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Chelsea enthroned English champion in style


chelsea_championsCHELSEA clinched the Barclays Premier League title in style as Didier Drogba struck a second-half hat-trick in their 8-0 thrashing of 10-man Wigan.

The Blues went ahead in the sixth minute when Nicolas Anelka finished after Florent Malouda showed good strength in the area, and they were all but home and hose after 32 minutes when Gary Caldwell hauled down Frank Lampard in the area.

The Wigan man saw red and Lampard converted from the spot to make it 2-0. The second half was effectively a lap of honour for Chelsea as Salomon Kalou scored nine minutes after the restart, Anelka grabbed his second two minutes later, then Drogba struck three times, including a penalty after Mario Melchiot fouled Ashley Cole.

It was the fourth time this season Chelsea had scored seven in a Premier League game, and Cole got on the scoresheet in the dying seconds to make it eight.

Second-placed Manchester United had needed Chelsea to slip up, as it did all it could, beating Stoke 4-0 at Old Trafford to at least close out the season in winning fashion. Darren Fletcher’s effort in the 31st minute put United ahead and Ryan Giggs struck seven minutes before the break to make it 2-0.

Danny Higginbotham scored an own goal nine minutes after the break to make it 3-0 and Park Ji-sung rounded off the scoring six minutes from time.

Chelsea’s captain John Terry told Sky Sports: “This is what I’ve worked so hard for. It’s about Chelsea Football Club and our day today. It’s been a hard three years not winning the Premier League, but we’ve done it today and we deserve it.

“It’s been inside of me for three years, seeing Man United lift it season after season and every single one of us has sat there and watched it. And now it’s their turn to sit there and watch us today.”

Coach Carlo Ancelotti told Sky Sports 1: “It’s fantastic, we did our best and I did my best for this club. There’s a fantastic atmosphere at this club with these supporters, and I think we deserved to win the championship after this season. We are very happy.

“There are a lot of things we’re happy about. We’re happy for this record, for Didier being the top scorer, but the most important thing is that we showed some good play.”

Arsenal beat Europa League finalist, Fulham, 4-0 to alleviate fears of surrendering third place to north London rival, Tottenham. Andrey Arshavin scored for Arsenal after 21 minutes and Robin van Persie added a second five minutes later, before Chris Baird’s own goal eight minutes from half-time made it three. Carlos Vela added a fourth in the 84th minute.

As it was, it mattered little, as Spurs threw away a two-goal lead to lose 2-4 at relegated Burnley. In-form Gareth Bale put Tottenham ahead after three minutes, with Luka Modric adding a second just after the half-hour mark. Wade Elliott pulled one back three minutes before the break to make it 2-1 and Jack Cork levelled in the 54th minute.

Martin Paterson then put Brian Laws’ side ahead nine minutes from the end and Steven Thompson added a fourth as they finished their season on a positive note. Sunderland finished with nine men as it slipped to a 1-2 defeat at Wolves. The Black Cats went ahead through Kenwyne Jones in the eighth minute but Kevin Doyle levelled from the spot two minutes later after Alan Hutton fouled Matt Jarvis.

Adlene Guedioura then completed the turnaround in the 78th minute before Michael Turner was dismissed after picking up his second booking in the 82nd minute. Jack Colback also saw red in stoppage time.

Manchester City drew 1-1 at West Ham, with Shaun Wright-Phillips equalising in the 21st minute after Luis Boa Morte had put the Hammers ahead against the run of play four minutes earlier.

Bolton beat Birmingham 2-1 thanks to Kevin Davies’ strike in the 33rd minute and Ivan Klasnic’s effort on the hour mark. James McFadden got a consolation for Birmingham 13 minutes from time.

An own goal from Richard Dunne in the 84th minute gave Blackburn a 1-0 win at Aston Villa, while Diniyar Bilyaletdinov scored in stoppage time to give Everton a 1-0 win over relegated FA Cup finalist, Portsmouth.

Liverpool’s disappointing season ended in suitable low-key fashion as it played out a goalless draw at relegated Hull. That meant that Liverpool finished the season seventh.

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