Super Saha Shocks Chelsea  (Sky Sports)

Everton 2 Chelsea 1

Louis SahaLouis Saha scored twice as Chelsea's lead at the top of the Premier League was cut to one point after a shock defeat to Everton.

The visitors dominated the opening stages and Florent Malouda sent them into the lead when he raced onto Didier Drogba's flick-on before firing past Tim Howard.

Everton gradually came back into the match, however, and Saha's 100th goal in English football drew them level after the Frenchman headed in a corner from Landon Donovan.

Donovan was at the forefront of the action again just before half-time as he was brought down by Ricardo Carvalho inside the area only to see Saha's subsequent kick saved by Petr Cech.

But Everton continued to press after the break and Saha fired home the winner when he controlled beautifully with his chest before crashing the ball home.

The Toffees were without key midfielders Marouane Fellaini and Steven Pienaar through injury and suspension respectively.


Mikel Arteta, having finally recovered from a serious knee injury, made his first start in almost a year while Chelsea replaced Michael Ballack with Yury Zhirkov.

Everton stretched Chelsea in the opening minutes as Landon Donovan broke clear but the American overhit his cross intended for Saha.

After that Chelsea assumed command, with Frank Lampard shooting wide after a Nicolas Anelka dummy and Drogba heading over from a Malouda cross.

Branislav Ivanovic then volleyed wide but Chelsea broke through after 17 minutes from a route-one ball.

Cech's long clearance was headed on by Drogba and Malouda brushed off the challenge of Phil Neville to drill a low shot beyond Tim Howard.

Chelsea threatened again when Carvalho rose above Terry to meet a Lampard corner but Howard gathered comfortably.

Everton then launched a counter-attack with Diniyar Bilyaletdinov breaking down the left to cross for Leighton Baines but the left-back could not adjust for the volley and Cech saved.

But the Toffees were growing in confidence and pulled level after winning a corner in the 33rd minute.


Donovan's cross dropped over Lampard and Saha rushed in to nod a header past Cech for his 12th goal of the season and his first in five games.

Everton almost added an immediate second as Tim Cahill set up Leon Osman on the edge of the area but his shot flew wide.

Drogba pulled the ball back from the byline as Chelsea responded but Anelka prodded wide from six yards.

Lampard then tried his luck from a long-range free-kick but shot over and Drogba then curled one wide.

But Everton finished the half with a flourish and Saha should twice have given the hosts the lead.

First he was picked out in front of goal by Donovan but his first touch got away from him and Cech rushed forward to save from point-blank range.

The former Manchester United forward had an immediate chance to make amends after Donovan was felled in the area by Carvalho but Cech guessed right and saved the resulting spot-kick to his left.

Everton did not let the miss affect them and started the second half well with a dangerous Bilyaletdinov cross palmed over the bar by Cech.

Saha then showed brilliant control to turn and create another shooting opportunity in the box but Carvalho just did enough to force him to fire wide.

Everton also battled well in midfield and Drogba showed a growing Chelsea frustration when he fired wildly at goal from more than 40 yards.

Bilyaletdinov showed good control in the area but his shot was blocked and a Donovan cross was just too high for Cahill.

Everton appealed for handball against Terry on the edge of the area but referee Alan Wiley's decision to play on was vindicated as replays showed the ball catching the face.

Pressure finally paid off as Everton deservedly surged into the lead through Saha after 75 minutes.

Terry missed the chance to cut out a long ball from Sylvain Distin and Saha brilliantly chested the ball down before turning and firing home powerfully with his left foot.

Chelsea, having been subdued for most of the second half, then finally sparked into life but the crossbar came to Everton's rescue as Drogba met a Lampard corner with a good header.

Lampard then got in a shot at the end of a flowing move but Howard made the save to his right.


Team Statistics






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Territorial Advantage



Everton  Howard, Neville, Heitinga, Distin, Baines, Donovan, Osman, Arteta (Rodwell 74), Bilyaletdinov (Gosling 86), Cahill, Saha (Senderos 90)
Subs Not Used Nash, Coleman, Yakubu, Anichebe
Booked  Donovan
Goals  Saha 33, 75

Chelsea  Cech, Ivanovic, Carvalho, Terry, A. Cole (Ballack 57), Zhirkov, Mikel (Sturridge 76), Lampard, Anelka (Kalou 67), Malouda, Drogba
Subs Not Used  Hilario, Ferreira, Bruma, Matic
Booked  Mikel, Malouda
Goals  Malouda 17

Attendance 36,411

Referee  A. Wiley

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