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The BBC's David Oates
"A stroll in the sunshine for Chelsea"
 real 28k

Sunday, 14 May, 2000, 18:49 GMT 19:49 UK
Blues warm up in style

Chelsea 4-0 Derby

Chelsea head off to next week's FA Cup final after a second half demolition of Derby at Stamford Bridge.

Derby rightly felt hard done by when referee Jeff Winter failed to award them a 25th minute penalty when the scoresheet was still blank.

After the break, Gianfranco Zola, Gustavo Poyet, Roberto di Matteo and Tore Andre Flo all scored after a series of wasted Chelsea chances.

Zola's neat finish punished Jacob Laursen's error less than two minutes after the break.

Poyet's unstoppable header in the 54th minute made it two before Di Matteo fired in a Dennis Wise pass to make it 3-0 with nearly 20 minutes left.

Flo extravagantly flicked in a stoppage-time fourth to make sure he stayed one ahead of 18-goal midfielder Poyet in the Chelsea scoring stakes.

Chelsea injuries

The only downside for the Blues was a recurrence of an ankle injury for Spanish right back Albert Ferrer, who returned after missing five games.

He lasted only 30 minutes before he had to hobble off and colossal French centre-back Marcel Desailly was also withdrawn in the second half with a similar complaint.

Vialli had also left out Liberian striker George Weah, who has been suffering a back strain, while Ed de Goey was rested after 58 consecutive games this season.

It might not have been such a sunshine stroll for Chelsea had Winter given Derby the penalty they were convinced they should have hadduring the first half.

The referee was way behind the play but perfectly in line with the incident as Celestine Babayaro wrestled Dean Sturridge to the ground inside the area.

It might have been a penalty,although the Rams were lucky not to be behind by then.

Wasteful Blues

Zola wasted two one-on-one opportunities with keeper Mart Poom before completely mistiming an unmarked eight-yard header.

Flo and Di Matteo both struck the same post and it was not until the 23rd minute that debutant Chelsea keeper Carlo Cudicini was seriously tested.

Lars Bohinen's stringing drive from 25 yards was only half-cleared, but it flew straight at the Italian goalkeeper.

Poyet also missed twice from promising positions in the first half before everything came right after the break.


Chelsea: Cudicini, Ferrer, Desailly, Leboeuf, Babayaro, Di Matteo, Wise, Deschamps, Poyet, Flo, Zola. Subs: de Goey, Ambrosetti, Morris, Melchiot, Terry.

Derby: Poom, Delap, Laursen, Elliott, Dorigo, Burley, Bohinen, Johnson, Sturridge, Burton, Christie. Subs: Oakes, Jackson, Boertien, Murray, Riggott.

Referee: J Winter (Stockton-on-Tees)

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