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Page last updated at 13:37 GMT, Saturday, 18 October 2008 14:37 UK

Middlesbrough 0-5 Chelsea

By Ian Hughes

Frank Lampard
Lampard scored Chelsea's fourth, rounding off a superb move

Chelsea completely outclassed Middlesbrough to keep their place at the top of the Premier League table.

Salomon Kalou began the rout, stroking in after Juliano Belletti's shot had been blocked and Belletti made it 2-0 with a stunning 30-yard shot.

Kalou got his second when his low strike deflected off David Wheater before Frank Lampard's diving header rounded off a superb Chelsea breakaway.

Florent Malouda tapped in the fifth after Nicolas Anelka had hit the post.

Chelsea's intent was clear from the start - move the ball quickly, play with fluency and control and retain possession.

They achieved their aims to the extent that Boro barely had a kick from the outset.


And while Boro failed to put pressure on the ball, Kalou, Malouda and full-backs Jose Bosingwa and Wayne Bridge in particular, exploited the space.

It was through Bridge that Chelsea fashioned their opener as the left-back's cross fell to Belletti, whose shot ricocheted off two Boro defenders allowing Kalou to stroke the ball in.

Scolari revels in five-goal rout

More Chelsea goals seemed inevitable as they totally dominated a Boro side short on confidence after only one win in five games.

Only a last-ditch block from Jonathan Grounds prevented Lampard's shot providing the finishing touch to Malouda's low cross from the right.

Soon after the interval, Malouda raced clear after Grounds misjudged the bounce of the ball, but the winger shot wide when he should have scored.

But there was no such profligacy from Belletti when he took aim from 30 yards and arrowed a superb shot into the top corner to finally give Chelsea the second goal they deserved.

The sensational strike had the effect of deflating Boro even further - and Chelsea went on the rampage.

A horrendous day - Southgate

Malouda's exquisite cut-back found Kalou and, with everything going Chelsea's way, the striker's low shot diverted off Wheater to leave keeper Ross Turnbull no chance.

But if Chelsea's third goal was fortunate, their fourth was pure class.

Kalou and Anelka exchanged passes as the Blues came storming forward, before Kalou dinked a perfect cross for Lampard to send a diving header into the corner.

Worse was to come for Boro as four minutes later Anelka broke and sent in a low shot that Turnbull could only spill on to the post and Malouda tucked away the rebound.

Turnbull did much better shortly after when he got down well to save Anelka's shot but by then Boro had been embarrassed and outplayed by a Chelsea team missing seven first-team players.

The Blues remain unbeaten in 2008 and are in sparkling form under Luiz Felipe Scolari.

Middlesbrough boss Gareth Southgate:
"We had a horrendous day and pretty much everything that could have wrong did.

"Their class exposed us and we have got to learn lessons from it. We were poor and there are no excuses.

"If any of our players thought they had arrived in the game this is the harshest of lessons for them.

"Hopefully in the long run it will do as some good as it will show us what we need to do at our place."

Chelsea boss Luiz Felipe Scolari:
"Congratulations to the players because they have won one important game.

"After 10 days away with their national teams we changed many players but those that were on the pitch played better than those that were not on the field.

"They played with style and I do not want to change that. I want the players to play with the ball and to be changing their positions.

"They understand what I want and they work very hard in training."

Middlesbrough: Turnbull, Grounds (John Johnson 54), Wheater, Riggott, Taylor, Aliadiere, Shawky (Digard 65), O'Neil, Adam Johnson (Alves 65), Downing, Mido.
Subs Not Used: Jones, Emnes, Bennett, Walker.

Booked: O'Neil, Alves.

Chelsea: Cudicini, Bosingwa, Terry, Alex, Bridge (Ferreira 65), Belletti, Lampard (Deco 73), Mikel, Kalou, Anelka (Sinclair 78), Malouda.
Subs Not Used: Hilario, Ivanovic, Mancienne, Stoch.

Goals: Kalou 14, Belletti 51, Kalou 53, Lampard 63, Malouda 67.

Att: 29,221

Ref: Phil Dowd (Staffordshire).

BBC Sport Player Rater man of the match:
Chelsea's Salomon Kalou 8.09 (on 90 minutes).

Please note that you can still give the players marks out of 10 on BBC Sport's Player Rater after the match has finished.

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see also
Premier League as it happened
18 Oct 08 |  Premier League
Saturday's football photos
18 Oct 08 |  Football
Player Rater
19 Dec 06 |  Live Text
Ballack sidelined by new setback
17 Oct 08 |  Chelsea

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