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Liverpool ends Chelsea's 4-year unbeaten home run

Liverpool ends Chelsea's 4-year unbeaten home run

Liverpool ended Chelsea's 86-game unbeaten run at Stamford Bridge on Sunday with a 1-0 victory and went three points clear at the top of the Premier League.
Midfielder Xabi Alonso scored in the 10th minute with a shot that was deflected into the net by Chelsea defender Jose Bosingwa.
Claudio Ranieri's Chelsea side lost in Feb. 2004 to Arsenal, but the London club hadn't been beaten at home since then _ a record that remained intact under Jose Mourinho and Avram Grant.
The loss came two days after Chelsea manager Luiz Felipe Scolari reportedly suggested that his side could finish the season unbeaten.
"The result was not expected, but we have to understand that Liverpool is a very good team," Scolari said. "They didn't play better than us but shot one ball better than us and won. They play eight players defensively and give no space to work the ball."
Chelsea rarely looked capable of denying Liverpool a confidence-boosting victory that bolsters hopes that manager Rafa Benitez can end Liverpool's 19-year wait for its 19th league title in May.
"Top of the league, psychologically that should give us a big lift," Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher said. "(It is) four years since they have been beat. It's a great record. Obviously it couldn't go on forever.
"It had to finish some time, we're delighted that it was us."
Benitez was more circumspect, appealing for calm.
"One game at a time. We're in a good position and we will try to keep going," the Spaniard said. "The players' mentality, their work-rate, working together and everybody doing the right things, that was key."
Alonso, who Benitez tried to offload in the summer, scored the only goal with huge assistance from Bosingwa. Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech had been diving to his right to block Alonso's shot until Bosingwa diverted the ball away from Cech and into the net.
It was the first goal Chelsea has conceded in more than ten hours over seven league and cup matches.
Benitez's side looked capable of extending its advantage against a Chelsea side unusually lacking in guile, with Steven Gerrard unleashing a dipping shot in the 24th that was tipped over by Cech and Alonso seeing a 62nd-minute free kick hit the base of the goal post with Cech well beaten.
Liverpool's solid defensive barrier, marshaled superbly by Carragher, prevented Chelsea _ sorely missing the injured Didier Drogba's physical presence _ from creating many threatening chances. The 30-year-old Carragher made a last ditch slide to snuff out a rare shooting chance for Deco with 15 minutes remaining, deflecting the ball wide.
Defender Ashley Cole miskicked badly in the 63rd when Franco Di Santo headed a crisp ball into his path to create a good scoring opportunity.
Next up for Chelsea is a potentially tricky trip Wednesday to high-flying Premier League newcomer Hull, which is tied with them on 20 points.
"The players are sad, it's normal, but they haven't finished the war, it is only one game lost," Scolari said.


Updated : 2021-06-15 15:47 GMT+08:00