Match Highlights: Chelsea Vs Schalke 1-1 ALL Goals Video 2014 Chelsea were held to a 1-1 draw by Schalke in Group G as Jose Mourinho’s men were unable to carry their peerless Premier League performances into the Champions League.
The Blues twice beat Schalke 3-0 last season and were strengthened over the summer, while the Germans were severely depleted by injury and reeling from their worst Bundesliga start in more than 40 years.
Cesc Fabregas, one of the summer acquisitions, scored his first Chelsea goal after 11 minutes, despite appearing to foul Max Meyer in the build-up.
Eden Hazard was the provider as part of a sensational individual start, as he set about justifying his imminent new contract and his manager’s belief that he can be one of the greats of his generation.
It appeared Chelsea would inflict a heavy loss on their opponents, but Mourinho turned away in disbelief after Fabregas blazed over with the goal gaping and the Blues were warned of Schalke’s danger when Julian Draxler came close to an equaliser before the interval.
Didier Drogba, playing in the competition for Chelsea for the first time since his penalty secured the 2012 European Cup, was determined to make a mark but failed to convert from passes by Willian and Hazard.
The misses were punished when Klaas Jan Huntelaar struck on the counter-attack after seemingly fouling Fabregas to win possession in the build-up.
Substitute Loic Remy had a shot cleared off the line before Ralf Fahrmann made a brilliant reflex save to deny Hazard and Chelsea.
Drogba, one of four changes, featured at Stamford Bridge for Galatasaray last term, but now was back in Chelsea blue.
Ramires, included alongside Drogba, Filipe Luis and Willian, shot weakly after fine work from Hazard on the left and then Drogba on the right.
Chelsea took the lead when Meyer delayed on the ball and was tackled by Fabregas in a challenge which appeared late.
Hazard, who had begun the game with some scintillating runs, took the ball on before feeding Fabregas, who slotted the ball through Fahrmann’s despairing dive.
The former Arsenal captain celebrated by patting the Chelsea crest on his chest, while Huntelaar was booked for his protestations over the challenge on Meyer.
And if the Dutchman had a point, Chelsea and Hazard, in particular, were not about to show any sympathy.
Hazard had a shot blocked by Kaan Ayhan and continued to terrorise Schalke’s rearguard, without captain Benedikt Howedes, who was ruled out with a hip injury on the eve of the contest.
Schalke had fleeting forays forward which amounted to little and Thibaut Courtois, a Champions League finalist last term and first-choice ahead of Petr Cech this season, was little more than a spectator.
Chelsea had numerous opportunities to add to their advantage.
Drogba headed straight at Fahrmann from Luis’ cross, Branislav Ivanovic got forward to meet another Luis centre, but was offside.Follow @Football7x24