Chelsea run riot in Russia to cruise to Champions League win over Krasnodar
Chelsea delivered a commanding Champions League performance to seal an emphatic 4-0 win at Krasnodar.
Callum Hudson-Odoi, Timo Werner, Hakim Ziyech and Christian Pulisic all found the net as the Blues eased to their first Group E victory in Russia.
Regular penalty-taker Jorginho missed his second spot-kick of the campaign though, wrong-footing goalkeeper Matvei Safonov with his trademark skip-step run-up – only to scuff the ball against the post as he attempted to give Chelsea the lead.
Jorginho had just been substituted with 15 minutes to play when Chelsea won a second penalty in the match.
And with the Italy midfielder off the field, Germany hitman Werner seized control and rifled the ball into the net, in a dead-ball style in complete contrast with Jorginho’s approach.
Jorginho’s trademark technique was unerring for eight penalties in a row, but so far this term the 28-year-old has missed twice and scored three times from the spot.
Werner’s net-busting strike will at least hand boss Frank Lampard food for thought in terms of a regular penalty-taker, with the striker doubtless keen to take those duties as often as possible.
Chelsea cruised to a fine victory in any event, with full debutant Ziyech looking sharp and influential, floating in off the right flank to much creative effect.
Hudson-Odoi marked his start with a goal, but was later seen icing his left thigh.
Chelsea’s third clean sheet in a row is another boost to boss Lampard, on a night where owner Roman Abramovich was in attendance in southern Russia.
Krasnodar made by far the faster start, Marcus Berg drawing a solid save from Edouard Mendy.
Ziyech looked sharp on his full debut and worked himself into position for a low drive, but could not catch out Safonov.
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Chelsea won a deserved penalty shortly after though, when Brazilian defender Kaio lost his composure and caught Werner in his own box.
Jorginho stepped up and wrong-footed Safonov, but scuffed his effort against the post and the rebounding ball ricocheted off the nonplussed Safonov and flicked away to safety, leaving Chelsea lamenting a major missed opportunity.
If Chelsea’s missed penalty carried an air of misfortune, then their opening goal was laden with luck.
Slick build-up play saw Hudson-Odoi fed in the box cutting in off the left. The England forward checked and pinged a shot on goal, and what should have been a harmless effort squirmed under Safonov’s body and into the net.
Chelsea took that 1-0 lead into the break, without ever hitting full stride in a fractious first-half.
The Blues were unable to take control after the interval, and the crossbar shortly came to their rescue.
Yuri Gazinski blasted into the turf after a corner and the resulting bounce left Mendy unable to divert at full stretch, with the ball rattling the woodwork.
Havertz conjured a fine chance for Ziyech on the break with an inviting ball into the box as Chelsea sought to cement their lead.
But the enterprising Morocco winger could not find a finish to match his footwork to open the space for the shot.
Defender Aleksandr Martynovich’s handball gifted Chelsea a second penalty in the match with a quarter-hour to play.
Up stepped Werner – who blasted home emphatically to seal the Blues’ win and Ziyech added a third moments later, finishing well to cap a strong full debut as the visitors finally eased their path to victory.
Pulisic added the fourth at the death, slotting home at the near post, capitalising on a smart tee-up from Tammy Abraham.