Chelsea maintains EPL title charge beating Bournemouth 3-1

Antonio Conte in new disagreement with Chelsea's board over staff change

Chelsea on Saturday evening consolidated their lead at the top of the Premier League table with a 3-1 win over Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium and restored a seven-point gap over Tottenham Hotspur, reports.

Antonio Conte's men went ahead after 17 minutes when Bournemouth's Adam Smith deflected in Diego Costa's shot and Eden Hazard made it 2-0 within a minute.

Bournemouth's luck turned just before the break when Josh King's powerful effort from the edge of the box flew into the top corner via a deflection from David Luiz, leaving Thibaut Courtois with no chance.

Tottenham will have the chance to close to within four points of the Premier League leaders before they kick off against Bournemouth, but Conte feels Spurs' result will have little impact on what is set to be a hard game for his side.

"It's not easy when you arrive and in front of you there are five really good central defenders".

While Chelsea kept pressing for another goal - Moses just heading wide in the 38th minute - the hosts did pull a goal back with three minutes of normal time to play. As a result, City were denied the space to play the threatening low crosses across the face of goal that has resulted in so many goals for Pep Guardiola's side this season.

The Cherries showed attacking intent early in the second half as they went in search of an equaliser, but a show-stealing free kick from Alonso in the 68th minute killed off their resistance.

This is one step closer to the title.

Antonio Conte's men now lead Spurs by seven points in the Premiership standings.

And his fifth goal, which came during Saturday afternoon's 3-1 win over Bournemouth, was an example of how to take the flawless free kick.

It was the wing-back who stepped up and curled a brilliant free-kick over the wall and into the top corner with Boruc only able to watch it on its way through.

After the two goals he scored against Manchester City, Hazard, at least, continues to rise to the challenge of the run-in.

"Honestly it's disappointing when, in the end, you find yourself thrown on the front page with people talking about you", he told Sky Sport Italia.

Chelsea haven't kept a clean sheet in nine league games.

Chelsea: Courtois; Azpilicueta, Luiz, Cahill; Pedro, Kante, Matic, Alonso; Willian, Costa, Hazard.

Subs used: Fabregas (5), Willian (n/a), Zouma (n/a).

Hazard insisted Chelsea did enough to collect a third straight win away from home in the league, although they came under pressure at times from Eddie Howe's side.


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