Boro Late Show Stuns Blues  (Sky Sports)

Middlesbrough 2 Chelsea 1

Andrei Shevchenko in action against BoroA last minute goal from Mark Viduka sealed a shock 2-1 victory for Middlesbrough over Chelsea.

The Blues took the lead through Andrei Shevchenko in the first half but Middlesbrough refused to become the latest victims of a Chelsea 1-0 and fought back with late strikes from Emanuel Pogatetz and substitute Viduka.

Boro's fallibilities had been exposed by Premiership new boys Reading on Saturday, but they showed just why they can be so infuriating to predict with a battling performance on an extraordinary night in the North East.

The Teessiders made a habit of upsetting the top sides at home last season and there was an early warning for Chelsea when Gaizka Mendieta rounded off a flowing move by firing narrowly wide.

Moments later Stewart Downing cut inside onto his right foot and floated a delightful cross over John Terry's head, but Yakubu Aiyegbeni failed to get his head on the ball when any contact would probably have given Boro the lead.

It was to prove a bad miss as Chelsea opened the scoring on 16 minutes with their first attack of the match and Shevchenko paid off the first portion of his massive transfer fee.

Michael Essien slid Wayne Bridge in down the left of the penalty area and his cut back was fortuitously turned in by the Ukrainian, who just did enough to get in front of George Boateng and scuff a shot past the wrong-footed Mark Schwarzer.

Boro's heads sank visibly and poor defending from Emanuel Pogatetz and Andrew Taylor nearly gifted Chelsea a second straight away, but Salomon Kalou could not quite stretch to meet Didier Drogba's low cross.

Summer recruit Kalou only had his chance in the starting XI because Arjen Robben picked up an injury in the warm-up, and it was the more experienced Essien and Claude Makelele who caught the eye as The Blues started to dominate midfield completely.

Shevchenko also showed his prowess from set pieces, with a stunning free kick from 35 yards which started central but curled wickedly away towards the top left corner until it was brilliantly palmed away by Schwarzer.

Chelsea remained in cruise control for the remainder of the first half, but were made to pay for not going in for the kill as Boro came out all guns blazing after the break.

Their new-found urgency increased the noise level inside The Riverside Stadium and managed to rattle the Chelsea back line.

Boro were granted a superb chance to level matters when Yakubu beat the offside trap but failed to realise how much time he had to control a high, looping ball and headed dreadfully off target.

Chelsea were briefly back into their stride and nearly doubled their advantage when Shevchenko, after a blistering run down the left wing, delivered a pin-point cross for Frank Lampard. However, the England midfielder's powerful header crashed against the woodwork and evaded Drogba as it ricocheted to safety.

The Blues' tendency to sit on a 1-0 lead invariably works because of the quality of their defence, but on this occasion there was a collective nervousness at the back that invited Boro forward.

After a sustained period of pressure Boro's equaliser eventually came when Pogatetz blasted an unstoppable header past Carlo Cudicini from Downing's inswinging free kick (80 minutes).

Chelsea almost restored their lead when Lampard's free kick forced a scrambling save from Schwarzer, but it was Boro who continued to show the greater hunger.

Substitute Lee Cattermole had been inspirational in their resurgence and drove them onwards, but it was another replacement who had the final say.

Chelsea struggled to clear another cross from the dynamic Downing and Viduka reacted quickly to slot the ball home and secure a famous turnaround.

Middlesbrough Team Statistics Chelsea
2 Goals 1
0 1st Half Goals 1
2 Shots on Target 4
7 Shots off Target 2
2 Blocked Shots 1
3 Corners 3
22 Fouls 9
0 Offsides 4
2 Yellow Cards 1
0 Red Cards 0
73 Passing Success 77.6
17 Tackles 17
76.5 Tackles Success 88.2
45.9 Possession 54.1
54.8 Territorial Advantage 45.2


Middlesbrough Schwarzer, Davies (Cattermole 61), Parnaby, Pogatetz, Riggott, Taylor, Boateng, Downing, , Mendiaeta (Viduka 72), Rochemback, Yakubu
Subs Not Used Turnbull, McMahon, Morrison
Booked  Parnaby, Boateng
Goals Pogatetz 80, Viduka 90

Chelsea  Cudicini, Bridge, Ferreira, Carvalho, Terry, Essien, Lampard, Makelele (Wright-Phillips 84), Drogba, Kalou, Shevchenko
Subs Not Used  Hilario, Boulahrouz, Mikel, Diarra
Booked  Drogba, Ferreira
Goals  Shevchenko 16

Attendance  29,198

Referee  H. Webb

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