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West Ham got themselves a bit more respectability on the scoresheet through England Under 16 winger Robert Hall, who was in the right place at the right time to tap in following Okus’ marauding run to the edge of the area, and for the last ten minutes or so Carr’s boys made a concerted effort to reduce arrears further. Abdullah went agonisingly close, taking a coat of paint off the post, whilst Okus and Barnett may have done better with chances.
With the win, Chelsea leap off the bottom of the table and consign their beaten opponents to the basement. The team may well have been stronger than at any other time this season for the presence of reserve regulars Kakuta, Mellis and Bruma, but the performance was as good as they’ve played in many, many games and there are a lot of pleasing things to take from the game. Aside from Kakuta’s brilliance, something also highlighted by West Ham-leaning press, Bruma, Mellis, and Nouble were all outstanding. The left-back duo of Tabor and Gordon worked well all game until Tabor went off, and Borini continued to show his superb second season form. On a day where their finishing was sharper, double figures would not have been surprising. On days like this (without going over the top), the future looks very bright for Chelsea - and not just because of the yellow kit.
Team: Heimann, Ahmed, Philliskirk (c), Bruma, Gordon, Clifford (MacEachran 60), Mellis, Kakuta, Nouble, Tabor (Sala 57), Borini
Subs Not Used: King, Kaby, Haxhia
Goals: Nouble 11, Borini 21, Mellis 32, own goal 51
Booked: Borini, Mellis