So much for the recovery. Chelsea’s traumatic title defence has endured its latest nadir, the champions beaten at home by Bournemouth to ensure all that optimism generated by a trio of clean sheets has been knocked out of them yet again. Eddie Howe looked as shocked as anyone as his substitute, Glenn Murray, scored the contest’s only goal within two minutes of his introduction. José Mourinho at his side might actually have seen this coming. For all that the hosts monopolised the ball, they were horribly profligate here.
Chances were passed up regularly, their front line too gummy for comfort and, as the game progressed, there was always the threat they might be undone on the break. Junior Stanislas’s corner eight minutes from time was duly palmed down by Thibaut Courtois and hooked back into the centre by Steve Cook for Murray, played onside by Abdul Baba Rahman, to nod through Gary Cahill on the goalline. By becoming the first newly promoted team to win here since 2001, Bournemouthleapt out of the relegation places and left Mourinho with a pounding headache ahead of a midweek visit from Porto in the Champions League.