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The defending European Champions, Chelsea, began their Premier League campaign with a victory as they overturned Wigan 2-0 at the DW Stadium. The Blues blitzed into their opening game by scoring two quick goals to catch Wigan out cold. Branislav Ivanovic was the surprise goal-scorer as he netted the opener on two minutes after a sublime counter-attack involving Juan Mata and Eden Hazard. Hazard was again involved four minutes later as he was brought down inside the box by below Premier League debutant Ivan Ramis. Frank Lampard stepped up to convert the spot-kick to get his goal tally up and running.
The Blues took their foot off the gas after the goals and the game in general lost its urgency. Wigan continues to play their patient passing game but there was ni end result as their deficiencies in front of goal was on show yet again. (Full Match Report)
Ali Al-Habsi: 4/10
The keeper could have done better on the opening goal as he was beaten on his near side by Ivanovic, although he did guess the right way for the penalty which flew under him. He didnâ€™t have much to do after the early goals.
Emerson Boyce: 4/10
The right full-back made a few promising runs down the wing, especially in the first half and on the defensive side was quite comfortable against Bertrand.
Gary Caldwell: 5/10
He was caught out, along with the rest of his defence, for the first goal as Chelsea ripped them open. He had a quiet Fernando Torres for company and on the whole managed to steady the ship after they went behind.
Ivan Ramis: 3/10
The new comer had a torrid time against Hazard, who turned him for the opening goal and forced him into a reckless challenge for the penalty.
Antolin Alcaraz: 4/10
The Paraguayan also suffered in the early minutes but regained his composure as the game went on. He provided one of the best crosses of the game in the 2nd half, but sadly Di Santo couldnâ€™t take advantage.
Maynor Figueroa: 5/10
He was one of Wiganâ€™s most potent forces in the attacking half and provided the front-men with a number of quality long-range passes.
James McArthur: 4/10
The Scotsman was a surprise starter as he had only one pre-season game under his belt and as a result was unsurprisingly substituted late in the game. He saw a lot of the ball in the centre but didnâ€™t impact proceedings a great deal.
James McCarthy: 5/10
McCarthy was also a busy man in midfield as Wigan controlled vast amounts of possession, but mostly in non-threatening areas.
Shaun Maloney: 4/10
He wasnâ€™t given enough time on the ball to showcase his array of skills and had to be substituted a few minutes into the 2nd half after picking up what appeared to be a groin strain.
Victor Moses: 6/10
The Nigerian wasnâ€™t affected by the links with Chelsea as he put in an energetic display. After a relatively quiet 1st half, he picked up speed in the 2nd, continuously beating his markers to put in crosses from the wide areas.
Franco Di Santo: 4/10
The Argentine isnâ€™t known for his prolific finishing and it was clearly on show here as he missed Wiganâ€™s best chance in the 1st half due to a poor first touch and he was guilty of a few more misses too.
Jordi Gomez: 5/10
Like Di Santo, Gomez was also culpable of poor finishing as he spurned numerous opportunities after coming on for Maloney.
Arouna Kone: 4/10
The debutant came on with over 20 minutes left, but still managed to offer glimpses of his talents as he got into two great goal scoring positions. Martinez will expect more of the same from the powerful striker.
Ben Watson: -NA-
He replaced McArthur with ten minutes go and didnâ€™t really have enough time to make an impact.
Petr Cech: 5/10
Although the veteran keeper didnâ€™t have too many saves to make, he confidently cleared danger when called into action.
Branislav Ivanovic: 6/10
The right-back put his Community Shield disappointment behind him to score a brilliant goal, which he took with great composure.
John Terry: 8/10
The Captain was a colossus at the back as he repelled everything Wigan threw at him. He cleared countless cross from the Latics and was like a magnet inside the Chelsea box.
David Luiz: 5/10
The Brazilian is still guilty of making the odd mistake, owing to lapses in concentration. But he provided ample support to his defensive partner today.
Ashley Cole: 5/10
He was brilliant against Man City in the Community Shield, but suffered a few anxious moments against Moses today. That apart he was his usual assured self on the left.
Jon Obi Mikel: 4/10
Mikel is often guilty of being an underwhelming presence in midfield and while the game as a whole was a slightly drab affair, the Nigerian had a fairly quiet day in the office.
Frank Lampard: 5/10
Lampardâ€™s amazing scoring record continues as he got off the mark for the season with a confident spot-kick. But his overall game continues to slide towards the mediocre.
Eden Hazard: 6/10
A brilliant Premier League debut from the Belgian as he was at the heart of everything good about Chelsea. He was played on the right due to Ramiresâ€™ absence, but still showed a great first touch and cruise control. Di matteo will expect many more happy evenings from the big money signing.
Juan Mata: 5/10
The Spaniard was at his usual best in the early part of the first half, but like at the Community Shield he faded away pretty quickly, thus adding weight to Di Matteoâ€™s assessment that the lack of a summer break has left him jaded.
Ryan Bertrand: 4/10
The youngster was a surprising pick on the left and although he gave Cole enough protection, Chelsea lost out on attacking impetus from that side.
Fernando Torres: 4/10
Chelseaâ€™s record signing had a very quiet evening as he rarely had a sight at goal, but for a moment in the 2nd half when his poke was cleared off the line from Ramis.
The Brazilian replaced Hazard just after the hour mark and immediately showcased his talents as he burnt rubber down the right and even managed to get a shot across goal. A lot more can be expected from the Samba maestro in the coming months.
Raul Meireles: -NA-
The Portuguese came on for Mata with eight minutes to go and understandably wasnâ€™t heavily involved.
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