Half-Time Report: Demba Ba hands dominant Chelsea advantage

Demba Ba hands Chelsea the advantage at half-time against West Bromwich Albion in the Premier League.

Demba Ba's goal has given Chelsea the lead at half-time in their Premier League meeting with West Bromwich Albion.

Chelsea interim manager Rafael Benitez gestures from the sideline during his side's match with West Brom on March 2, 2013© PA Photos

Ben Foster was called into action early in the contest as he was forced into tipping Oscar's shot over the crossbar following good work by Ba on the right side of midfield.

It was Petr Cech's turn to come to his side's rescue just minutes later when Steven Reid unleashed a free kick from 30 yards to sting the goalkeeper's fingertips.

Oscar was once again at fault for wasting a brilliant chance when the Brazilian could only head straight at Foster after finding himself in space inside the box.

Foster did superbly to keep out a deflected free kick from David Luiz but the corner that followed produced the opening goal as Ba reacted quickest to a Luiz header to tap in from close range.

Chelsea's confidence improved after Ba's goal and they could have added a second before the break, with Juan Mata drilling a volley just wide of the target from 20 yards.

West Brom's Peter Odemwingie in action on November 24, 2012
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City23202167175062
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd23155348163250
3Liverpool23138254282647
4Chelsea23145441162547
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs23135546212544
6Arsenal23116641301139
7Burnley239771920-134
8Leicester CityLeicester238783432231
9Everton2376102538-1327
10Watford2375113342-926
11West Ham UnitedWest Ham2367102941-1225
12Crystal Palace2367102133-1225
13Bournemouth2366112435-1124
14Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2366111939-2024
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2365122131-1023
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2358101729-1223
17Southampton2349102334-1121
18Stoke CityStoke2355132350-2720
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom23310101830-1219
20Swansea CitySwansea2345141435-2117
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