David Luiz of Chelsea celebrates as he scores their first goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Manchester City (Photo by Scott Heavey/Getty Images)

Chelsea Vs. Bayer Leverkusen, 2011 UEFA Champions League: Blues Win 2-0

David Luiz and Juan Mata capped off their brilliant performances with goals, guiding Chelsea to a 2-0 win over Bayer Leverkusen

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Chelsea Vs. Bayer Leverkusen, 2011 UEFA Champions League: Full Time, David Luiz, Juan Mata Fire Blues To Win

It wasn't easy, but Chelsea put together a solid performance at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday night, grabbing a hard earned 2-0 victory over Bayer Leverkusen. The Blues now have control of Group E in the UEFA Champions League, and have already put themselves in pole position to clinch a place in the knockout stages over the next five games.

David Luiz and Juan Mata were the scorers, and both were absolutely brilliant outside of their goals. Luiz continues to grow his reputation as the best attacking defender in the world, while Mata continues to look like an absolutely brilliant buy for Andre Villas-Boas.

The first half ended scoreless, but Chelsea were the slightly better team. Both sides had a goal disallowed in the opening five minutes, and both calls were slightly controversial. However, upon examination of replays it appears that the officials probably got both calls exactly right. The match settled down a bit after that, though Chelsea were in control. Fernando Torres and Florent Malouda both had bad misses in front of goal in the first half, while Daniel Sturridge had an effort brilliantly saved by Bernd Leno.

The 19-year-old Leno, on loan from Stuttgart because of Rene Adler's injury, was stellar on the night and looks like a real star in the making in goal. Neither of Chelsea's goals were his fault, and the Blues could have easily had five goals against an average goalkeeper. Leno's early save against Sturridge and brilliant second half stops against Sturridge again, as well as Mata, were absolutely world class.

Luiz's goal came in the 66th minute, and it was a brilliant combination move by the Blues. Surging forward from the center of defense, Luiz played a ball down the left for Mata and continued his run into the box. Mata passed to Torres, who laid off a ball for Luiz. The Brazilian international center back hit a great finish to the far post that Leno had no chance to stop.

Nicolas Anelka scored a goal after coming on as a substitute, just before the start of stoppage time, but it was bizarrely disallowed for offside. No Chelsea player appeared to be within two feet of being offside when the flag went up.

Chelsea would seal the deal with a second goal eventually, though, tapped in by Mata on a Torres assist. While Torres was poor for much of the game and is still experiencing a serious scoring drought, his two assists were impressive and might be a sign of life for the Spaniard.

The Blues are now in control in Champions League, but their lives don't get any easier going forward. They face off against Manchester United this weekend.

For more on Chelsea FC and this match, head over to SB Nation's Chelsea blog We Ain't Got No History. Check out our Chelsea vs. Bayer Leverkusen StoryStream for all of the previous updates from earlier in the match. Head over to SB Nation Soccer for news and updates on all of the UEFA Champions League action. 

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Chelsea Vs. Bayer Leverkusen, 2011 UEFA Champions League: David Luiz Goal Has Blues Ahead

Bayer Leverkusen Bernd Leno has been absolutely fantastic in net tonight, but there was no stopping this one. After 66 minutes of scoreless play, Chelsea now lead their visitors 1-0, thanks to a fantastic goal by David Luiz, scored on a surging run forward from open play.

See, David Luiz is a central defender in squad listing only. He is not confined by our rigid human definitions of association football positions. Sensing an opportunity to get forward, the Brazilian international ran up the pitch with the ball, over the halfway line and through a couple of Bayer defenders. He laid the ball off wide left to Juan Mata, then continued his run. Mata played a pass to Fernando Torres, who touched it back to Luiz quickly. From 15 yards out, Luiz placed a brilliant shot into the back of the net at the far post, giving Leno little chance to make a save.

Torres has been poor throughout the match, but his assist to Luiz was a glimpse into the quality that he has. It wasn't a goal, but it was proof that he might still have his old quality in him. But, let's not take anything away from David Luiz. The run and finish were something to behold.

For more on Chelsea FC and this match, head over to SB Nation's Chelsea blog We Ain't Got No History. Keep it on our Chelsea vs. Bayer Leverkusen StoryStream for updates throughout the match. Check out SB Nation Soccer for news and updates on all of the UEFA Champions League action. 

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Chelsea Vs. Bayer Leverkusen, 2011 UEFA Champions League: Halftime, Score Tied 0-0

Chelsea and Bayer Leverkusen are playing a fantastically entertaining match in every aspect of the game, but neither has been able to score a goal that counted. At halftime of their opening UEFA Champions League group stage match, the two clubs are tied up at 0-0, despite creating a good number of chances.

Both teams appeared to score in the opening five minutes of the game, but both had goals disallowed. Bayer Leverkusen's disallowed goal came on a corner kick and was disallowed for a foul in the box, a call that seemed slightly suspect but likely justifiable. The call on Chelsea's disallowed goal was absolutely correct, with Raul Meireles getting caught for offside.

The match settled down at that point, with Chelsea looking like the slightly superior side. There have been some spectacular individual battles so far, with Meireles battling Lars Bender in the middle while Andreas Schürrle and Ashley Cole battle on the flank.

Fernando Torres has had a couple of chances to score in this one, but looks like a man lacking in confidence. He had an awful miss in the 10th minute when he took way too many touches, and has had his touch fail him on a couple of other occasions. Florent Malouda has also had his feet tangled up when it would have been easier to score, missing a good chance in the 13th minute. Chelsea's best chance on target came in the 31st minute, when Benrd Leno was forced into a great save on Daniel Sturridge.

Chelsea have been on top since the 5th minute, but can they turn that superior play into a goal? Bayer's defensive midfielders make life tough for any team, and Andre Villas-Boas might have to make some adjustments to find a goal.

For more on Chelsea FC and this match, head over to SB Nation's Chelsea blog We Ain't Got No History. Keep it on our Chelsea vs. Bayer Leverkusen StoryStream for updates throughout the match. Check out SB Nation Soccer for news and updates on all of the UEFA Champions League action. 

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Chelsea Vs. Bayer Leverkusen, 2011 UEFA Champions League: Lineups

Robin Dutt has changed the Bayer Leverkusen side to fit in young star Andreas Schürrle, but he hasn't dropped Michael Ballack as expected, Instead, Renato Augusto has been dropped, leaving Sidney Sam and Schürrle to flank Ballack on the wings. Striker Eren Derdiyok has also been dropped, with Stefan Kießling taking his place. Here are the complete lineups, plus substitutes.

Chelsea lineup (4-2-3-1): Cech; Cole, David Luiz, Ivanovic, Bosingwa; Mikel, Meireles; Malouda, Mata, Sturridge; Torres

Substitutes from: Hilario, Lampard, Ferreira, McEachran, Kalou, Alex, Anelka

Bayer Leverkusen lineup (4-2-3-1): Leno; Castro, Kadlec, Toprak, Reinartz; Rolfes, Bender; Sam, Ballack, Schürrle; Kießling

Substitutes from: Yelldell, Schwaab, Friedrich, Augusto, Balitsch, Derdiyok, Bellarabi

Kickoff is at 2:45 pm ET and we'll be covering the match here. For more on Chelsea FC and this match, head over to SB Nation's Chelsea blog We Ain't Got No History. Keep it on our Chelsea vs. Bayer Leverkusen StoryStream for updates leading up to the match, during the match and post-match. Check out SB Nation Soccer for news and updates on all of the UEFA Champions League action. 

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UEFA Champions League 2011: Where To Watch Chelsea Vs. Bayer Leverkusen On TV And Streaming Live Online

Chelsea are serious favorites to win at Stamford Bridge in their opening UEFA Champions League match on Tuesday night, but they'll have a serious test to deal with in Bayer Leverkusen. Robin Dutt's men are looking like favorites to gain a top four spot in the Bundesliga once again this season, and their budding star Andre Schürrle looks like he's going to make the starting lineup for Bayer. The key for Chelsea will be containing him, along with the other advanced midfield players Sidney Sam and Renato Augusto. Here's all of the schedule information, including where to watch on television and streaming live online.

Chelsea vs. Bayer Leverkusen

Venue: Stamford Bridge, London, England

Time: 2:45 pm ET, 7:45 pm BST, 8:45 pm CEST

Television: Fox Soccer Plus (USA), Sky Sports 2 (UK), Sportsnet One (Canada)

Online: FoxSoccer.tv (USA), UEFA.com (International)

For more on Chelsea FC and this match, head over to SB Nation's Chelsea blog We Ain't Got No History. Keep it on our Chelsea vs. Bayer Leverkusen StoryStream for updates leading up to the match, during the match and post-match. Check out SB Nation Soccer for news and updates on all of the UEFA Champions League action. 

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Chelsea Vs. Bayer Leverkusen, 2011 UEFA Champions League: Can Blues Create Width? - We Ain't Got No History

Bayern Leverkusen finished second in the German Bundesliga a year ago, but few consider them one of the two best teams in Germany. Those top two spots belong to Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich, but Leverkusen still have their spot as a very good team and one that will challenge Chelsea when the two open up UEFA Champions League group play action on Tuesday at Stamford Bridge.

With Chelsea led by a new manager, Andre Villas-Boas, no one is exactly sure how he will send his team out. There isn't much of a history to lean on and make an educated guess as to how his Blues side will come out. Graham MacAree from SB Nation's Chelsea blog We Ain't Go No History does his best to predict how Chelsea will play, with a nod towards using the Blues' two fantastic fullbacks to create width.

The midfield is the most interesting tactical battle between the two sides, and Andre Villas-Boas may choose to match Leverkusen's 4-2-3-1 to lock up the centre and instead focus on the flanks. Ashley Cole was back to something approximating his best against Sunderland and with Jose Bosingwa experiencing a renaissance under the new manager Chelsea can hit any team hard down the wings. Their visitors on Tuesday won't be an exception.

If Chelsea can get Cole and Bosingwa into the attack, any team will have trouble figuring out how to stop them. Of course there is also the question of who Villas-Boas chooses to play in the midfield and up top, something that MacAree also dives into in anticipation of one of the most intriguing fixtures on the first Champions League match day.

For more on Chelsea FC and this match, head over to SB Nation's Chelsea blog We Ain't Got No History. Keep it on our Chelsea vs. Bayer Leverkusen StoryStream for updates leading up to the match, during the match and post-match. Check out SB Nation Soccer for news and updates on all of the UEFA Champions League action.  

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