Chelsea welcomed Aston Villa to Stamford Bridge for their second Premier League match of the season just three days after their 2-0 win over Hull City. The match had been brought forward from August 31 to allow for Chelsea's involvement in the UEFA Super Cup in Prague on August 30.
Villa were looking to avenge their last visit to Stamford Bridge that saw them suffer an 8-0 defeat just before Christmas in 2012. Paul Lambert's side were buoyed by their 3-1 win over Arsenal in the opening game of the season and refused to be intimidated by the Blues.
Chelsea's early breakthrough came via an own goal that Antonio Luna could do nothing to prevent, but Christian Benteke's leveller on the stroke of half-time changed the game.
The Blues were dominant in possession but struggled to find the breakthrough in the second half, until a Frank Lampard free kick found Branislav Ivanovic to give them a 2-1 win. The defender had been booked for a foul on Benteke that many thought deserved a red card, and there were plenty of shouts for a John Terry handball late in the game.
Still, Jose Mourinho's men hung on and were rewarded with all three points, putting them top of the table ahead of their crunch clash with Manchester United on Bank Holiday Monday.
Here are some important lessons learned from this hard-fought Chelsea win.
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