It's good to be the king (of Europe). And, right now, it's pretty nice to be the current king of the Premier League table. Chelsea made sure they remained atop the league on Saturday thanks to a mostly impressive 4-1 victory against Norwich City at The Bridge.
The performance wasn't without flaws, but there was indeed plenty to enjoy. Grant Holt gave the visitors a shock lead inside 11 minutes, but Fernando Torres quickly restored parity before Chelsea unleashed the dynamic duo of Eden Hazard and Juan Mata. Terror, and goals, ensued. Mata, in particularly, was fantastic on the day. Hazard and Frank Lampard joined Torres on the first-half score sheet, while Branislav Ivanovic capped the match in style in the second half. The fullback lashed a killer volley past Norwich goalkeeper John Ruddy at his near post following a wicked, but totally accidentally, scorpion assist from Mata to put this thing on ice.
With the result, Chelsea moved on to 19 points from seven league fixtures, four points clear of second-place Manchester City. The Blues have won four of four at home to start the term, which makes for seriously nice reading. Now, on to some initial thoughts on the match.
- Give Mata a bit of rest and look what happens. A pair of super displays in a row. Today, he looked to be in charge of an elite symphony. The maestro at work.
- John Terry did not move particularly well throughout in the first half. The trouble appeared to start just before Holt provided the breakthrough. He recovered to have a decent second half, but as with Terry, we don't know just how injured he is because he always soldiers through. This is something that bears watching in the coming days.
- We didn't close down the flanks well at all in the first half. Seeing as Norwich possess a rather large, physical striker in Holt, this was not a great idea. Something to think about going forward.
- Speaking of Holt, the striker has the mug of a bare-knuckle boxer. Coincidentally, he plays his football like one. That being said, he may not have a tremendous array of technical skills in his locker, but he does use the ones he possesses with lethal efficiency. The man's a bruiser - ask Ramires.
- What a lovely second half that was. We couldn't have asked for a more comfortable 45 minutes ahead of what surely will be much more taxing matches in the coming weeks.
Onwards and upwards then, friends. Don't forget to vote in the community ratings and then tell us what you thought of the match in the comments section. Up the Chels.