Champions League

Chelsea off to solid start

2011-09-13 22:51
David Luiz (AP)

London - Centreback David Luiz was the unlikely first scorer while Juan Mata made it 2-0 with the last kick of the game as Chelsea began their Champions League Group E campaign with a win over Bayer Leverkusen at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday.

The curly-topped 24-year-old Luiz curled the ball around the German defence and into the far corner of the net after a superb 67th minute build-up involving Ashley Cole and Fernando Torres to put Chelsea ahead en route to a hard-fought victory in a tough group opener.

Juan Mata added the second with the last kick of the game in stoppage time to give Chelsea a rather flattering 2-0 victory.

A minute before Luiz scored, Leverkusen almost took the lead when former Chelsea favourite Michael Ballack advanced on goal with only Petr Cech to beat, but the Czech keeper blocked his shot.

Both teams had the ball in the net inside the opening four minutes, but both goals were disallowed by the officials.

Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas, in charge of his first Champions League match, left veterans John Terry and Frank Lampard out of the starting line-up, and his gamble paid off as a youthful looking Chelsea team picked up three valuable points.

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