Chelsea switched to 4-3-3 and handed out an almighty battering to the Indonesia All-Stars, beating our hosts in Jakarta by the rather impressive score of 8-1. This friendly was the final game of the Blues' Asia tour, and we couldn't really have asked for a better one -- it was a night where almost everything went perfectly -- Demba Ba, Ramires, Eden Hazard and John Terry all got their first goals of the campaign and the defence was only threatened after the match had already been well won.
Although the Indonesian All-Stars started the game brightly, taking full advantage of the Blues struggling to get to grips with a not-so-grippy pitch. Victor Moses and Ramires were clearly having difficulties, with some horrendous touches and turnovers putting pressure on the back line. It wasn't anything that the defence, shielded well by Nathaniel Chalobah, couldn't handle.
Slowly the Blues managed to get some chances in. Hazard was doing mean things to the Indonesia defence whenever he received the ball, firing in a couple of shots, and it took a miracle from goalkeeper Kurnia Meiga Hermansyah to keep Ramires' close range header out. But eventually class would tell, and Chelsea went ahead from the penalty spot.
John Terry went in for two bites of the apple from a corner kick, and as he picked up the ball for his second go he was subjected to a flying karate kick from a rather over-enthusiastic defender. The referee blew for a foul immediately, and Hazard sent Meiga the wrong way with his eyes before slotting home for the game's first goal.
Chalobah, who was impressing in midfield, then hit the post with a precise left-footed effort after a Moses dummy. Wallace matched the teenager's effort by cracking the other upright after Hazard had run through the Indonesia centre. At the other end of the pitch, Jamal Blackman was a virtual spectator as the young goalkeeper stood around waiting for the Blues to score again.
It was inevitable that they would, although Ramires seemed an unlikely scorer. Hazard traumatised Indonesia's right back before scooping a pass to Ryan Bertrand, whose awkward flick ended up finding the Brazilian. He hit the ball on the turn, and it went scorching into the roof of the net.
Ramires nearly scored in similar fashion seconds later, drawing a sprawling save from Meiga with the outside of his right foot after Hazard picked him out in the box. Unfortunately for the hosts, the ball bounced straight to Demba Ba, who slotted home for his first goal of the preseason.
The fourth waited until injury time. Ba won a free kick out on the right, and Bertrand swung in a lovely delivery that was met by Gary Cahill and then helped into the back of the net by Terry. Chelsea should probably have had more by then -- earlier Terry had combined with Hazard to send the Belgian clean through only for him to dawdle in rather un-Hazard fashion and get dispossesed, looking rather silly. Not that it really mattered at 3-0 up, though.
If there was any sense that the Blues would take their foot off the gas with such a commanding lead, Bertrand Traore immediately dispelled that notion by curling in an absolutely beautiful effort from the edge of the box, opening up his hips to send a shot into the top corner.
Romelu Lukaku would get into the thick of things shortly thereafter, rising above the defence to nod home a cross from Hazard, and then Ramires answered any critics by finishing off a counterattack with a lovely shot from outside the area -- Lukaku was the provider this time.
Josh McEachran, Islam Feruz and Lucas Piazon all came on after the seventh goal, and the latter immediately notched an assist when his cutback was swept past Meiga by Lukaku for his second on the night. Indonesia finally managed a reply when Tomas Kalas made a mistake in the box by diving in on Greg Nwokolo. The young defender was then was made to pay by deflecting a low cross into his own net to make it 8-1. It wasn't much consolation, mind -- Chelsea were still well on top.
Meiga denied Lukaku a hattrick after the striker got on the end of a lovely Ashley Cole delivery, and as it turned out that would be the Blues' last real chance. The final fifteen minutes were mostly sleepy ones -- Chelsea were more than happy with their eight-goal haul and the Indonesia All-Stars were rather realistic about their chances of significantly reducing the deficit.
And so the game ended 8-1. Not a bad way to end the tour, really.