Romelu Lukaku scored his first ever goals at Stamford Bridge as Chelsea beat Aston Villa to maintain their unbeaten start.
Lukaku kissed the club badge as he celebrated his opener in front of Blues fans after beating Villa goalkeeper Jed Steer on his 15th appearance at the stadium overall.
The Belgian’s clinical finish through Steer’s legs came from a precise pass from Mateo Kovacic inside his own half.
Lukaku sealed the win for Chelsea in injury time with a powerful finish down from the edge of the box
Dean Smith’s side created plenty of chances after going 1-0 down and managed four shots on target, but could not find a way past Blues goalkeeper Edouard Mendy.
Villa were punished for their wasted chances when Kovacic doubled Chelsea’s lead early in the second half with a first-time finish into the bottom corner from Tyrone Mings’ weak back pass.
The victory takes Thomas Tuchel’s side up to second – level on points and goal difference with leaders Manchester United – and sees the club reach a significant milestone as they become only the second team in Premier League history to reach 600 wins in the competition (Man Utd have 690).
Villa made to pay for missed chances
Villa’s preparations for their trip to Stamford Bridge were disrupted with the absence of first-choice goalkeeper Emi Martinez and winger Emi Buendia, who missed out because of quarantine rules after the international break.
Stand-in goalkeeper Steer was in for a busy afternoon with Chelsea forcing three corners inside the opening 10 minutes, and they finally opened the scoring on the quarter-hour.
The Blues broke down the Villa defence after a superb pass from Kovacic inside his own half found Lukaku on the edge of the box.
The Belgian slalomed past Villa defender Axel Tuanzebe before sweeping past Steer for his second Premier League goal of the season.
Villa enjoyed a bright spell after conceding and nearly responded when Ollie Watkins’ low drive forced Mendy into an impressive reaction save, diving low to his right to keep out the forward on his first start of the season.
Mendy was the busier of the two goalkeepers in the first half and had a let off when Watkins rounded him only to take one too many touches and allow Thiago Silva to get back and block his goal-bound effort.
Mendy redeemed himself with two saves in quick succession to deny Villa defenders Mings and Ezri Konsa, but any hopes of a comeback were dashed when Kovacic doubled Chelsea’s lead four minutes after the restart.
After making the first goal, the Croatia midfielder pounced on a weak Mings pass to put the ball beyond Steer and into the far corner for only his second ever Premier League goal.
Villa managed to keep Lukaku relatively quiet, with the 28-year-old managing just 25 touches of the ball in 93 minutes – less than any player who started the game.
While he was restricted to just two chances, Lukaku scored from them both, firing into the roof of the net from Cesar Azpilicueta’s pass to make it eight goals in his last six Premier League outings against Villa.
Squad number9Player nameLukakuAverage rating
Squad number8Player nameKovacicAverage rating
Squad number16Player nameMendyAverage rating
Squad number29Player nameHavertzAverage rating
Squad number6Player nameThiago SilvaAverage rating
Squad number2Player nameRüdigerAverage rating
Squad number5Player nameJorginhoAverage rating
Squad number28Player nameAzpilicuetaAverage rating
Squad number14Player nameChalobahAverage rating
Squad number3Player nameAlonsoAverage rating
Squad number22Player nameZiyechAverage rating
Squad number20Player nameHudson-OdoiAverage rating
Squad number11Player nameWernerAverage rating
Squad number17Player nameSaúlAverage rating
Squad number11Player nameWatkinsAverage rating
Squad number7Player nameMcGinnAverage rating
Squad number31Player nameBaileyAverage rating
Squad number4Player nameKonsaAverage rating
Squad number41Player nameRamseyAverage rating
Squad number15Player nameTraoréAverage rating
Squad number2Player nameCashAverage rating
Squad number6Player nameDouglas LuizAverage rating
Squad number3Player nameTargettAverage rating
Squad number16Player nameTuanzebeAverage rating
Squad number20Player nameIngsAverage rating
Squad number19Player nameNakambaAverage rating
Squad number12Player nameSteerAverage rating
Squad number5Player nameMingsAverage rating
- 6Thiago Silva
- 20Hudson-OdoiSubstituted forWernerat 82′minutes
- 17SaúlSubstituted forJorginhoat 45′minutes
- 3AlonsoBooked at 61mins
- 29HavertzSubstituted forAzpilicuetaat 64′minutes
- 5MingsBooked at 28mins
- 3TargettBooked at 90mins
- 41RamseyBooked at 8minsSubstituted forBaileyat 56′minutes
- 6Douglas LuizSubstituted forNakambaat 80′minutes
- 7McGinnBooked at 90mins
- 20IngsSubstituted forTraoréat 69′minutes
- 21El Ghazi
- Stuart Attwell
Match ends, Chelsea 3, Aston Villa 0.
Second Half ends, Chelsea 3, Aston Villa 0.
Goal! Chelsea 3, Aston Villa 0. Romelu Lukaku (Chelsea) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the top left corner. Assisted by César Azpilicueta.
John McGinn (Aston Villa) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Matt Targett (Aston Villa) is shown the yellow card.
Jorginho (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by John McGinn (Aston Villa).
Foul by Timo Werner (Chelsea).
Ezri Konsa (Aston Villa) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Attempt missed. John McGinn (Aston Villa) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left following a corner.
Corner, Aston Villa. Conceded by Thiago Silva.
Attempt blocked. Ollie Watkins (Aston Villa) header from the left side of the six yard box is blocked.
Corner, Aston Villa. Conceded by Jorginho.
Attempt blocked. Tyrone Mings (Aston Villa) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.
Substitution, Chelsea. Timo Werner replaces Callum Hudson-Odoi.
Attempt missed. Hakim Ziyech (Chelsea) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Jorginho.
Attempt saved. Ollie Watkins (Aston Villa) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.
Substitution, Aston Villa. Marvelous Nakamba replaces Douglas Luiz.
Offside, Chelsea. Trevoh Chalobah tries a through ball, but Callum Hudson-Odoi is caught offside.
Corner, Aston Villa. Conceded by Trevoh Chalobah.
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