Hazard Double Sparks Chelsea  (Sky Sports)

Chelsea 3 Newcastle United 1

Eden Hazard congratulated on scoringEden Hazard scored twice as Chelsea moved level on points with Manchester United in the Premier League after coming from behind to beat Newcastle 3-1 on Saturday.

Dwight Gayle gave the visitors a surprise lead when he finished in the 12th minute, only for Hazard and Alvaro Morata to reply before half-time.

Hazard then made sure of the points in the 74th minute when he chipped in a penalty after Victor Moses was fouled by Matt Ritchie.

The win sees Chelsea strengthen their position in the top four - and move level on 32 points with Manchester United, who play Arsenal on Saturday evening - while Newcastle have now lost five of their last six matches.

Player ratings

Chelsea: Courtois (6), Azpilicueta (6), Rudiger (7), Christensen (6), Moses (7), Kante (7), Drinkwater (6), Fabregas (7), Alonso (7), Hazard (8), Morata (7).

Subs: Bakayoko (5), Willian (5), Cahill (5)

Newcastle: Darlow (6), Mbemba (4), Clark (4), Lejeune (4), Manquillo (4), Murphy (5), Merino (5), Diame (4), Ritchie (4), Perez (4), Gayle (5).

Subs: Shelvey (5), Hayden (5), Yedlin (5)

Man of the match: Eden Hazard

Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez was making his return to Stamford Bridge for the first time since winning the Europa League during a six-month interim spell in charge in 2011/12.

And he could hardly have asked for a better start as Gayle pounced in the 12th minute after Thibaut Courtois spilt out a shot from Jacob Murphy.

But Chelsea responded well and, after Hazard was denied by Karl Darlow and Andreas Christensen headed against the post, it was Hazard who levelled in the 21st minute.

Chelsea continued to threaten and Morata headed in from Moses' cross just after the half-hour mark to put the hosts in front.

Newcastle struggled to mount a comeback and Chelsea's pressure eventually told as Ritchie fouled Moses in the box and Hazard calmly chipped the penalty in as Darlow dived the other way.

Darlow denied Hazard his hat-trick when he stood tall to keep out another chipped effort, while Danny Drinkwater also went close as Chelsea closed out a comfortable win.

Opta stats

Antonio Conte has won all 17 Premier League games with Chelsea in which Eden Hazard has scored.

Newcastle have won just one of their last 19 away Premier League games (W1 D4 L14).

Since the start of season, Alvaro Morata has scored 11 headed goals, more than any other player in Europe's big five leagues.

Hazard has scored more Premier League goals versus Newcastle United than against any other team in the competition (6).

Hazard has had a hand in 11 goals in his last 10 games in all competitions for Chelsea (8 goals, 3 assists).

Man of the match - Eden Hazard

Hazard has been hitting form in recent weeks and he was the star of the show at Stamford Bridge. Again playing in a No 10 role, the Belgium international had six shots on target, a league-high in the Premier League this season, and linked up well with Morata, Cesc Fabregas and Drinkwater.

As well as his two goals, the 26-year-old was a constant threat on the ball as Newcastle found it tough to get close.

"When you think of the two top men around today - Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo - when they go who are the next ones to take the mantle? Neymar? Hazard comes into that category, he is that good," said Graeme Souness on Sky Sports afterwards.

If Hazard continues in this vein for the rest of season, England beware next summer.

What's next?

Chelsea complete their Champions League group campaign on Tuesday when they host Atletico Madrid, before travelling to West Ham next Saturday, live on Sky Sports Premier League. Newcastle are at home to Leicester next Saturday.    

Click Here For Official Team Sheet


Chelsea Courtois, Azpilicueta (c), Christensen (Cahill 80), Rudiger, Moses, Drinkwater, Fabregas (Bakayoko 78), Kante, Alonso, Hazard (Willian 78), Morata
Subs Not Used Caballero, Zappacosta, Pedro, Batshuayi
Hazard 21, 74 (pen), Morata 33

Newcastle United Darlow, Manquillo, Lejeune, Clark, Mbemba, Diame (Shelvey 75), Merino (Yedlin 85), Ritchie, Perez (Hayden 62), Murphy, Gayle
Subs Not Used Elliot, Aarons, Joselu, Mitrovic
Booked Clark
Goals Gayle 12

Attendance 41,538

Referee Kevin Friend

The Soccerlinks Hit List