Chelsea on brink of Champions League promised land after Victor Moses' intervention

Substitute secures late victory over stubborn Shakhtar but Terry is unhappy after being left on the bench

Stamford Bridge

Victor Moses' stoppage-time winner rescued Chelsea's Champions League campaign last night. The substitute's 94th-minute header gave Chelsea a 3-2 win over Shakhtar Donetsk to leave them on the verge of qualification.

The manager, Di Matteo admitted it was a "crucial" victory but his difficulties were not limited to the pitch as he revealed it was "not easy" to tell captain John Terry he was not fit enough to play.

Chelsea are second in Group E, joint Shakhtar on seven points and one point ahead of third-placed Juventus. Had Chelsea drawn last night, as they looked set to do before Moses' goal with the last action of the match, then they would have needed to avoid defeat in Turin on 20 November to stay in the competition.

"It was crucial for us to win the game," Di Matteo said. "We knew we needed to score a goal from that set-play at the end, and we did. We knew it was a must-win game. We didn't want to expose ourselves too much, but we did have to towards the end to win it."

 

Get Adobe Flash player

Chelsea are likely to need four points from their final two games, the second of which is Nordsjaelland at home, to reach the round of 16. As long as they draw in Turin, qualification will be in their hands.

"It's not going to make things easier, but it's going to give us a good chance to qualify," Di Matteo said. "It'll probably go down to the last game, and the last kick of that as well."

Chelsea played without Terry, available but left on the bench, and Di Matteo said: "I'm very happy that he's back available for us after the ban.

"But considering the last four weeks in his professional life, he's had one competitive game, and I thought we needed players who were 100 per cent match fit for a game like this. I'm not going to comment on the private conversation with my players, but it's not easy to tell a player that he's not starting the game."

Di Matteo admitted there was an element of fortune. Shakhtar were the better team for most of the evening, conceding three goals from their own defensive errors. "In terms of the timing of the winning goal, you probably could agree that there was an element of luck," Di Matteo said. "It was basically the last kick of the game."

Sport
The Aviva Premiership trophy
rugby unionLive: All the latest from Twickenham for the Premiership final against Bath
Life and Style
tech
Sport
Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood
footballDanny Higginbotham: Tim Sherwood must play game of two halves to cause major upset
News
Caber is trained to help child victims of serious crimes testify
news
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Fifa corruption: The 161-page dossier that exposes the organisation's dark heart

The 161-page dossier that exposes Fifa's dark heart

How did a group of corrupt officials turn football’s governing body into what was, in essence, a criminal enterprise? Chris Green and David Connett reveal all
Mediterranean migrant crisis: 'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves,' says Tripoli PM

Exclusive interview with Tripoli PM Khalifa al-Ghweil

'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves'
Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles: How the author foretold the Californian water crisis

Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles

How the author foretold the Californian water crisis
Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison as authorities crackdown on dissent in the arts

Art attack

Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison
Marc Jacobs is putting Cher in the limelight as the face of his latest campaign

Cher is the new face of Marc Jacobs

Alexander Fury explains why designers are turning to august stars to front their lines
Parents of six-year-old who beat leukaemia plan to climb Ben Nevis for cancer charity

'I'm climbing Ben Nevis for my daughter'

Karen Attwood's young daughter Yasmin beat cancer. Now her family is about to take on a new challenge - scaling Ben Nevis to help other children
10 best wedding gift ideas

It's that time of year again... 10 best wedding gift ideas

Forget that fancy toaster, we've gone off-list to find memorable gifts that will last a lifetime
Paul Scholes column: With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards

Paul Scholes column

With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards
Heysel disaster 30th anniversary: Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget fateful day in Belgium

Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget Heysel

Thirty years ago, 39 fans waiting to watch a European Cup final died as a result of a fatal cocktail of circumstances. Ian Herbert looks at how a club dealt with this tragedy
Amir Khan vs Chris Algieri: Khan’s audition for Floyd Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation, says Frank Warren

Khan’s audition for Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation

The Bolton fighter could be damned if he dazzles and damned if he doesn’t against Algieri, the man last seen being decked six times by Pacquiao, says Frank Warren
Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

Fifa corruption arrests

All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

How Stephen Mangan got his range

Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor