Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 22 July 2014

Wolves sink struggling champions

Carlo Ancelotti

Chelsea's miserable Barclays Premier League campaign plumbed new depths with a 1-0 defeat at Wolves.

Jose Bosingwa's own goal after only five minutes decided the contest as Carlo Ancelotti's men saw their faint title hopes all but disappear completely.

Salomon Kalou missed a golden second-half chance, shooting wide when clean through, and Didier Drogba shot against the outside of the post, but resilient Wolves stood firm and could have had a second goal if Stephen Hunt's free-kick had dipped under rather than hit the bar.

Chelsea came into the game on their worst run of form during the reign of owner Roman Abramovich, having taken just 10 points from their previous 10 league games, and they got off to an awful start.

Ronald Zubar's fierce shot from 35 yards tested Petr Cech, who parried it away for a corner. And the resulting delivery from Hunt was attacked by Zubar at the near post before Bosingwa turned it unwittingly into his own net.

At the other end Wayne Hennessey had to be alert and stick out a leg to stop Kalou's close-range effort from Florent Malouda's cross.

Chelsea were out very early for the second half and they started with intent, Michael Essien blazing over from outside the area and Ashley Cole seeing his low angled shot from the left of the box comfortably held by Hennessey.

Kalou should have levelled in the 53rd minute when Frank Lampard's clever backheel played him in, but the Ivorian could only drag his left-footed shot wide of the far post as Hennessey came off his line.

But Wolves were standing firm at the back while looking dangerous on the break, and Fletcher should have sent Kevin Doyle through on goal but his pass was poor.

Chelsea were unable to find a way past Hennessey as Wolves secured three precious points in their battle to avoid the drop.