London, Oct 23 (IANS) Mason Mount scored his first hat-trick for Chelsea as the Champions League winners hammered Norwich City 7-0 in a Premier League match at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.
A relentless performance from the Blues blew their opponents away in west London, as an on-fire Chelsea took just seven minutes to take the lead through Mount, who blasted into the bottom corner from just outside the box.
That was soon followed by a calm finish from Callum Hudson-Odoi, who one-on-one with goalkeeper Tim Krul after a brilliant through-ball by Mateo Kovacic, the first of three assists for the Croatian. Reece James then lifted a clever finish over Krul to make it 3-0 before half-time.
If anything, Chelsea were even stronger in the second session, as Ben Chilwell continued his brilliant run of form by scoring on his fourth consecutive Premier League appearance, and a combination of Max Aarons deflection and Krul fumble added an own goal to the Londoners’ tally.
To compound their problems, Norwich defender Ben Gibson was sent off for his second booking of the day. With the visitors reduced to 10-men, Mount struck two more goals, the first from a retaken penalty after Krul saved his first effort but had advanced off his line. Mount made sure he would be taking the matchball home in injury time when he tapped in Ruben Loftus-Cheek’s selfless square pass.
Having come into this match without a goal to his name this season and never having scored more than once in a match for the Blues, Mount ended the day with his first Chelsea hat-trick.
Chelsea started the match confidently as Thomas Tuchel made five outfield changes to the team that played the Champions League match against Malmo, with Jorginho taking the captain’s armband.
Edouard Mendy continued between the posts but there was one change to the back three that had played in front of him against Malmo in midweek, with Trevoh Chalobah, who started their last Premier League fixutre at Brentford, returning to the side in place of Andreas Christensen. Thiago Silva and Antonio Rudiger continued alongside him.
In midfield, Mateo Kovacic replaced N’Golo Kante to ‘artner Saturday’s skipper Jorginho, as Cesar Azpilicueta made way for Reece James on the right. Ben Chilwell retained his place on the opposite flank after scoring on his last three Premier League appearances.
With Romelu Lukaku and Timo Werner both picking up injuries against Malmo, there was a new-look forward line for the Blues, with Kai Havertz and Callum Hudson-Odoi, who combined for their third goal on Wednesday evening, coming into the team alongside Mason Mount.
Norwich were unchanged from the starting XI that drew 0-0 with Brighton at home in their previous Premier League match last week. Billy Gilmour was ineligible to play for the Canaries as he is on loan from Chelsea.