicester have just paid the price for doing that. His shot from 12 yards out is powerful enough to beat Schmeichel, who seemed to get down a little slowly. That's the Belgian's first goal of the season and has all but sealed the three points.

80 minCHELSEA SUB: Final change for Chelsea and it's a popular one as far as the home fans are concerned. Goalscorer Costa has gone off and he's been replaced by Drogba. Unsurprisingly, a massive cheer goes up.

84 minSAVE! Credit to Leicester because they are still plugging away. It's almost a debut goal for Albrighton as he cuts inside from the right and shoots powerfully, but the impressive Courtois manages to hold the ball at the first attempt.

86 minLEICESTER SUB: Final change for Leicester and it's the quiet Ulloa that exits the action, with Chris Wood taking his place in attack.

90 minThere will be three minutes of stoppage time at the end of this encounter.

90+3 minFULL TIME: CHELSEA 2-0 LEICESTER

4.52pmThere goes the final whistle and it has ended in a relatively straightforward win for Chelsea. Credit should go to Leicester, though, because they acquitted themselves well and can take a lot of positives from their performance today.

4.53pmThat is all we have time for from Stamford Bridge, but be sure to stick with Sports Mole throughout the evening for match reaction and analysis. Until next time, goodbye.

Swansea's Wilfried Bony celebrates after scoring his team's opening goal against Stoke on November 10, 2013
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