Chelsea frustrated as the Canaries cling on

Chelsea 0 Norwich City 0

Chelsea’s slim title hopes diminished further as they missed the chance to go top of the Premier League.

They hit the woodwork twice and both teams might have had a penalty at Stamford Bridge, where Jose Mourinho’s side endured a frustrating final home game of the season.

Their point does mean, however, that they are all but certain of finishing at least third and therefore guaranteeing a place in the Champions League group stage.

The hosts attacked from the off and John Ruddy comfortably saved an effort from Andre Schurrle before a mistake by Blues midfielder Nemanja Matic led to Martin Olsson being given a clear sight of goal.

Olsson went down in the box following contact from both John Terry and Ashley Cole as they flew into last-ditch challenges after Matic had given the ball away.

Having appealed in vain for a spot-kick, Olsson then gave Chelsea another anxious moment with a right-wing cross which just evaded Bradley Johnson.

At the other end, Terry headed straight at Ruddy from Willian’s corner.

Matic then atoned for his earlier error with a lovely pass through to Schurrle, who cut in from the left and side-footed beyond Ruddy and against the post.

Schurrle also tested Ruddy with another low shot which the Canaries keeper did well to hold.

Mourinho made a double substitution at half-time, bringing Eden Hazard and David Luiz on for Mohamed Salah and Frank Lampard.

Luiz almost scored a couple of minutes after the restart when his first-time strike from 25 yards hit the bar.

Norwich had another left-off when Chelsea were not awarded a penalty despite Alexander Tettey appearing to trip Schurrle in the area.

And the home fans again wanted a penalty after a wild challenge by Ryan Bennett on Hazard, but the offside flag had already been raised and replays indicated that no substantial contact had been made.

Norwich were largely pinned in their own half but might have nicked a goal on the counter-attack had Gary Cahill not produced a brilliant tackle to deny Robert Snodgrass, who was put through by Nathan Redmond.

As Chelsea attempted to dig out a winner in the final stages, Ruddy kept out a shot from Hazard and Schurrle fired wide.

City look likely to be relegated but defended resolutely and threatened in injury time, when stand-in keeper Mark Schwarzer dived to gather Johnson’s header.

Chelsea (4-2-3-1): Schwarzer; Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Cole; Lampard (Luiz 45), Matic (Torres 72); Salah (Hazard 45), Willian, Schurrle; Ba.
Subs not used: Hilario, Kalas, Van Ginkel, Eto’o.

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