Chelsea came from behind to beat West Brom at Stamford Bridge to give new manager Andre Villas Boas his first competitive win as the Chelsea manager. Second half goals from Nicolas Anelka and Florent Malouda sealed the victory for the Blues.
After the opening day draw against Stoke, Chelsea manager Villas Boas was under pressure to deliver a good result in front of his home fans. There opponent this time was West Brom who were unlucky not to get a point out of the last game against Manchester United at Hawthorns. They set out with the same team which faced the current champions. Things didn’t start well for Chelsea as Shane Long latched onto a mistake by Alex and put the ball past Hilario into the back of the net. The clock showed 4 minutes and things were already looking gloomy for the new manager. West Brom were well drilled and gave no space to the Chelsea players. Despite having most of the position Chelsea created almost nothing in the first half. It was evident that Chelsea were rattled. Villas Boas even made a change in the first half to change the way of the game. Florent Malouda came on for Solomon Kalou when it was just 33 minutes played. In the mean time West Brom squandered a glorious opportunity to go 2 goals up. Shane Long failed to pick out Tchoyi inside the box with his cross and Chelsea were let off the hook. It took Chelsea nearly 40 minutes to get a proper shot on target. It was Ashley Cole who tested Ben Foster with his long range effort. At the end Alex tried to blast one free kick but Foster managed to gather it despite the ball deflecting twice. Poor performance in the first half things needed to change for Chelsea.
Chelsea started off the second half positively. They were creating more opportunities and were causing West Brom defenders problems. Chelsea’s attacking approach finally paid off on 53rd minute when Anelka put the ball in the net. The shot was deflected of the legs of defender Jonas Olsson and the ball went past Foster. Chelsea seemed to have found their lost belief after scoring the goal. Suddenly they started playing well and waves of Blues attack continuously splashed on the West Brom box. It was Chelsea who were looking more likely to win the contest from there on. Villas Boas brought Drogba on for Torres and Ivanovic for Alex. The visitors were felling the pressure and Anelka almost scored when Ben Foster opted to sprint 30 yard out of the box to stop him. With just 7 minutes to go, Jose Bosingwa’s beautifully floated cross from right wing was tapped home at the back post by Florent Malouda to make it 2-1 for Chelsea. Though Chelsea never looked convincing throughout the game but they manged to hold on to the lead till the final whistle.