Ivanovic provides the dagger, Blues down Southampton

Updated: February 27, 2016

After going down 1-0 in the last few minutes before halftime, Chelsea fought back to grab a pleasant 2-1 win away to Southampton.

The Blues were dealt a massive blow in the seventh minute when Pedro had to be subbed off after going down with an apparent hamstring injury. Oscar replaced the Spaniard, taking over the central attacking midfield role with Eden Hazard on his right and Willian on his left.

Moments later, another scare for the Blues as Shane Long met a cross with Thibaut Courtois stuck in no man’s land, but the Republic of Ireland forward was unable to keep his header under the crossbar.

The Blues finally got it’s first chance in the 34th minute when Oscar low shot forced a save by Fraser Forster, though it never really gave the English international much trouble.

Shortly thereafter, Diego Costa blasted a shot over goal before Charlie Austin fizzled one wide of goal at the other end.

The Blues finally picked things up in the latter third of the half, but the hosts broke the deadlock in the 42nd minute.

Baba Rahman made a costly error as a ball from midfield was met with a header from a Southampton player, and directed towards the Blues’ back line. Rahman tried to head the ball to Ivanovic standing just yards from him, but Rahman didn’t realize Long rushing towards him. Rahman’s header was intercepted by Long, who took a touch and slid it past the on-rushing Courtois.

With a 1-0 deficit at halftime, Rahman’s mistake proved even more costly for the Ghanian as Guus Hiddink replaced him with Kenedy at halftime. The Brazilian slotted in at left back for the second half and was very solid.

The visitors came out firing from the start of the second half, and Southampton was happy to place nine men behind the ball and counter.

John Obi Mikel nearly drew even in the 52nd minute after a Willian corner towards the back post was kept alive by Gary Cahill. The ball met Mikel’s head from inside the six-yard box, but Mikel’s header sailed wide of goal.

Costa kicked his game to a higher gear in the second half, and nearly bagged a goal near the hour mark when his volley from a Hazard cross was shot well wide of the mark.

The striker was later booked for his challenge on Virgil van Dijk before facing an aerial challenge from Ryan Bertrand that also saw the former Chelsea man be given a booking.

Chelsea finally found the equalizer in the 75th minute when Costa got in behind before taking the ball back out wide from the byline. Costa found Cesc Fabregas trailing, who curled a ball towards the far post. The service froze Forster as he couldn’t decide if Hazard or one of his defenders would get a touch on it, and Fabregas’ ball found the far corner.

It was the first time the Saints had conceded since their January 9 F.A. Cup match against Crystal Palace, and first Premier League goal against since it’s 1-0 loss to Norwich on January 2.

The Blues put the pedal to the metal, desperate to find a winner, and got just that in the 89th minute after the Blues received a corner kick. Willian’s service into the box was met by a bullet header from Ivanovic.

With four minutes of stoppage time added on, Hazard made way for Nemanja Matic, who was able to come in and help the Blues see out it’s 2-1 victory.

Chelsea now sit in 11th place with nine wins, nine draws and nine losses, and are only five points back of fifth-place Manchester United – though United have a game in hand as of writing this.

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