Chelsea hang on to beat Bees in derby


Chelsea were pushed all the way by Brentford but got the win they needed to return to the top of the Premier League.

Ben Chilwell fired in a terrific goal just before half-time in the first league derby between the clubs for 74 years.

After a quiet start, the hosts eventually grew into the game – and an instinctive volley by Bryan Mbeumo from eight yards out almost put them ahead in the 22nd minute, only for the striker’s effort to rattle the post.

The Bees largely restricted Thomas Tuchel’s outfit, who, despite a lot of possession, seldom threatened in the first half, other than a Romelu Lukaku goal ruled out for offside.

Mbuemo again, meanwhile, should have done much better only to fire an angled shot straight at Chelsea keeper Edouard Mendy.

Chelsea made the breakthrough in fine fashion a minute before the interval.

From an initial cross by Cesar Azpilicueta and a touch by Lukaku, the impressive Chilwell, unmarked, lashed home a superb left-footed shot which flew into the left-hand corner, leaving Brentford keeper David Raya helpless.

In the 74th minute, a frustrated Mbeumo struck the post again with a low shot as Brentford turned up the pressure.

Mendy bravely denied Saman Ghoddos and Pontus Jansson during a late Bees’ siege – and produced a fabulous save to tip away Christian Norgaard’s overhead kick.

Brentford: Raya, Henry, Pinnock, Jensen, Jansson, Norgaard, Canos (Ghoddos 72), Onyeka (Forss 66), Mbuemo, Zanka, Toney

Chelsea: Mendy, Chalobah, Christensen, Sarr, Azpilicueta, Kante, Loftus-Cheek, Kovacic (Mount 64), Chilwell, Werner, Lukaku