Chelsea battled hard in the rain to prevail 2-0 against a lacklustre Newcastle United side.
Two wonder goals settled the tie for Newcastle the last time these sides met, but two goals for Chelsea this time, and the stopping of the likes of Cisse and Ba, made sure Chelsea recorded three wins from three.
Eden Hazard, once again, stole the show with a sublime display, having a say in both Chelsea’s goals, with it increasingly looking like Chelsea got a bargain for the 21-year-old playmaker, who has been involved in seven of Chelsea’s eight goals this league season.
Chelsea did start brightly, and won a penalty for the third successive Premier League match, but with Frank Lampard on the bench, it was down to Eden Hazard to convert, and not supply, the spot-kick.
The confident Belgian coolly slotted past Tim Krul, to open his account for the season. It was the first time a Chelsea player not called Frank Lampard or Didier Drogba to score a penalty since Michael Ballack in 2008.
Chelsea will have felt more composed with the breakthrough half-way through the first half, but whereas in the previous two matches they opted to sit back with the ball, this time they set out for more, with Branislav Ivanovic close to scoring in three consecutive matches, after excellent play on the wings.
The confidence continued for the home side, with Hazard and Mata gliding Chelsea up the field, but the latter opted to find his compatriot Torres in the box when his better judgement might have told him to be a little more selfish.
Newcastle were valiant and huffed and puffed and had an opportunity late in the first half, but Cisse failed to convert after the ball ricocheted unfortunately off David Luiz.
Chelsea left it late on to double their lead in the first half, with a revitalised Fernando Torres joining in. Excellent work between the Spaniard and Hazard resulted in a powerful top poke which flew into Krul’s top corner.
That’s three goals for Torres this season, and life after Drogba is surely bringing life into Torres for Chelsea.
Chances were the product of Chelsea’s dominance with the ball, and a threatening free-kick was left to David Luiz, but the man who Barcelona allegedly enquired for this season was wasteful.
The same could be said for Raul Meireles, who had the opportunity to show Luiz how to bend it like Beckham just seven minutes later, but failed to produce the goods.
Still Newcastle had belief, knowing a goal could change anything, and they could have found a way back through Cisse, who miskicked the first attempt and then side-footed straight into Cech’s out-stretched arms.
Substitutions and the drenched pitch made Chelsea’s style less fluid, with Roberto Di Matteo feeling the pace of Ramires, and experience of Frank Lampard, was necessary.
David Luiz suffered a nasty blow to neck and head, but with no defenders on the bench for Chelsea with Terry injured and Azpilicueta signed too late to be registered in time for this match, the Brazilian soldiered on, and Chelsea saw out the side that finished above them last term.
It will be three weeks now before Chelsea next have a Premier League outing, but nine points from nine going and a potential win in the UEFA Super Cup might just continue them from where they left off.