Chelsea’s knack for ending long sequences of successful results by our opponents continued on Tuesday when we halted Borussia Dortmund’s perfect start to 2023 and eliminated them from the Champions League.
Prior to their visit to Stamford Bridge, the German side had reeled off 10 straight wins to start the calendar year, including a run of eight consecutive in the Bundesliga which put them level on points with Bayern Munich at the top of the table.
However their excellent streak came to a screeching halt in west London as goals by Raheem Sterling and Kai Havertz secured a 2-1 aggregate victory for the Blues, securing our place in the quarter-finals of Europe’s premier club competition for the third straight year.
It is just the latest streak-busting triumph for the Blues who have made a regular habit of playing the spoiler when we facing teams on long winning or unbeaten runs.
Salzburg – October 2022
Salzburg had not lost for 40 home games since February 2021 and were unbeaten in this season’s Champions League when we visited the Red Bull Arena for our penultimate Group E match last October. Unfortunately for the Austrian champions, Havertz’s fine finish midway through the second half sealed a 2-1 away win for the Blues as we ended their proud record and secured our first-place finish in the group with one game to spare.
Manchester City – May 2021
Manchester City were favourites to win the Champions League in 2021 after they won 11 and drew one of their 12 games on the road to the final in Porto, scoring 25 goals and conceding only four along the way. But after we had eliminated them in the FA Cup semi-finals and delayed their coronation as Premier League champions by winning 2-1 at the Etihad, Chelsea played spoilers once more as Havertz’s lone strike saw us crowned champions of Europe for a second time.
Tottenham Hotspur – November 2016
Tottenham were the only unbeaten team in the Premier League in 2016/17 after 12 games and they appeared to be in a good position to extend their unbeaten run and secure a first victory at Stamford Bridge for 16 years when Christian Eriksen fired them ahead early on. However, a stunner by Pedro levelled the score just before half-time and Victor Moses put us ahead after the interval as we won 2-1 and moved back to the top of the table.
Liverpool – April 2014
Liverpool were on the cusp of claiming their first league title since 1990 when they welcomed us to Anfield for their third-from-last game of 2013/14. They were on a run of 11 straight wins and 16 unbeaten league matches.. However, the Blues stunned the Reds with Demba Ba taking advantage of a Steven Gerrard mistake to break the deadlock before Willian added a second in stoppage time to inflict a damaging 2-0 defeat which opened the door for Man City to pip the Merseysiders to the title.
Barcelona – April 2012
Barcelona were favourites to retain the Champions League title in 2012 when they arrived at Stamford Bridge for the semi-finals on a 16-match unbeaten run in the competition. However, a Didier Drogba goal gave us a 1-0 edge in the first leg before we came from behind to draw 2-2 at the Camp Nou two weeks later to advance to the final in Munich.