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MATCH REPORT: Bolton Wanderers 1-5 Chelsea

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Just a quick recap for now as I'll be busy most of the rest of the day - Chelsea put in probably their best performance of the season to rip through a fairly miserable Bolton Wanderers and win 5-1 at the Reebok Stadium, led by an inspired display from Frank Lampard, who notched a hattrick. The Blues were up 4-0 after half an hour and coasted to the win, despite a nervy period at the beginning of the second half which saw the hosts grab a goal back and threaten to expose Chelsea's defence.

It was all too easy for Chelsea, who earned a corner in the first minute after David Luiz found Daniel Sturridge on the right side behind Paul Robinson. His driven cross towards Didier Drogba was turned behind, but from Juan Mata's delivery the hosts left Sturridge unmarked and the young striker made no mistake in heading past a helpless Adam Bogdan.

Bolton reacted reasonably brightly, but as soon as Chelsea had the ball they looked a threat to rip open the match once more. So it was in the 15th minute, when a sublime team move ended with a sweet finish by Lampard. The assist will go to Sturridge on this, but more or less every outfield player was involved in the move - it's the sort of goal that wouldn't have been amiss at Arsenal, Barcelona, or the Louvre.

The next two were rather sloppy - Sturridge bouncing a shot in front of Bogdan that the Hungarian goalkeeper could only parry into the net at his near post, and then Lampard able to pick up and score after yet another Bodgan spill. Although both goals were directly attributable to goalkeeping mistakes, they both followed driving runs by David Luiz from the back.

It was 4-0 and Chelsea had made pretty easy going of it, but Bolton struck back immediately after halftime, with Dedryck Boyata heading home a free kick after a bit of a mixup in the visiting defence. I'm reliably informed that that was the first goal Chelsea have conceded at the Reebok since the Second Punic War. Anyway, the Blues were looking nervy, and Andre Villas-Boas made a couple of defensive changes to make sure his charges didn't pull an Arsenal, swapping in Branislav Ivanovic for Jose Bosingwa and then John Obi Mikel for Ramires, shifting Raul Meireles out from the holding role.

The best defence for Chelsea on the day, however, was attack, and the Blues added their fifth after more wonderful team play, this time involving Didier Drogba combining superbly with Lampard for the England midfielder's hattrick. At 5-1, the game was done (at 2-0 the game was done!) and the team was coasting, allowing the hosts to create some dangerous chances. Branislav Ivanovic was forced to clear off the line* from Kevin Davies and Petr Cech barely dealt with a dangerous drive from Chris Eagles, tipping the substitute's shot onto the post. Chelsea didn't mind too much, by that point, and eventually Peter Walton blew for full time without further damage being done.

*Yes, it actually went in. Oh well.

So yeah. 5-1. Not too bad a result, eh?

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