Wolves 2 Chelsea 1: Jimenez and Jota complete stunning fightback

Chelsea took the lead at Wolves but fell to a 2-1 defeat after two goals in four second-half minutes at Molineux on Wednesday.

Wolves' Diogo Jota celebrates scoring against Chelsea in the Premier League on Wednesday.   -  Getty Images

Wolves produced a stunning second-half turnaround as two quickfire goals earned a shock 2-1 victory over Chelsea to end a six-match winless run in the Premier League.

Ruben Loftus-Cheek, handed his first league start of the campaign, had put the Blues ahead in the 18th minute with a heavily deflected effort - his second goal in four days after netting in Sunday's 2-0 win over Fulham.


And it looked as though his contribution could prove decisive until the host struck twice in four minutes at a raucous Molineux.

Raul Jimenez brought the scores level, his rasping finish from a narrow angle proving too hot for Kepa Arrizabalaga and the comeback was complete when Matt Doherty's low cross to the far post found Diogo Jota unmarked to tap home.

The fightback consigned Chelsea to successive Premier League away defeats and left Maurizio Sarri with much to ponder ahead of welcoming leader Manchester City to Stamford Bridge on Saturday.

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Eden Hazard, without a goal in two months, saw a pair of half-chances come and go in the opening seven minutes but the Blues did not have to wait long for a breakthrough.

It arrived with a healthy slice of fortune, however, as Loftus-Cheek's effort looked to be heading straight for Rui Patricio before Conor Coady's unwitting intervention with his head wrong-footed his goalkeeper.

Patricio superbly tipped Willian's free-kick over as Chelsea sought a swift second, although Cesc Fabregas had to throw himself into a desperate block to thwart Morgan Gibbs-White at the other end.

Ryan Bennett and Willy Boly produced similarly heroic last-ditch challenges to deny Willian and Alvaro Morata either side of the break, and those interventions took on added importance as Wolves struck twice in quick succession around the hour through Jimenez and Jota.

Chelsea fought to find a way back, Hazard and Fabregas firing over in the closing stages, but Nuno Espirito Santo's men held on to claim a famous win and snap a worrying sequence that delivered just one point from six matches.

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What does it mean? Chelsea out of the title race already

With only 15 matches gone, the Blues are 10 points behind City - a gap that could be extended at the weekend. Sarri has repeatedly distanced his side from title talk and it is hard to disagree.

Hazard drought goes on

There was talk earlier in the season of the Belgium superstar netting 40 goals in 2018-19. Hazard continued to look dangerous, fizzing a shot narrowly over late on, but he has not found the net since October 7.

Gibbs-White shows no fear

On his first Premier League start, the 18-year-old showed admirable composure and played a key hand in the equaliser - shrugging off N'Golo Kante before feeding Jimenez.

Key Opta facts:

- Wolves has defeated ‘Big 6’ opposition in the Premier League for the first time since February 2011 against Manchester United (2-1) – it was winless in its previous 18 such games.
- Chelsea has lost consecutive away games against newly promoted sides for the first time since December 1999 (vs Watford and Sunderland).
- Each of Wolves’ last nine league goals at Molineux have been scored in the second half.
- Wolves’ Morgan Gibbs-White (18 years and 312 days) became the youngest player to assist a Premier League goal against Chelsea since Francis Jeffers for Everton in November 1999 (18 years and 298 days).
- Chelsea’s Ruben Loftus-Cheek has scored three goals in his last three Premier League games, as many as in his previous 48 combined in the competition.
- Diogo Jota ended a run of 15 league games without a goal for Wolves, last netting against Bolton in the Championship in April.


What's next?

A huge test lies in wait for Chelsea as defending champion City comes to west London. Wolves, meanwhile, visits Newcastle United on Sunday with a newly found spring in its step.

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