STOKE CITY 0, CHELSEA 2
Manchester City were interested onlookers as Chelsea regained a three-point lead at the top of the Barclays Premier League following their hard-earned win at Stoke City.
City had drawn level with Chelsea following their home victory against Crystal Palace on Saturday, but Chelsea’s fixture at the Britannia Stadium was moved to Monday to be televised live.
John Terry’s early headed goal – little over 90 seconds into the match – provided the perfect start for Chelsea who never relinquished it after a superbly disciplined performance.
Diego Costa ought to have doubled the lead in the opening period as he shot wide after finding himself clean through on goal.
Stoke’s only chance in the first half was a shot from Steven Nzonzi which was well saved by Thibaut Courtois after it took a massive deflection.
Chelsea were only occasionally threatened in the second period, their best chance came from substitute Charlie Adam whose long-range drive whistled just wide of the upright.
And Chelsea made absolutely certain of victory with 12 minutes left when Edin Hazard set up Cesc Fabregas whose scuffed shot trickled past keeper Asmir Begovic.
Begovic denied Costa a third goal late on as Stoke left gaps in their defence as they looked for a way back into the game.