Ramires struck twice as Chelsea booked their place in the fourth round of the FA Cup with a 4-0 victory over Portsmouth at Stamford Bridge on Sunday. The Brazil midfielder’s goals, scored in the 85th and 87th minutes, together with an added time fourth for Frank Lampard added gloss to the scoreline after Juan Mata had put Andre Villas-Boas’s side ahead in the 48th minute. That ensured the Blues were spared an embarrassing slip against Championship opponents in a re-run of the two teams’ meeting in the 2010 final, which Chelsea won 1-0.
Portsmouth had opportunities to strike first. Dave Kitson and Marko Futacs combined within a minute to pull John Terry and David Luiz out of position but Kitson dragged his effort wide from the edge of the area. Pompey right back Aaron Mokoena then went close midway through the half when he headed over from just six yards out from a corner. And midfielder David Norris also threatened Petr Cech‘s goal with a snapshot from the edge of the box. Chelsea dominated possession but created few chances, the best falling to Torres after 13 minutes when the Spain striker produced a full length save from Portsmouth keeper Stephen Henderson with a powerful header. The visitors kept Chelsea at bay without too much fuss in the first half.
But Mata made the breakthrough soon after the interval. Ashley Cole charged down a clearance from Kitson with his hands and the Pompey players froze as they appealed for handball. There was no free-kick.Florent Malouda did not pause, seizing the loose ball and tearing past right back Mokoena before rolling a low cross for Mata to score from close range. It was Mata’s 6th goal of the season and he continues to sparkle amid the gloom of Chelsea’s wider problems. Portsmouth responded well to the blow and could have been level but Chelsea escaped when Cech saved from Futacs and then Norris either side of a goal-line block by Terry from Joel Ward. Pompey began to tire though, and Chelsea took full advantage in the final minutes with Ramires making it 2-0 in the 84th minute, darting ahead of Halford to reach a header from Torres and poke past Stephen Henderson in the Portsmouth goal. Torres then released the free-running midfielder for his second in the final minutes before stoppage time, Ramires dinking the ball over the diving keeper to take his tally to 8 in 22 appearances this season. Portsmouth’s collapse was completed in stoppage time as Lampard claimed the fourth, arriving in the penalty area to drive a clinical finish for his 10th goal of the season, and he milked the applause after the final whistle. The two Torres assists were appreciated by the crowd and they offered support to their £50million record signing by singing his name, but he rarely threatened the goal. Chelsea will now play QPR in the fourth round of FA Cup and Sunderland in the nest EPL match on the 14th of January.
Booked : Malouda(40′), Terry(75′), Meireles(90+2’)
Man of the match: Ramires
Match rating: 7/10.
Possession: Chelsea 57% Portsmouth 43%
Attempts on target: Chelsea 4 Portsmouth 3
Referee: A Taylor
- Chelsea 4-0 Portsmouth | FA Cup third-round match report (guardian.co.uk)
- Chelsea polish off Pompey (skysports.com)
- Chelsea 4-0 Portsmouth: Mata, Ramires and Lampard on target as late flurry sees Villas-Boas’ men progress (goal.com)
- Chelsea 4 Portsmouth 0: match report (telegraph.co.uk)
- Chelsea 4 Portsmouth 0: Roberto Di Matteo’s FA Cup vow (thesun.co.uk)