Chelsea FC rediscovered their power and panache to put their UEFA Champions League matchday one disappointment firmly in the past. Ramires scored twice as José Mourinho's team easily cut apart an FC Steaua Bucureşti side who have conceded seven goals in two Group E fixtures.
Ramires struck either side of an own goal from Daniel Georgievski but had to defer to the outstanding André Schürrle and Juan Mata for man-of-the match honours. Frank Lampard concluded the scoring with a low drive in off the upright.
After the incessant rain that had put parts of Bucharest under water, players and spectators alike were grateful for the Arena Națională roof. Under it, Chelsea made a lively start, with Mata, granted a rare start by his manager, eager for possession.
There was bite and energy to their play and Schürrle, one of five changes to the team that lost 2-1 to FC Basel 1893 two weeks ago, clearly had the beating of his full-back. Although Chelsea lost Fernando Torres to injury with only ten minutes gone, it hardly disrupted them.
Steaua struggled to find the same degree of fluidity and did not enjoy the options on the ball available to those in white. Nevertheless, the raucous support from the home fans promised to serve as their 12th man.
The Romanian outfit had just begun to impose themselves when Chelsea stitched together the move that would lead to their first goal. Once again Schürrle easily skirted past Georgievski and his pass found Samuel Eto'o. There was no power behind his shot, but Ramires was alive to the situation and nipped in ahead of goalkeeper Ciprian Tătăruşanu.
Petr Čech had to palm away a shot and then came to the rescue when Oscar left his back pass short. However, Chelsea soon doubled their advantage with Laurenţiu Reghecampf's men desperately short of cover. Mata released Eto'o and although his drive was beaten out by Tătăruşanu, the ball cannoned off the luckless Georgievski and into the net.
Lampard connected only with thin air from Mata's cutback, yet it merely delayed the third goal until the 55th minute, when Schürrle extricated himself from a tight spot and sped away. His pass found Oscar, who fed Ramires – the midfielder's finish inside the near post was unerring. Mourinho gave Schürrle a hug on the touchline and how richly he deserved it.
The only worry for Chelsea as the contest petered out – during which time Mata and Oscar rattled the woodwork – was a collision for Čech with the upright after tipping over Cristian Tănase's clever lob. The goalkeeper carried on after treatment and stood up well when Nicolae Stanciu shot hard. Then, in the final minutes, Lampard made it four.
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