Barkley, Hazard lead Chelsea past Southampton
- Hazard puts Saints ahead
- Southampton misses pair of big chances
- Morata strikes late for 3-0
Ross Barkley posted a goal and an assist as Chelsea beat Southampton 3-0 at St. Mary’s on Sunday.
Eden Hazard’s fine campaign continued with another Chelsea goal to open the scoring and Alvaro Morata also scored for the Blues, who take hold of the top spot in the Premier League ahead of Man City’s visit to Liverpool.
Southampton is 16th, three points clear of the drop zone.
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Chelsea was living in the Southampton final third from Moment No. 1, but unable to produce the finishing touch.
How dominant was Chelsea? Blues backstop Kepa Arrizabalaga did not touch the ball until the 21st minute.
Once Saints sprung to life, though, the attack was very real. In-form forward Danny Ings missed a seemingly surefire opener when he planted his foot to meet a cross and popped the ball over the frame.
Wesley Hoedt’s slide tackle of Olivier Giroud in Saints’ box had a bang-bang feel to it, but replays showed that Hoedt did not get a piece of the ball and Chelsea should’ve been at the spot for a penalty kick.
And of course it was Hazard.
As the clock hit 30:00, the Belgian capitalized on a turnover to side-foot Ross Barkley’s perfect pass past Alex McCarthy[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]
1 – Ross Barkley is the first Englishman to both score and assist in a Premier League game for Chelsea since Frank Lampard in December 2013 vs Sunderland. Rise.
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) October 7, 2018
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Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg found Bertrand at the back post in a mirror image of Ings’ chance in the first half, with the same result.
And again Chelsea was ready to punish at the other end, with Olivier Giroud scissor kicking Willian’s free kick into the path of Barkley for 2-0.
Arrizabalaga tipped a long distance Nathan Redmond rip off the bar and over in the 79th minute, and McCarthy stopped substitute Alvaro Morata at the other end within a minute.
Ings tested Arrizabalaga with a distance effort of his own, but the Chelsea keeper pushed it over the bar in the 84th minute.
Morata scored in stoppage time to round off the scoring.