Blues are derby victors

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Crystal Palace made life difficult for the Blues at Stamford Bridge, with a first-half display of frustrating and thwarting in the lunchtime London derby… but the Blues finally got their reward for possession, pressure and persistence.
Two goals in the second 45 minutes lifted the mood for manager Frank Lampard, pictured above in his technical area. His irritation at Palace’s delaying tactics and time-wasting led to several pleas to fourth official Andrew Madley to try to speed things along.
With the second half seven minutes old, Willian – wearing the captain’s armband as Cesar Azpilicueta was on the bench in favour of young Reece James as right back – fed the ball invitingly to Tammy Abraham who spun round, surged forward and buried a fine shot in the net, past Vicente Guaita.
When Christian Pulisic made it 2-0 in the 78th minute, heading home a loose ball after sub Michy Batshuayi’s shot had been blocked by a defender, the game was safe.
The Eagles huffed and puffed, but never really laid a glove on Chelsea, who dominated this one-sided match.
It would have been even more convincing had Palace’s defence not been so well-marshalled by Roy Hodgson.
The 40,525-strong crowd, dozy in the first half, came to life in the second, serenading Gary Cahill (to the bemusement of visiting fans) to acknowledge his long contribution to Chelsea.
Ref Mike Dean (as seems the case so often) made so many picky interventions in the first half that it almost throttled the life out of the match, but that opening Abraham goal liberated a game which had threatened to be the dullest of the season so far.
Chant of the day: ‘Gary Cahill, he’s won more than you,’ to the Palace fans.