x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Premier League: Chelsea 4 Wigan Athletic 1

It is a result which is likely to at least delay Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, who is not renowned for his patience, reaching for the trigger.

Chelsea's Frank Lampard celebrates with teammates Eden Hazard, Juan Mata and Cesar Azpilicueta. Carl Court / AFP
Chelsea's Frank Lampard celebrates with teammates Eden Hazard, Juan Mata and Cesar Azpilicueta. Carl Court / AFP

LONDON // Rafael Benitez expressed delight after Frank Lampard scored his 198th Chelsea goal in a 4-1 victory over Wigan Athletic to end a four-match winless run and ease the pressure on the interim manager.

Ramires and Eden Hazard gave the Blues a 2-0 lead which Shaun Maloney halved after 58 minutes, before Lampard's 86th-minute strike saw him move to within four of Bobby Tambling's club goalscoring record of 202.

Substitute Marko Marin added a stoppage-time fourth as Chelsea, who had won just three of their previous 10 games, triumphed for the first time since the defeat of Arsenal.

"We deserved to win," Benitez said. "To win is something you have to do. Top sides, if you want to win something, you have to be consistent winning. It's normal. But it's not the end of the world if you draw a game you deserve to win.

"The problem for me would be if we don't create chances; we create chances every game. We score goals. We're making some mistakes, but we have a lot of positives. Today four goals could be six goals at the end."

It is a result which is likely to at least delay Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, who is not renowned for his patience, reaching for the trigger.

Benitez was unfazed. "It was just speculation," he said. "Nobody is in contact with the owner to find out if he says this or that.

"It is my job: try to win every game. That's it, so I have to concentrate on that."

Chelsea again were reliant on Lampard, who scored the decisive goal for England against Brazil in midweek.

The future of the 34 year old is unclear, with contradictory speculation in midweek over whether the midfielder will be offered an new contract to extend his 12-year stay at Stamford Bridge beyond this summer.

There was a moment of alarm when, with Chelsea leading 2-1, the visitors had a penalty appeal declined after Ronnie Stam's shot struck Ashley Cole on the arm.

Wigan manager Roberto Martinez said officials should be given further guidance for such incidents.

"The referees need a bit of clarity," Martinez said. "I tell my defenders not to put themselves in a position where it could be a penalty.

"The defender should have had his arm 'attached' to his body. Clearly the arm wasn't. But it's down to the interpretation of the referee. It's a difficult call."

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