A pair of powerful Reece James finishes saw Chelsea past Newcastle at St James Park to build their lead at the top of the table.
Chelsea dominated the ball from the opening whistle, but had to wait until the last 25 minutes before it started to tell with an opening goal.
Callum Hudson-Odoi wriggled into space on the left wing and floated a cross to the back post. Matt Ritchie thought he had done enough to repel the danger, but James took the ball down, nudged it to his left and then hammered a half volley into the top corner.
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The second was almost identical. After lovely work from substitute Ross Barkley in the middle of the park, he played the ball out to Reece James. His first shot was blocked but the ball bounced back to him and the finish with his right was sublime.
Newcastle had started brightly with a surging run down the left from Ryan Fraser, but he dragged his shot just wide.
After that, they barely saw the ball. The 79% possession Chelsea enjoyed felt even higher as Newcastle retreated deeper and deeper.
The first half was all Chelsea’s but Newcastle will be happy they managed to maintain parity for as long as they did, frustrating Chelsea along the way.
Hakim Ziyech missed a glaring opportunity to put his side one up in but shanked his effort over from six yards.
The Morrocan then had a beautiful goal ruled out for offside too. A beautiful pass from Jorginho split the Newcastle backline and the shot from Ziyech was even better, placing the ball into the far top corner.
A rare start, in for the unwell Mason Mount, should have resulted in a goal and he will be disappointed he didn’t make more of his chance. He was hooked with 30 minutes to play.
Ross Barkley, and Ruben Loftus-Cheek, who came on to replace him added just a little more bite in attack and Chelsea never looked likely to lose the ball for longer than a few moments.
Jorginho added the gloss with a cool penalty after Kai Havertz was clipped by Darlow in the box. The finish was assured even if the hop-skip-and-jump that has served him so well is softening slightly.
The win keeps Chelsea at the top of the table as the chasing Manchester City and Liverpool dropped points.
Newcastle will be disappointed with their performance, even if the result was always going to be beyond them, in their first game back at St James Park since their controversial takeover.
With Newcastle sharing the foot of the table with Norwich, their new owners will be hoping to turn things around quickly to avoid a relegation scrap.


This was never going to be an easy assignment for Newcastle against the reigning European champions, but they made it even harder for themselves by leaving their main threat so isolated.
There is no doubt that Allan Saint-Maximin is Newcastle’s best player. His pace, trickery and penchant for producing the unexpected could have caused Chelsea problems on the break, It was minute 40 before he had a proper run with the ball and with no one beside him to help, Andreas Christensen gobbled up the chance.
With Callum Wilson ineffective too, Newcastle were left with huge gaps between their front men and retreating backline.
Saint-Maximin will surely be central to Newcastle’s new age in the short term at least, but when the team around him is this poor, he looks just as desperate.

Goal hero Reece James celebrates with Ben Chilwell

Image credit: Getty Images


The right-back gave a masterclass in striking the ball with two beautifully taken goals with both feet. On another day the England international would have had a hat-trick of half volleys.
But it was his work in stretching the pitch that pulled Newcastle out of position. He burst past his man at will and always seemed to be in the right place to receive the ball.
With two of the highest scoring fullbacks in the league, Chelsea’s striker injury-induced headaches won’t last long.


Newcastle: Karl Darlow 6, Matt Ritchie 5, Ciaran Clark 5, Jamaal Lascelles 4, Emil Krafth 5, Javier Manquillo 6, Ryan Fraser 6, Isaac Hayden 5, Sean Longstaff 6, Allan Saint-Maximin 4, Callum Wilson 6. Subs: Jonjo Shelvey 5, Miguel Almiron 5, Joseph Willock 6.
Chelsea: Edouard Mendy 6, Andreas Christensen 7, Thiago Silva 6, Antonio Rudiger 6, Reece James 8, N’Golo Kante 7, Jorginho 7, Ben Chilwell 6, Hakim Ziyech 5, Kai Havertz 6, Callum Hudson-Odoi 7. Subs: Saúl Niguez 5, Ruben Loftus-Cheek 6, Ross Barkley 6.


79’ Penalty scored! Jorginho takes it with such confidence. Straight down the middle after the keeper went early.
78’ Goal! Now that's ridiculous. After lovely work from Barkley in the middle he plays the ball out to Reece James. He has one shot. Blocked. The ball bounces back to him and the finish with his right was sublime.
65’ Goal! A ridiculous finish from Reece James. Matt Ritchie does well at the back post but the ball falls to James who has time to take a touch, think about what's for dinner, and then hammer a half volley into the top corner.
62’ Lovely skill! Saint-Maximin wakes up and makes Chilwell look a bit silly with a lovely piece of skill. Chelsea clear.
56’ Yellow! Ziyech has a mad minute. Finding Havertz on the edge of the box with a lovely pass - the shot is blocked. Then chasing back, he upends Saint-Maximin who was gathering momentum.
48’ Hits the post! Ziyech has laid claim to the pocket of space in front of the Newcastle back line and sizes up another shot that slams back off the upright. He is about six inches either side away from being a fantastic footballer.
33’ Close! Some lovely work down the right and the ball falls to Ziyech six yards out. He spoons it well over. That should have been the lead.
28’ GOAL.... ruled offside. A beautiful pass from Jorginho splits the Newcastle back line. The shot from Ziyech was even better, placed into the far top corner. But he was just offside. Would have been gorgeous.
18’ Yellow card! Again Chelsea finding joy on the right but Hayden has had enough of that. He overruns the ball and plants his studs into Andreas Christensen. Nasty.
1’ Chance! First chance falls to Newcastle. Ryan Fraser finds space on the left but drags his shot across the face of goal. Newcastle starting strong.


Newcastle have kept only two clean sheets since the start of last season. Fewer than any other club in the top flight during that time.
This is Newcastle’s joint longest winless run since the start of a Premier League season, 10 games without a win.
N’Golo Kante has played 200 league games, claiming a couple of titles for his efforts.
Chelsea racked up four league wins on the bounce for only the second time under Thomas Tuchel.
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