Wednesday, 23 February 2011

FC Copenhagen v Chelsea

This is my match report written during the game and completed by the time the final whistle was blown. Word limit of 250, which is annoyingly small.

Chris Pike – Daily Mail. Tuesday, 22 February, 2011.
UEFA Champions League Last 16 First Leg. Parken Stadion.
FC Copenhagen (4-4-2):Wiland; Pospech, Jorgensen, Antonsson, Wendt (Bengtsson 76); Bolanos, Kvist, Claudemir, Gronkjaer (Zohore 87); Santin (Vingaard 46), Ndoye. Subs not used: Christensen, Kristensen, Hooiveld, Delaney.
Booked: Jorgensen, Pospech.
Chelsea (4-4-2): Cech; Bosingwa, Ivanovic, Terry, Cole; Ramires, Lampard, Essien, Malouda (Zhirkov 85); Anelka (Drogba 73), Torres (Kalou 90). Subs not used: Turnbull, Mikel, Ferreira, McEachran.
Booked: Torres, Malouda, Terry.
Referee: Bjorn Kuipers.
Nicolas Anelka scored twice as an impressive Chelsea got back to winning ways against weak opposition, relieving the pressure on manager Carlo Ancelotti.
The striker’s sixth and seventh goals in the competition this season capped a solid performance by the visitors, although Fernando Torres again failed to find the target. 
The Blues began brightly and a chance fell to Torres in the seventh minute, but his touch was heavy which allowed the keeper to block.
But the Spaniard, who hadn’t been on the winning side since his £50m arrival from Liverpool, continued to influence the game, creating chances for Anelka and Florent Malouda, before Anelka opened the scoring.
The Frenchman picked up a loose pass from former Chelsea midfielder Jesper Gronkjaer and lashed his shot past Copenhagen keeper Johan Wiland.
Copenhagen came into the match unbeaten in 16 home games in all competitions this season, but, having not played a competitive match since 7 December, their lack of sharpness was clear as the visitors dominated. 
Further chances fell to Torres, but he couldn’t break his duck as Didier Drogba watched on from the bench.
Ancelotti would have been satisfied at half time, his team in command over a side appearing in the knock-out stage of the competition for the first time.
The pattern was maintained in the second half, and Anelka doubled Chelsea’s lead, running on to a superb pass from Frank Lampard and finishing with aplomb.
It was a much-needed improvement by Chelsea, and despite Torres’ lack of a goal, Ancelotti will feel a lot more confident going into next Tuesday’s Premier League clash with Manchester United at Stamford Bridge.
Word count: 272.

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