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Barclays Premier League

Stamford Bridge (ATT 41,592) 11th February 2015 - Kick off 19:45

Chelsea Chelsea vs Everton Everton

Chelsea 1

Willian (89)

ft

Everton 0

G Barry (S/O 88)

Premier League: Chelsea maintain seven-point lead after 1-0 win over Everton but Branislav Ivanovic escapes punishment in melee

Last Updated: 12/02/15 8:19am

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Willian (L): Scored winner in 89th minute to maintain Chelsea's lead

Willian (L): Scored winner in 89th minute to maintain Chelsea's lead

Chelsea maintained their seven-point lead at the top of the Premier League with a last-gasp 1-0 win over Everton in a tempestuous clash at Stamford Bridge.

Willian broke the deadlock in the 89th minute when his smart volley from outside the penalty area deflected off Steven Naismith and sneaked past Tim Howard.

The match-winning goal came moments after Gareth Barry was sent off for a second yellow card - but in the same melee, Branislav Ivanovic avoided any sanction for an apparent attempted headbutt on James McCarthy.

Chelsea were repeatedly denied by Howard on his first appearance since picking up a calf injury on Boxing Day, but looked to have taken the lead in the second half when Nemanja Matic fired into the net from the edge of the box.

The goal was disallowed, however, after the ball bounced off Ivanovic on its way past the Everton goalkeeper and the assistant referee flagged for offside.

Everton also had chances to take the lead after the break. Romelu Lukaku connected with Bryan Oviedo’s fizzing cross from close range but Petr Cech was quick to react, saving with his feet to keep the score level.

Chelsea could have opened the scoring in the first half. Matic and Willian fired early efforts over the bar from the edge of the penalty area, before Lukaku hit back for Everton with a low drive straight at Cech.

Chelsea continued to press before the break and Eden Hazard narrowly failed to connect with Cesar Azpilicueta’s floated cross.

The Belgian then hit a powerful strike that Howard gathered at the second attempt, with Lukaku following his compatriot’s lead and testing Cech again from distance.

Everton sent on Kevin Mirallas in the closing stages and the winger immediately fired over from distance.

It was Chelsea who eventually found the breakthrough, though, with Willian beating Howard at the death to maintain the hosts' seven-point lead at the top of the table.

Player ratings

Chelsea: Cech (8), Ivanovic (7), Zouma (6), Terry (6), Azpilicueta (7), Ramires (7), Matic (8), Cuadrado (7), Willian (8), Hazard (8), Remy (7). 

Used subs: Drogba (6), Fabregas (7), Cahill (5).

Everton: Howard (8), Coleman (7), Stones (7), Jagielka (6), Oviedo (6), Besic (7), Barry (5), Lennon (5), Naismith (6), Barkley (6), Lukaku (7). 

Used subs: McCarthy (6), Mirallas (6), Gibson (6).

Man of the match: Tim Howard

See all the Premier League goals on SSNHQ from midnight - or from 6am on Good Morning Sports Fans.

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Matches

Table

Barclays Premier League

Barclays Premier League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Chelsea 33 77
2 Manchester City 34 67
3 Arsenal 33 67
4 Manchester United 34 65
5 Liverpool 33 58
6 Tottenham Hotspur 34 58
7 Southampton 34 57
8 Swansea City 34 50
9 Stoke City 34 47
10 Everton 34 44
11 West Ham United 34 44
12 Crystal Palace 34 42
13 West Bromwich Albion 34 37
14 Newcastle United 34 35
15 Aston Villa 34 32
16 Hull City 33 31
17 Leicester City 33 31
18 Sunderland 33 30
19 Queens Park Rangers 34 27
20 Burnley 34 26

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