Shakhtar Donetsk vs. Chelsea: Score, Analysis and Grades
Chelsea defeated Shakhtar Donetsk 3-2 on a dramatic stoppage-time goal from Victor Moses.
After trading goals in the first 10 minutes, Chelsea went on the counter attack late in the half, and Juan Mata swung a ball in behind Shakhtar's defense, putting goalkeeper Andriy Pyatov in a compromising position. The keeper flew off his line and headed the ball away, but it landed directly at Oscar's feet, and Chelsea's youngster smashed the ball into the back of the net from an impossible distance.
Although the Blues were glowing with confidence due to their 2-1 halftime advantage, their lead did not last long as Shakhtar winger Willian scored an equalizer just two minutes after play resumed.
The match seemed destined for a tie, but Moses headed in a corner kick from Mata in the closing moments to give the Blues the three points that they desperately needed.
Fernando Torres, Chelsea: B
While centre-forwards often get the glory, their job is not always pretty. Torres proved that hustle and scrappiness can sometimes lead to a goal. The Spaniard's effort and pressure led to Chelsea's first goal as Pyatov attempted to clear an ill-advised back pass, but it deflected off Torres and into the net.
Torres continued playing extremely well with the Blues' trio of playmakers, and he was able to hold the ball and allow Chelsea to be dangerous in this match. However, he faded away at times during the match, and this forced the Blues to pull out a nerve-racking finish instead of saving their supporters from the drama.
Willian, Shakhtar Donetsk: A+
Chelsea pursued Willian over the summer, and it was clear why they showed so much interest after his magnificent performance. He caused the Blues defense fits and is the reason that the hosts nearly failed to earn full points.
Willian's brace proved that if he had moved to Chelsea, he not only would have challenged Marouane Fellaini for the Premiership's best hair, but also would have dazzled with his skills. After this performance, the Blues will certainly still explore options to bring him to London.
Oscar, Chelsea: B+
Oscar ended up being the young Brazilian midfielder that Chelsea signed during the transfer window, and he proved that the team did not make a mistake.
His goal was a magnificent piece of technique and is indicative of the creativity and talent he possesses. He once again looked to be a perfect fit in the midfield with Mata and Eden Hazard. The future is extremely bright for Oscar as long as he keeps producing moments of brilliance like he did in this match.
Luiz Adriano, Shakhtar Donetsk: B-
Adriano did not have a poor match, but it would be difficult to describe his performance as anything more than average. The Ukranian side needed more from their centre-forward if they were going to record an upset at Stamford Bridge.
He ultimately did not deliver, and while an exceptional outing from Willian was enough make Chelsea nervous, Shakhtar will be looking for more out of Adriano in future matches.
Juan Mata, Chelsea: A-
Mata's play has been magnificent recently, and his crossing led to two of Chelsea's three goals. His cross forced the confusion that led to Oscar's strike, and his wonderfully placed corner gave the Blues' their winner.
His level of play has been remarkable over the past several weeks, and his passing was once again top-class in this match.
Chelsea now moves into second place in Group E with seven points, while Shakhtar's six points remains the same and is only good enough for third. Juventus is atop the table with 10 points after beating FC Nordsjælland 4-0.
The Blues will take on Juve two weeks from now in Italy, while the Ukrainians will head to Denmark.
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