Newcastle end Chelsea’s unbeaten record

Newcastle 2 Chelsea 1

Chelsea’s 23-game unbeaten run ended as substitute Papiss Cisse’s second-half double earned Newcastle victory.

The Blues bossed possession and territory but Cisse turned in the first from close range after Gary Cahill’s error and the striker made it 2-0 on the break.

And although substitute Didier Drogba netted with a header after Steven Taylor was sent off, the hosts withstood relentless late pressure to ensure Jose Mourinho’s side lost for the first time this season.

The defeat, which potentially cuts Chelsea’s Premier League lead to three points if Manchester City beat Everton in the evening kick-off, was harsh on a Chelsea side who created the better opportunities throughout.

But ultimately they paid the price for scoring just once from 26 attempts, meaning a third defeat in four league games for Mourinho at St James’ Park.

Chelsea, with the more defensively minded John Mikel Obi selected to replace the suspended Nemanja Matic in midfield, looked composed and confident from the outset.

Willian sent a fierce low effort narrowly wide after a sweet move and Eden Hazard curled a shot well wide following an adventurous run from the halfway line.

The hosts did threaten on the break on a couple of occasions, with their best chance seeing Thibaut Courtois block Jack Colback’s close-range strike.

But the visitors continued to have the better of things.

Cahill headed over from a corner, Willian was just wide with another strike after a stunning Hazard run, Costa had a couple of decent strikes on goal and Oscar almost scored with a stunning overhead kick.

Newcastle’s hopes suffered a major blow when goalkeeper Rob Elliot was injured and was replaced by third-choice Jak Alnwick for the second half.

Soon after the resumption, Mikel missed a glorious opportunity from eight yards, heading an inswinging Cesc Fabregas free-kick wide from eight yards.

And within a minute the Blues were made to pay for their wastefulness when Cisse had the simple task of turning home Sammy Ameobi ‘s cross.

Mourinho immediately made changes, bringing on Andre Scurrle, and Didier Drogba and Filipe Luis soon after.

Schurrle went close with a fizzing strike and Drogba’s aerial threat and presence was clear as the Blues constantly pressed forward.

The Ivorian teed up a great shooting chance for Costa but his effort was blocked and with the pressure now non-stop, Hazard’s 18-yard strike hit the post.

It was the Magpies who netted though, Cisse stroking in a simple second on the counter-attack when the ball broke kindly to him as Courtis thwarted Ameobi.

With the game looking over, Chelsea were thrown a lifeline when Steven Taylor was sent off for a second yellow card and Drogba headed in the resulting Fabregas set-piece.

But although Costa almost found the net with a shot after more great work from Drogba and Luis tested Alnwick, the hosts held on.

Chelsea: Courtois; Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta (Luis 67); Mikel, Fabregas; Willian (Drogba 67), Oscar (Schurrle 61), Hazard; Costa.
Subs not used: Cech, Zouma, Ramires, Remy.

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