Newcastle humbled as Chelsea hand them a beating at Stamford Bridge

Guss Hiddink watched his side run out 5-1 winners.

Newcastle, Chelsea, Jonjo Shelvey

Image: Adam Davy / PA Wire/Press Association Images

Steve McClaren would have known that there was a tough task ahead of him at Stamford Bridge this evening, and after five minutes he realised the size of the challenge. 

Diego Costa was on hand to turn the ball in with his toe after a cross from Willian, beating Rob Elliot and giving Chelsea an early lead. 

Things got worse very quickly for the team from the north-east as Rolando Aarons made a mistake a few minutes later in defence which Pedro latched on to and tucked the ball home with aplomb. 

Before the game had even reached the 20 minute mark, the whole thing was wrapped up in a neat little bow for Guss Hiddink's side as Costa rolled a pass into Willian, and he shot past Elliot who had seen three goals fly past him in the first 17 minutes. 

Despite their advantage, Chelsea refused to let up and pushed from the front as Costa looks to have rediscovered the urgency and energy that his play lacked under Jose Mourinho's spell in charge this season. 

Image:  Matt Dunham / AP/Press Association Images

The only sour note for Chelsea in that first half was the unfortunate injury to John Terry, who looked to land awkwardly after contesting a ball with Aleksandar Mitrovic and was subbed off.

The extent of that knock has yet to be revealed, but speaking after the match, Hiddink was unsure if Terry would be available for the game against Paris Saint Germain in the Champions League in midweek: "Tomorrow we'll know more but it has hopefully just a small muscular problem. We have just two days to recover so we'll see what will be the outcome". 

The second half featured more goals, as Pedro got another off a beautiful lofted through ball from Cesc Fabregas that dropped perfectly for his fellow Spaniard, who smashed it past Elliot.

Image: Adam Davy / PA Wire/Press Association Images

After Costa had been subbed off to a standing ovation from the crowd, his replacement Bertrand Traore added the fifth of the night, with a relatively simple finish after some great interplay between Cesar Azpilicueta and Eden Hazard down Newcastle's left-hand side. 

The consolation came from Andros Townsed, who picked the ball up just inside the Chelsea half of the pitch and ran straight at goal, before firing one past Thibaut Courtois. The former Tottenham player refused to celebrate however, simply shaking his head in disbelief at the situation that he has found himself in at his new club. 

 

Image: Matt Dunham / AP/Press Association Images

Hiddink highlighted that the success for Chelsea came from their quick start: "We tried to play from the first minute and surprise them. We had an early goal and an early second goal and that made them a little less stable [...] If you can score early then you don't have to press so hard in the closing stages". 

McClaren echoed that sentiment, adding that "last week we won the game in the first ten minutes, the way we set off, this week we lost it in the first ten minutes". 

He added that "the majority of the goals were caused by ourselves, giving the ball away cheaply [...] we couldn't handle the press, couldn't play through it and paid for it". 

The stats won't make pleasant reading for any of the management team at Newcastle, who have lost their last five games on the road, scoring just two goals in the process. 

Image: PA Graphics / PA Wire/Press Association Image

McClaren highlighted that in the dressing afterwards, saying "that just epitomised what we've been like away from home, but I've just said don't let that derail us. On our day we can be a good team and we've proved that, but today we caused our own problems". 

With 18 days between this game and Newcastle's next fixture, the rest and recuperation time might come as a blessing for the team, as they look to get injured players back fit and a number of new signings bedded in.

McCalren still believes that the team will show enough steel to survive, although there was little evidence to base that on given their performance on Saturday.