Chelsea opened the scoring when Eden Hazard’s trickery and guile proved too much for Royal’s defender Chris Gunter. In typical fashion, veteran Frank Lampard slotted the penalty in the bottom left corner to put the home side ahead.
But then Stamford Bridge was stunned into silence when Danny Guthrie and Pavel Pobgrebnyak quickly overturned the score-line to lead 2-1 at the interval. Chelsea’s fear of defeat was relieved when Gary Cahill equalised with just over twenty minutes remaining.
The controversial moment of the game appeared in the 81st minute when Fernando Torres slotted the ball home from close range. However, replays seemed to suggest that the Spaniard was standing in an offside position. The European Champions then ensured victory in stoppage time thanks to Branislav Ivanovic.
Di Matteo admitted that he thought it was a tough game, but he was impressed with the character his side showed. Di Matteo told Sky Sports, “In the second half we wanted to keep them under pressure and we did so. We had to take a bit of a risk but we managed to get the goals and win the game.”
Di Matteo said he was also happy with the start £32 million pound signing Eden Hazard has made to his Chelsea career, “the new signings have certainly impressed, and also the players we already had here.”
The Chelsea manager was also full of praise for newly-promoted Reading, “they were tough opponents. We expected them to be tough, and I said to the players after watching Southampton on Sunday against Manchester City that newly-promoted teams have all the spirit and enthusiasm from coming back up, and they made it very hard for us.”
Chelsea certainly seem to play an exciting brand of football under Roberto Di Matteo and they must surely be serious contenders for the Premier League title this season. As for Reading, if they continue to display the spirit and the quality they appeared to possess last night then they will give themselves a great chance of avoiding the drop this season.