Scolari delivers as Blues rout Portsmouth
London, August 17:
Chelsea manager Luiz Felipe Scolari enjoyed a spectacular debut as his side turned on the style to rout Portsmouth 4-0 on Sunday.
Goals from Joe Cole and Nicolas Anelka put Scolari’s team in control before Frank Lampard’s penalty capped the most impressive 45 minutes you will see this season. Deco added a final flourish with a stunning strike in the last minute.
While it is only one game and Scolari clearly inherited a talented squad, the Brazilian has given his players the freedom to express their gifts in a way that promises quite a season. With Didier Drogba injured, Scolari deployed Anelka as a lone striker. With the exception of John Obi Mikel — charged with more defensive duties — Scolari’s five-man midfield were able to interchange and join the attack at will.
It was an awesome sight. Lampard set the tone with a stinging long-range shot before Chelsea broke the deadlock in the 12th minute. Deco’s flick was chested back by Anelka to Michael Ballack and the German unfurled a sumptuous pass towards Cole, who kept his composure to drive a low shot past James into the far corner.
Anelka headed in the second for Chelsea in the 26th. Penetrating move in first
half by Chelsea in the stoppage time ended with Sylvain Distin blocking Cole’s shot with his hand. Referee Mike Dean pointed to the spot and Lampard converted the penalty kick.
Deco capped Scolari’s perfect day when he smashed a swerving shot into the top corner in the 89th minute.