Boro Claim Historic Chelsea Win (Sky Sports)
Middlesbrough 3 Chelsea 0
Middlesbrough produced one of the biggest shocks in Premiership history as they beat Chelsea 3-0 at The Riverside.
Boro somehow bounced back from their 4-0 capitulation to Aston Villa last week to produce a fantastic display as they more than matched the champions for the full 90 minutes.
Brazilian international Fabio Rochemback opened the scoring after just two minutes to put Boro ahead, and the Teessiders fully deserved their second which came on the stroke of half time from Stewart Downing.
The expected Chelsea onslaught in the second half never really ensued and 22 minutes from time the outstanding Yakubu Aiyegbeni fired home to add a third - the first time Jose Mourinho has ever seen his side concede three.
Steve McClaren had opted for one up front in the shape of Yakubu - and many perceived this to be a negative move, but nothing could have been further from the truth as Boro grabbed the early lead.
Yakubu held up the ball before working it to Rochemback, he took the ball past John Terry and Ricardo Carvalho before unleashing a left footed drive which squirmed under Petr Cech - who will be disappointed with his efforts.
Boro's excellent early play was flowing through wingers Downing and James Morrison - who both created all sorts of problems for Chelsea's beleaguered looking backline.
Cech was then at full stretch to tip Downing's effort round the post after some clever work from Rochemback.
William Gallas was then forced off with a hamstring injury, which saw Michael Essien switched to left back as Maniche entered the fray - and this did nothing for Chelsea as they struggled to get into the game.
Frank Lampard was attempting to do it all himself and he had three chances fly wide when well placed on the edge of the area.
Mark Schwarzer was then the hero for the home side as he pulled off a superb double save from Essien and then Hernan Crespo - who looked certain to score from close range.
Morrison was then forced off for Boro, which meant George Boateng's return after two months on the sidelines.
Boro adapted quickly to Boateng's introduction and finished the half brightly and almost extended their lead through Chris Riggott - whose looping header just came down outside Cech's post.
Terry was booked for a reckless challenge on Gaizka Mendieta just before the break, but worse was to come for the Blues skipper as Boro extended their lead.
Downing grabbed the goal as he cut inside past former Boro man Geremi before unleashing a right footed effort which flew past Cech, albeit after slight deflection off Terry.
Mourinho - who has never seen his side trailing 2-0 at half time - introduced Shaun Wright-Phillips and Carlton Cole for the ineffective duo Joe Cole and Geremi.
Cole had a sight of goal almost immediately but his effort deflected wide, but it was again Boro who looked dangerous early in the half.
Yakubu broke form the corner and only a wonderful last ditch tackle from Terry prevented the Nigerian from having a clear run on goal.
Boro were limiting Chelsea to speculative efforts and neither Maniche nor Arjen Robben seriously tested Schwarzer.
Chelsea began to turn the screw and a series of corners followed, but Boro continued to defend excellently with Gareth Southgate and Riggott looking imperious.
Indeed Boro's counter attacking soon paid dividends once again as Yakubu scored a superb third. He collected a long ball on the edge of the box before tempting Terry into a challenge which he skipped by before firing low past Cech.
Chelsea's best chance of the match then fell for Cole, but he hit his volley off the post and wide, while Boro were still not finished themselves and Cech was forced into a top-class save to prevent Rochemback's 30-yard effort flying into the top corner.
In stark contrast to last week, when Boro were rightly booed of the field, McClaren's men were given a standing ovation as they added Chelsea to a momentous list of Riverside wins this season which already included Manchester United and Arsenal.
The win takes Boro eight points clear of the relegation zone, but on this evidence it really is a mystery as to how they have become embroiled in a basement battle.
|5||Shots on target ( Inc Goals )||3|
|1||Shots off Target (inc woodwork)||6|
|18||Total Fouls Conceded||7|
Schwarzer, Parnaby, Pogatetz, Riggott,
Southgate, Doriva, Downing, Mendieta (Davies 90), Morrison (Boateng 39),
Rochemback, Yakubub (Hasselbaink 90)
Subs Not Used Jones, Maccarone
Goals Rochemback 2, Downing 45, Yakubu 68
Cech, Gallas (Maniche 17), Carvalho, Terry, J.
Cole (Wright-Phillips 45), Essien, Geremi (C. Cole 45), Lampard, Crespo,
Subs Not Used Cudicini, Huth
Booked Terry, Gudjohnsen, Carvalho