Chelsea thrash Leicester 4-0

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> Chelsea closed the gap on Arsenal and Manchester United in the English Premier League on Sunday after cruising to a four-nil win at Leicester City.

Updated: February 25, 2007 10:05 IST
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Struggling Leicester City welcomed Chelsea to the Walkers Stadium in the English Premier League on Sunday. Claudio Ranieri's side stuttered over the Christmas period, losing ground on both Manchester United and Arsenal after a highly impressive start to the season. But they dominated from the first whistle on Sunday, and it was no surprise when they took the lead in the 11th minute. Joe Cole's low cross was turned in deftly at the near post by Jimmy Floyd Hassel baink for his 11th goal of the season. Leicester were being outclassed, and Chelsea's second came on the stroke of half-time. Somewhat fortuitously, it must be said, though it was no less than their possession deserved. Hasselbaink's free-kick struck Nikos Dabizas and flew into the opposite corner of the net, leaving Ian Walker helpless. To their credit, the home side came out fighting in the second half. Carlo Cudicini produced a superb fingertip save to touch a swerving effort from Callum Davidson over the bar in the 74th minute. Their efforts counted for nothing, however, as Chelsea scored twice more late on to seal an emphatic victory. In the 88th minute, substitute Adrian Mutu curled in a fine effort from 25 yards (23 metres) to make it three-nil, the Romanian ending his 13-game goal drought in style. And then, in the dying seconds, Celestine Babayaro pounced on a poor back pass by Paul Brooker to make it four-nil. An emphatic response from Chelsea after their recent slump but for Leicester, meanwhile, the relegation struggle continues. (AP)

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