MX23RW : Monday, January 21 06:18:37

On this day: Chelsea advance beyond Fenerbahce

Back on this day in 2008, goals from Michael Ballack and Frank Lampard see Chelsea advance in the Champions League at the expense of Fenerbahce.

We told last week how Chelsea had left themselves with plenty of work to do to reach the semi-finals of the 2007-08 Champions League as they spurned an early advantage to lose 2-1 during the first leg in Istanbul to Fenerbahce.

The two teams reconvened at Stamford Bridge just a week later and six years ago today to conclude the tie, with the victor knowing that Liverpool awaited them in the last four.

With the draw in the Turkish side's favour, there were a few nerves among the Chelsea faithful prior to the clash, although they were settled within the opening four minutes of the first whistle.

Joe Cole swung over a cross from the right into the centre of the penalty area, where Michael Ballack was waiting to guide a downwards header across visiting goalkeeper Volkan Demirel and into the far corner of the net.

Michael Ballack scores for Chelsea against Fenerbahce on April 08, 2008.© Getty Images

Next to try his luck was midfielder Joe Cole, but having reacted quickly to inherit possession from Salomon Kalou, the England international saw his flicked shot cannon to safety off the upright.

The hosts were in buoyant mood, but that was altered midway through the first half when keeper Carlo Cudicini was forced off with a hamstring complaint. With usual number one Petr Cech still out due to a head injury, Hilario was required from the bench.

The Portuguese stopper was powerless just before the break as Diego Lugano rose highest to meet Alex's cross, but the Uruguayan defender couldn't keep his header on target.

Opportunities were created at both ends after the restart, but Chelsea frontman Didier Drogba was frustrated on three separate occasions by Demirel, while Colin Kazim-Richards, who scored in Turkey, stung Hilario's palms with a powerful strike from distance.

Chelsea's Frank Lampard celebrates scoring against Fenerbahce at Stamford Bridge on April 08, 2008.© Getty Images

At this point, the Blues were heading through on the away goals rule, but they made sure of their progression three minutes from the end when Michael Essien got to the byline, before sending in a low cross that was duly converted by Frank Lampard.

Speaking after the final whistle, winning manager Avram Grant said: "When you play in the quarter-finals, all that matters is reaching the semis. We needed to win and we did. In Turkey we played better than we did today, but the result was the important thing. We started the game well but we didn't carry it on and it got a bit nervous.

"I feel good because our target was to be in the semi-final of the Champions League and we did it. I said that we could do good things this year. Now we are close. So of course I am optimistic and I believe."

CHELSEA: Cudicini (Hilario); Essien, Carvalho, Terry, A Cole; Ballack, Makelele, Lampard, J Cole (Malouda); Drogba, Kalou (Belletti)

FENERBAHCE: Demirel; Gonul, Lugano, Edu Dracena, Wederson (Bilgin); Maldonado (Kezman), Aurelio, Kazim-Richards, Deivid, Alex; Senturk (Boral)

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Colin Kazim-Richards celebrates scoring against Chelsea for Fenerbahce on April 2, 2008.
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool23193154134160
2Manchester CityMan City23182362174556
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs23170648232551
4Chelsea23145440192147
5Arsenal23135548321644
6Manchester UnitedMan Utd23135546331344
7Watford239683232033
8Wolverhampton WanderersWolves239592731-432
9Leicester CityLeicester2394102929031
10West Ham UnitedWest Ham2394103034-431
11Everton238693433130
12Bournemouth2393113342-930
13Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2375112532-726
14Crystal Palace2364132332-922
15Southampton2357112540-1522
16Burnley2364132343-2022
17Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2356121931-1221
18Cardiff CityCardiff2354141944-2519
19Fulham2335152151-3014
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2325161340-2711

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