Lampard nets late winner for Chelsea

Wolves 1 Chelsea 2

Frank Lampard’s last-gasp winner gave Chelsea a dramatic victory at Molinuex.

The midfielder volleyed home Ashley Cole’s fine cross to secure the Blues’ first win in five matches and relieve the pressure on manager Andre-Villas Boas.

Ramires netted the opener following Juan Mata’s corner, but Wolves seemed set for a point when Stephen Ward lashed in an equaliser from Steven Fletcher’s cross.

But Lampard had the final say, giving Chelsea a deserved three points – and an encouraging start to the new year after a troubled end to 2011.

He was arguably fortunate to still be on the pitch at the time, having escaped with only a yellow card after a reckless challenge on Wolves winger Adam Hammill midway through the first half.

Villas-Boas restored Lampard and Fernando Torres to his starting line-up and both players looked lively during a first half Chelsea dominated, although they came close to going behind when Roger Johnson headed against the post seconds before an unmarked Darren Ward headed narrowly wide.

And Wolves were left to rue those misses – and their failure to clear Mata’s corner – when Ramires fired Chelsea ahead eight minutes after the interval.

Ramires almost scored a second goal when he was denied by keeper Wayne Hennessy, whose save seemed to have proved crucial when Ward hauled Wolves level.

But Lampard capitalised on a great delivery from Cole to restore Chelsea’s lead, before Petr Cech secured the points by producing a brilliant save to keep out Kevin Doyle’s header at the other end.