Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Terry's All Gold in Blues Victory; SUNDERLAND 0, CHELSEA 1

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Terry's All Gold in Blues Victory; SUNDERLAND 0, CHELSEA 1

Article excerpt

CHELSEA boss Avram Grant drafted star striker Didier Drogba back into the starting line-up for this afternoon's Barclays Premier League trip to struggling Sunderland.

Sunderland manager Roy Keane handed winger Carlos Edwards a first start since December 1 following his recovery from a broken leg.

He was included along with Andy Reid and Roy O'Donovan with Kieran Richardson, Anthony Stokes and Daryl Murphy dropping out of the 16.

O'Donovan pushed straight up alongside Kenwyne Jones as Keane abandoned the 4-5-1 formation he employed against Everton last weekend in the search for a greater presence in attack.

The ploy worked within two minutes of kick-off when Reid forced a left-wing corner and then drove the ball to the near post.

Jones looked favourite to get there first, but Alex stepped in to clear before the striker could pounce.

However, Chelsea might have taken the lead from the game's second corner three minutes later when Frank Lampard picked out the unmarked Michael Ballack, but the German's header was well off target.

The home fans were calling for a penalty with seven minutes gone when John Terry and O'Donovan went to ground after the defender had misjudged a bouncing ball, but referee Mike Dean waved play on.

But the visitors might have gone in front seconds later after Salomon Kalou was played in by Drogba.

Phil Bardsley made a superb challenge to dispossess the striker and Joe Cole's follow-up was blocked by Jonny Evans.

However, the opening goal arrived with 10 minutes gone when TERRY rose to power home another Lampard corner, his first for the club since the first game of last season.

Joe Cole only just failed to convert Ashley Cole's 18th-minute cross as the Blues pinned the Black Cats back deep inside their own half.

Sunderland were handed a glorious opportunity to put goalkeeper Carlo Cudicini under pressure after 26 minutes when Mikel was penalised for a foul on Jones 20 yards out.

Reid almost took full advantage when he curled a left-foot shot towards the Italian's top left corner, prompting a fine one-handed save.

The near miss sparked the home side into life, and it was they who were exerting the pressure as the game approached the half-hour mark. …

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