Goalscorer Gary Cahill was delighted with Chelsea’s dominant display as they secured a 4-0 Champions League Group G win over 10-man Maccabi Tel Aviv.
Cahill broke the deadlock after home goalkeeper Predrag Rajkovic tipped his initial header on to the post and Maccabi were left with an even steeper task when former Chelsea man Tal Ben Haim was sent off for kicking out at Diego Costa.
A scrappy feel to the second half was not to Chelsea’s advantage before Willian netted his latest brilliant free-kick in the 73rd minute.
That cleared the way for Oscar and Kurt Zouma, on for injured captain John Terry, to add gloss to the scoreline.
Chelsea lie level on points with Porto at the top of the standings after Dynamo Kiev, themselves two points further back, sprung a surprise win in Portugal to set up a three-way fight for qualification on the final matchweek.
“I thought we dominated the game from start to finish,” Cahill told BT Sport.
“It was not only a good result but a good performance from us.
“It all boils down to the Porto game at Stamford Bridge for us to top the table.
“I was due a bit of luck [on his goal]. He did well to save it, I thought, and it’s come back off the post and I’ve managed to get the rebound.
“I think, first and foremost, we needed the result for the group to take it into that last game but we need confidence and we need momentum and it gets us going in the right direction.”
Willian’s scored his fourth goal in the Champions League this term and sixth overall – all of which have come from free-kicks.
Cahill praised the Brazil international as a shining light amid what has often been a dire campaign for the reigning Premier League champions.
“From the start of the season he’s been fantastic. He’s taken it up to another level individually,” he added.
“Anywhere around that 18 yard box when he gets a free-kick, around the D, it feels like it’s going to be a goal.
“We see him practising it in training. It’s not luck.”
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