Manager Frank Lampard says Chelsea need to “remain humble” after moving second in the Premier League table following a solid win over Newcastle.
An own goal by Federico Fernandez and a Tammy Abraham strike secured a fifth successive victory in all competitions.
Chelsea’s fifth league win of the season had left them briefly on top of the table, ahead of overnight leaders Leicester on goal difference, before Tottenham moved two points clear at the summit after beating Manchester City later on Saturday.
“I know we are top of the league for five minutes but we have to think about the big picture,” Lampard said, speaking before the Tottenham game.
“We know that there is improvement and work to be done. We have to remain humble.”
Fernandez’s own goal set the Blues on their way, the Argentine defender poking the ball over his own line while under pressure from Ben Chilwell.
Chelsea oozed quality, Newcastle keeper Karl Darlow producing excellent saves to deny the excellent Timo Werner as well as a close-range Abraham header.
But Abraham made sure of the points with a smart finish following Werner’s pass after Newcastle had threatened through Isaac Hayden and Joelinton, while Sean Longstaff hit the bar for the hosts towards the end.
Six clean sheets in seven for Blues
This was the first of nine games in the next four weeks for Lampard’s side, and the Chelsea boss had to plan for it without several key players who were still away on international duty 48 hours before this match.
It had prompted Lampard to call for Saturday early kick-offs to be scrapped immediately after an international break, but the Blues made a ferocious start that caught Newcastle cold.
Werner and Abraham had already been thwarted by Darlow when Chelsea swept into an early lead, Fernandez inadvertently turning Mason Mount’s cross past his own keeper after a short corner.
That was Chelsea’s 35th goal in 14 league and cup games but it should have been more before half-time.
Werner, who had an effort disallowed for offside late on, was a creative force throughout but the Germany forward was also wasteful.
When Newcastle did mount a rare attack, Chelsea were solid at the back.
Antonio Rudiger, starting in place of 36-year-old Thiago Silva who had played for Brazil in midweek, marked his first league start of the season with an important block to deny Allan Saint-Maximin as the Blues chalked up a sixth clean sheet in seven games.
Abraham’s second goal in as many league games made sure of the points before Mount went close to adding a third.
Wilson a big miss for Magpies
Without leading scorer Callum Wilson, Newcastle failed to score for the second successive game.
Wilson, missing with a hamstring injury, has netted six of his side’s 10 top-flight goals this season but Newcastle never recovered after going behind early.
“That’s the fifth time we’ve been one down with five or 10 minutes played and we have to address that,” said Magpies boss Steve Bruce.
Darlow kept his side in the match with some important saves before Abraham’s second-half finish killed the game off.
Newcastle’s cause was not helped by the loss of Jamaal Lascelles to injury, the captain failing to appear at the start of the second half after going down heavily.
Bruce sent on Miguel Almiron, who only arrived back from international duty with Paraguay on Friday, and Andy Carroll to try and rescue a point.
Carroll looked set to score his first goal since returning to Newcastle for a second spell 15 months ago, but his attempt in stoppage time was deflected wide for a corner.
“I’m frustrated because we can’t get a result,” added Bruce, whose side have won once in five games. “I make no excuses but we’ve played three of the top six in the last few weeks.”
‘Hugely important win’ – what they said
Newcastle manager Steve Bruce: “We were better in the second half and we went higher up the pitch and had some big moments.
“There was a lot to like about that second-half performance. Unfortunately we couldn’t take our chances and Chelsea punished us with a poor goal that we gave away.”
Chelsea boss Frank Lampard: “I’m pleased. It was a dangerous game for us. We lost here last season.
“We could have scored more goals – that was a frustration – but generally the lads dealt with it very well. It’s a hugely important win.”
Home discomforts for Magpies – the stats
- Newcastle have lost five of their last seven home matches in the Premier League.
- Since the start of 2019-20, Tammy Abraham has scored 23 goals in all competitions, 11 more than any other Chelsea player.
- Newcastle boss Steve Bruce has won only two of his 24 Premier League games as manager against Chelsea.
- Keeper Edouard Mendy has seven clean sheets in nine appearances for Chelsea in all competitions.
- Since his debut in September 2014, no player has scored more own goals in the Premier League than Federico Fernandez (five – level with Lewis Dunk).
While Newcastle visit Crystal Palace in the Premier League next Friday (20:00 GMT), Chelsea are in France on Tuesday to face Rennes in Group E of the Champions League (17:55). They then host Tottenham on Sunday, 29 November (16:30).
- 19ManquilloSubstituted forAlmirónat 65′minutes
- 6LascellesSubstituted forSchärat 45′minutes
- 23MurphyBooked at 45mins
- 36S Longstaff
- 14HaydenBooked at 39mins
- 10Saint-MaximinSubstituted forCarrollat 74′minutes
- 21ChilwellSubstituted forEmersonat 82′minutes
- 22ZiyechSubstituted forGiroudat 87′minutes
- 11WernerSubstituted forHudson-Odoiat 76′minutes
Match ends, Newcastle United 0, Chelsea 2.
Second Half ends, Newcastle United 0, Chelsea 2.
Attempt blocked. Mateo Kovacic (Chelsea) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Mason Mount.
Attempt blocked. Jacob Murphy (Newcastle United) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.
Corner, Newcastle United. Conceded by Antonio Rüdiger.
Attempt blocked. Andy Carroll (Newcastle United) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Isaac Hayden.
Tammy Abraham (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Jamal Lewis (Newcastle United).
Foul by Emerson (Chelsea).
Miguel Almirón (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Offside, Chelsea. Reece James tries a through ball, but Olivier Giroud is caught offside.
Foul by Reece James (Chelsea).
Sean Longstaff (Newcastle United) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Substitution, Chelsea. Olivier Giroud replaces Hakim Ziyech.
Corner, Newcastle United. Conceded by Kurt Zouma.
Corner, Chelsea. Conceded by Fabian Schär.
Substitution, Chelsea. Emerson replaces Ben Chilwell.
Attempt blocked. Callum Hudson-Odoi (Chelsea) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Tammy Abraham.
Corner, Newcastle United. Conceded by Édouard Mendy.
Attempt saved. Miguel Almirón (Newcastle United) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Joelinton.