An Eden Hazard double and goals by Loic Remy, Didier Drogba, John Terry and a Maribor own-goal handed Chelsea a 6-0 victory to ensure a two point lead atop Group G in the Champions League.
Remy broke the deadlock in the 13th minute after a lovely ball from Terry put the French striker in over the top. Remy cut inside onto his left foot before bending his shot into the far post. One minute later, however, Remy came off injured, holding his groin.
Replaced by Drogba, it was only nine minutes before the Ivorian legend scored to put Chelsea up two. The goal came via penalty after Willian’s cross hit the trailing arm of the Maribor defender. It was unlucky for the Slovenian side and Drogba made no mistake about it, rifling the penalty hard and low.
Just past the half-hour mark, Terry put the Blues up three goals. After Drogba cleared a Maribor corner, Eden Hazard held up play before finding Cesc Fabregas. The Spaniard advanced the ball and on came the trucking Terry, who sprinted the entire length of the pitch to knock home Fabregas’ cross from a few yards out. Maribor had a shout for offside but it fell on dead ears.
Chelsea began the second half in much the same way they ended the first – dominant – after a clever Eden Hazard set up a Kurt Zouma header that was well saved by Handanovic. Maribor’s bad luck continued in the 54th minute when Filipe Luis’ cross found Hazard and the Belgian had his shot blocked but then crossed low and it bounced off the heel of Mitja Viler and into the net.
Credit to Maribor, they didn’t give up. After Damjan Bohar nearly scored but for the leg of Zouma, the Slovenian side earned a 64th minute penalty after Nemanja Matic smashed into the back of Agim Ibraim. On the ensuing kick, Ibraim dinged his effort off the post, unlucky yet again.
With Hazard dancing over the ball and the Chelsea faithful singing in the stands it seemed inevitabe the Belgian would get on the scoresheet. And after Willian clattered the bar in the 75th, Branislav Ivanovic drew Chelsea’s second penalty of the night. Up stepped Hazard, who sent the Maribor keeper the wrong way to increase Chelsea’s lead to five.
But Hazard wasn’t done there as just before the death, substitute Nathan Ake sent a long ball to the winger, who took the ball down expertly, turned past his defender and smashed the ball past Handanovic. A sensational ending to a sensational performance by Hazard and Chelsea as a whole.
Chelsea: Cech; Ivanovic, Zouma, Terry (c), Filipe Luis; Matic, Fabregas (Nathan Ake 60′); Willian, Oscar, Hazard; Remy (Didier Drogba 16′)
Goals: Remy 13′, Drogba 23′, Terry 31′, Viler (og 54′), Hazard (p) (77′), Hazard (90′)
Maribor: Handanovic; Stojanovic, Rajcevic, Suler; Viler (Dare Vrsic 57′), Mejac, Mertelj, Filipovic Bohar; Tavares (Jean Philippe Mendy 72′), Ibraimi (Luka Zahovic 68′)