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Chelsea win away at Stoke


Chelsea beat Stoke 2-1 to keep their ten point lead at the top of the Premier League table.

Willian put Chelsea ahead with a clever free kick, but Stoke equalised with a penalty. Gary Cahill scored a late winner to secure all three points for Chelsea.

There were a number of players making milestone apearances in the Chelsea line-up. Cesar Azpilicueta, who was playing in a three-man defence with Cahill and David Luiz, was playing his 150th Premier League game. Thibaut Courtois was in goal.

Victor Moses, who was playing his 50th league match for the Blues, was on one wing, while Marcos Alonso was on the other. Nemanja Matic and N'Golo Kante played in midfield, while Willian and Pedro supported Diego Costa up front.

The Blues were without Eden Hazard, who was rested due to a small injury.

Both teams started strongly, but it was a Stoke mistake that led to the first goal. Alonso was fouled near the penalty area, in a perfect position for Willian to whip it into the box.

The Brazilian had a different idea and, seeing that the Stoke 'keeper was expecting a cross, fired in a shot to the near post that caught him completely unawares and went in.

Stoke were the next team to have the ball in the net, but the referee ruled the goal as disallowed due to a push on Azpilicueta in the lead-up.

A few minutes later, Stoke had a penalty, after Jon Walters went down in the box. The striker stepped up and beat Courtois with a powerful strike.

Diego Costa, Pedro and Willian continued to threaten the Stoke defence in the first half, while David Luiz made a vital tackle at the start of the second half to keep the score level.

Chelsea's first good chance of the second half was another free-kick. This time Alonso struck the ball, only to see it hit the crossbar and fly out.

Chelsea's victory again depended on Antonio Conte's brilliant substitutions. The Blues boss brought on Cesc Fabregas and Ruben Loftus-Cheek, and both were involved in the winner. Loftus-Cheek won Chelsea a corner, which Fabregas lofted into a dangerous area.

David Luiz won it and struck towards goal, but the ball was blocked. It bounced towards Cahill who struck it sweetly into the net.

The players, the bench and the away fans all celebrated the win, which puts them in good form going into the April 1st match against Crystal Palace!

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