Abuja – Willian ran the show in the absence of Eden Hazard as Chelsea thrashed an abject Stoke City 5-0 to go provisionally second in the English Premier League on Saturday.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the result meant Chelsea leap-frogged Manchester United to stay 13 points behind leaders Manchester City who play on Sunday.
The Blues dominated from the start in spite of resting Belgian star Hazard ahead of next week’s clash at Arsenal.
Antonio Rudiger headed home Willian’s free-kick in the third minute to put his team in control.
Danny Drinkwater broke Stoke’s spirits six minutes later as he rifled a half-volley home from nearly 25 metres to net a spectacular first goal for Chelsea.
Willian teed up Pedro for the third in the 23rd minute.
The Brazilian capped a superb display by slotting home the fourth from the penalty kick spot near the end after being fouled by Geoff Cameron.
Davide Zappacosta slammed home a fifth goal late on to complete a hefty rout.(Reuters/NAN)