Chelsea easily see off 10-man West Brom

Chelsea 2 West Bromwich Albion 0

Diego Costa grabbed his 11th goal of the season as Chelsea coasted to victory against 10-man West Brom.

Costa’s neatly taken volleyed opener rewarded early Blues dominance in front of a noisy home crowd and Eden Hazard’s deflected strike made it 2-0.

The away side’s slim chances of a comeback then all but ended when Claudio Yacob was sent off for jumping into a challenge on Costa before the break.

Chelsea were camped in the West Brom half in the second half and created several chances, but were unable to add to their goal tally against a side who looked to avoid a mauling.

A sixth consecutive home league win had looked inevitable after an impressive start in front of a lively crowd who seemed to respond to manager Jose Mourinho’s call for a better atmosphere.

John Terry almost opened the scoring with a close-range shot from a well-worked short corner, before Costa set Chelsea on their way, controlling Oscar’s left-wing cross and instantly firing in.

The excellent Oscar almost made it 2-0 with a swerving effort after great work by the equally impressive Hazard, and Costa missed a glorious chance when he sliced wide from a Branislav Ivanovic cross.

Hazard did double the lead when quick thinking from Cesc Fabregas, who started despite hamstring concerns, teed up the Belgian from a corner.

Yacob’s 29th-minute red card for an ugly challenge on Costa left the visitors with little option but to put bodies behind the ball and it led to an improved showing – albeit with practically no goal threat.

The Chelsea onslaught continued after the interval with Nemanja Matic volleying just over the bar from Oscar’s cross and Willian going close with a fiercely struck cross that almost deflected in to the net.

And although the half-chances continued to be created in a one-sided match that was more like a training session, Chelsea were unable to find further goals.

Chelsea: Courtois; Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta; Matic, Fabregas; Willian (Ramires 86), Oscar (Remy 79), Hazard; Costa (Drogba 84).
Subs not used: Cech, Zouma, Filipe Luis, Schurrle.

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