Lampard brings Hull back down to earth

Hull City 0 Chelsea 3

This was the match in which Hull's dream start might have stretched the limits of imagination again with a scalp maybe to eclipse even that of Arsenal at the Emirates but Chelsea were in no mood to be part of anyone's fantasies, even those of a record Premier League crowd of almost 25,000 at the KC Stadium.

Goals by Frank Lampard, Nicolas Anelka and Florent Malouda gave Luiz Felipe Scolari's side an emphatic victory but had the scoreline been double or more in Chelsea's favour they would not have been flattered. Phil Brown's team deserve all the respect they have gathered so far in winning six of their opening 10 matches – as many as Chelsea at the game's start – but for all that Hull remain fifth in the table, the gulf between these sides last night was as wide as the Humber.

Their finishing apart, Chelsea played with a quality befitting of their status, with Lampard supreme at the heart of it, drawing superlative praise from Scolari afterwards, both for the speed of thought behind his goal and for the dynamism of his play throughout. "He is the best goalscoring midfield player in Europe, one of the best in the world, and I don't think there is another player who could score a goal like that," Scolari said. "He is so intelligent a player and he seems to be never tired. If he is a contender for world player of the year he gets my vote."

The goal that so excited his manager came less than three minutes into the game. There were mistakes made by the home side but it was Lampard's ability, in a split second, to weigh up an opportunity, make a decision and execute it flawlessly that made the goal, the England player's 99th in his league career, so special.

If there was an obvious culprit it was Boaz Myhill, the Hull goalkeeper, who was just too far ahead of his line to be ready for what was coming.

But then Hull, in general, seemed unprepared for their lines to be pressed so soon by swarming blue shirts and when right-back Paul McShane tackled Malouda but could not get the ball away, it was a good bet that it would run to an opponent. Lampard, ready for a return pass at the edge of the penalty area, assessed the possibilities in an instant and delivered the perfect chip beyond Myhill's reach.

It could have been the cue for the ruthless restating of intent that Chelsea wanted after the shock of losing their long unbeaten home run at Liverpool's hands at the weekend. By half-time, however, two good chances each had fallen to Malouda and Anelka and another to the returning Joe Cole, but none was taken.

Myhill redeemed himself with a fine fingertip save from one Anelka shot but Chelsea were not being decisive enough to make Hull pay.

So Hull reached the break with a chance still that they might find some way in the second 45 minutes to add another thrilling episode to their story, encouraged moreover by creating some opportunities of their own, notably when Daniel Cousin hit an upright with the fluorescently clad Petr Cech beaten, and when Geovanni had the Chelsea goalkeeper scrambling to deal with two long-range free kicks.

But to find a way back though, Hull needed first to make no further mistakes and it was in pursuit of that target that they failed miserably five minutes after the restart as Chelsea at last seized control, courtesy of a genuine gift goal. This time blame attached itself to McShane and centre-back Kamil Zayatte, who stood back in the belief that a hopeful punt out of the Chelsea half would carry through to Hull's goalkeeper only to look on in horror as it pulled up short, allowing Anelka to nip in as Myhill stumbled into the "D" and take the ball wide before rolling it into the unguarded net.

Malouda missed another chance but did score Chelsea's third 15 minutes from the end, sidefooting home from close range after Ricardo Carvalho, popping up on the left flank, supplied the pass to finish another Chelsea move of crisp passing and clever improvisation.

Only an injury late on to Carvalho, and more worries over Joe Cole, marred Chelsea's night.

Goals: Lampard (3) 0-1; Anelka (50) 0-2; Malouda (75) 0-3.

Hull City (4-1-3-2): Myhill; McShane, Turner, Zayatte, Dawson; Marney (Garcia, 71); Geovanni, Ashbee, Boateng (Halmosi, 62); King (Windass, 83), Cousin. Substitutes not used: Duke (gk), Hughes, Mendy, Ricketts.

Chelsea (4-1-4-1): Cech; Bosingwa (Ivanovic, 86), Carvalho, Terry, A Cole; Mikel; J Cole (Belletti, 53), Lampard, Malouda; Deco (Kalou, 78); Anelka. Substitutes not used: Cudicini (gk), Di Santo, Bridge, Alex.

Referee: A Marriner (West Midlands).

Booked: Chelsea J Cole; Deco.

Man of the match: Lampard.

Attendance: 24,906.

Arts and Entertainment
TVShow's twee, safe facade smashed by ice cream melting scandal
News
newsVideo for No campaign was meant to get women voting
Sport
Wayne Rooney talks to the media during a press conference
sport
Arts and Entertainment
tv
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Alexis Sanchez celebrates after scoring his first goal for Arsenal in the Champions League qualifier against Besiktas
sportChilean's first goal for the club secures place in draw for Champions League group stages
News
i100
News
Down time: an employee of Google uses the slide to get to the canteen
scienceBosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder
Arts and Entertainment
Amis: 'The racial situation in the US is as bad as it’s been since the Civil War'
booksAuthor says he might come back across Atlantic after all
Extras
indybest
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Day In a Page

Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone
Amazon is buying Twitch for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?

What is the appeal of Twitch?

Amazon is buying the video-game-themed online streaming site for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?
Tip-tapping typewriters, ripe pongs and slides in the office: Bosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder

How bosses are making us work harder

As it is revealed that one newspaper office pumps out the sound of typewriters to increase productivity, Gillian Orr explores the other devices designed to motivate staff
Manufacturers are struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl records

Hard pressed: Resurgence in vinyl records

As the resurgence in vinyl records continues, manufacturers and their outdated machinery are struggling to keep up with the demand
Tony Jordan: 'I turned down the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series nine times ... then I found a kindred spirit'

A tale of two writers

Offered the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series, Tony Jordan turned it down. Nine times. The man behind EastEnders and Life on Mars didn’t feel right for the job. Finally, he gave in - and found an unexpected kindred spirit
Could a later start to the school day be the most useful educational reform of all?

Should pupils get a lie in?

Doctors want a later start to the school day so that pupils can sleep later. Not because teenagers are lazy, explains Simon Usborne - it's all down to their circadian rhythms
Prepare for Jewish jokes – as Jewish comedians get their own festival

Prepare for Jewish jokes...

... as Jewish comedians get their own festival
SJ Watson: 'I still can't quite believe that Before I Go to Sleep started in my head'

A dream come true for SJ Watson

Watson was working part time in the NHS when his debut novel, Before I Go to Sleep, became a bestseller. Now it's a Hollywood movie, too. Here he recalls the whirlwind journey from children’s ward to A-list film set
10 best cycling bags for commuters

10 best cycling bags for commuters

Gear up for next week’s National Cycle to Work day with one of these practical backpacks and messenger bags
Paul Scholes: Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United

Paul Scholes column

Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United
Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

The science of herding is cracked

Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

This tyrant doesn’t rule

It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?