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Wednesday, 27 November 2013
football. Basel 1-0 Chelsea: Salah strike stuns Mourinho again
A performance lacking in urgency, ambition and imagination was
punished by the livewire Egyptian late on as the Swiss side completed a
famous double over the Blues The Eygptian produced a clinical finish
at the St. Jakob Park on Tuesday to ensure the Swiss champions
leapfrogged Schalke into second place in Group E, while Chelsea
qualified despite the defeat.
Basel had ended the Premier League
club's 29-match home unbeaten run in the group stages of the competition
back in September with a shock 2-1 win at Stamford Bridge and they
repeated the dose courtesy of Salah's dramatic late winner. Murat
Yakin's side now head into their final group game against Schalke next
month knowing they only need a point to progress to the last 16.
were poor on the night and failed to register a single shot on target,
but Schalke's failure to beat Steaua Bucharest ensured their progress.
replaced Eden Hazard in the only change to the Chelsea side that beat
West Ham 3-0 at the weekend, while fit-again striker Fernando Torres was
back on the bench.
Goalkeeper Yann Sommer, midfielder Salah and defender Ivan Ivanov all returned to the Basel starting line-up.
manager Jose Mourinho warned Basel that his side were much improved
since the Swiss champions' shock win at Stamford Bridge in September,
but there was no evidence of that as the home side dominated the opening
Petr Cech had to be alert to palm away a Taulant Xhaka
free-kick from wide on the left after only two minutes and Chelsea
failed to heed the warning when they backed off 10 minutes later and
Fabian Frei's strike was saved by the Czech Republic goalkeeper.
Obi Mikel then cleared off the line after Ivanov got a toe to a Fabian
Schar corner and Salah was twice denied by the busy Cech as Chelsea
remained on the back foot.
There was a blow for the visitors three minutes before half-time when Samuel Eto'o was carried off, with Torres replacing him.
Hazard replaced the ineffective Oscar nine minutes into the second half as Chelsea struggled to get going.
Belgium winger and Torres provided more of an attacking threat and
Mourinho's men were far more solid at the back after the break.
should have done better when he was played in down the right 12 minutes
from time, but the Brazil midfielder lacked composure.
And Basel snatched a crucial winner when Salah raced away following Schar's pass, and he kept his nerve with a clinical finish to stun Chelsea.