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Clinical Chelsea sweep Schalke aside

FC Schalke 04 0-5 Chelsea FC
José Mourinho's side clinched first place in Group G in considerable style, equalling their biggest UEFA Champions League away win in Gelsenkirchen.

Schalke 0-5 Chelsea: the story in photos ©AFP/Getty Images

Chelsea seal first place in Group G with record-equalling away win
John Terry heads in second-minute opener from Cesc Fàbregas corner
Willian smashes in second before Jan Kirchhoff own goal
Didier Drogba and Ramires add further strikes late on
Next games: Maribor v Schalke, Chelsea v Sporting (10 December)

Chelsea FC will go through to the round of 16 as Group G winners after equalling their record UEFA Champions League away victory at FC Schalke 04.

The Premier League leaders scored with virtually their first attack of the game as Eden Hazard threaded the ball through for Diego Costa. The Spain striker cut inside before seeing his attempt well saved by Ralf Fährmann, but the resulting corner proved fatal for the hosts as John Terry rose to head in Cesc Fàbregas's delivery.

Conceding just two minutes in had an obvious effect on Schalke, who allowed the visitors to stroke the ball around at will. It took an important challenge from Felipe Santana to prevent Costa from racing through again and, though Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting's deflected effort looped onto the bar at the other end, Chelsea's second was only a matter of time.

It arrived on 29 minutes as the result of a sharp move involving Willian and Hazard. The Belgian's return pass afforded the Brazilian time to drive his finish under Fährmann.

The Blues might have had four or five by the break had Costa not slipped at the vital moment after seizing on a Marco Höger back pass and rounding Fährmann, who showed good reactions moments later to foil Oscar. Instead they had to settle for three as Jan Kirchhoff rose to nod firmly into his own net from another Fàbregas corner.

With the points as good as secured, Chelsea were able to lessen the pace in the second period and manage their advantage. Branislav Ivanović might have added to it with a spectacular volley from Willian's cross, but the Serbian right-back's effort seared narrowly past the upright.

Schalke slowly began to see more of the ball but any hopes of making the scoreline respectable were dashed as Chelsea hit another two in quick succession. First Willian brought down a glorious pass from Fàbregas before rolling across for Didier Drogba to tap into the empty net.

The Ivorian then turned provider for fellow substitute Ramires, who headed in unchallenged to complete a victory that also equalled Schalke's record European home loss. More pertinently for the Royal Blues, it leaves them third in Group G ahead of the final fixtures.