Fernando Torres marked his 100th start for Chelsea with a brace in a 3-0 win away to Schalke as Jose Mourinho’s side safely negotiated a tough test in Champions League Group E.
Schalke were punished for slack defending as Torres opened the scoring in the fifth minute and, as the hosts pushed forward in search of an equalizer,
the Spaniard netted again at the end of a second-half breakaway.
The closest Schalke came to equalizing came when skipper Benedikt Höwedes headed a good chance wide in the 65th minute, but any hopes they had of
obtaining a positive result were ended three minutes later when the Premier League side doubled their lead on the break.
Hazard started the counter-attack with a pass to Oscar, and the Brazilian drove into the box and held off Japanese full-back Atsuto Uchida before
squaring for Torres, who kept a cool head to round Hildebrand and score.
With the home side having lost all shape, Hazard ran through to make it 3-0 in the 87th minute, ignoring Torres to finish emphatically into the far corner and seal a fine win on Chelsea’s first visit to Germany since the 2012 final triumph in Munich.
The oft-maligned forward might even have had a hat-trick, but he hit the woodwork with a header and Eden Hazard ignored the chance to pass to the
Spaniard when he went through alone to seal the win late on.
Chelsea were deserving winners as they comfortably soaked up everything that Schalke threw at them in Gelsenkirchen, and the London club now find
themselves level with Schalke on six points at the top of the group after Basel were held 1-1 away by Steaua Bucharest in the night’s other game.
“I told the players after the Basel match (which Chelsea lost 2-1) that we did garbage and we had to clean it,” Mourinho told Sky Sports television after the game. “We did it in the best possible way with two wins away and now we are in good conditions to qualify and we can also try to finish first.”
In the other match of the evening between an English and German side, Borussia Dortmund beat Arsenal 2-1 at the Emirates Stadium.
Polish striker Robert Lewandowski scored the winner in the 82nd minute slotting home a cross on the volley.
The German side scored first through Henrikh Mkhitaryan when he drove in a low shot in the first half.
But shortly before half-time Arsenal equalized through Olivier Giroud. The French striker fired into an empty net after a cross from Bacary Sagna was badly dealt with by the Dortmund defence.
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