Isaac Hayden snatched a last-gasp winner as Chelsea failed to make their dominance count in a dramatic 1-0 Premier League defeat to Newcastle United at St James’ Park.
Heading into Saturday’s fixture on the back of a 3-0 demolition of Burnley, Chelsea had almost 70 per cent of the possession, yet could not pick their way through Steve Bruce’s well-drilled side and came unstuck in the final minute of stoppage time.
Having cleared a corner, Chelsea switched off when the ball was worked back in, giving Hayden the chance to head in from point-blank range, though Kepa Arrizabalaga could have done better.
Prior to Hayden’s winner, it had been all Chelsea, with Tammy Abraham spurning two great chances, though Joelinton had hit the crossbar midway through the second half.
Ultimately, though, the Blues’ dominance counted for nothing as Frank Lampard’s fourth-placed side suffered their first defeat in four top-flight matches.
Newcastle were dealt a blow early on, Jetro Willems taken off on a stretcher with an apparent knee injury following an innocuous coming together with Callum Hudson-Odoi.
Despite Chelsea’s stranglehold on the game, Newcastle would have been ahead had Joelinton’s header not struck the bar.
Abraham’s improvised flick hit the woodwork at the other end just after the half-hour, though the striker was flagged offside, before Martin Dubravka made a fine save from N’Golo Kante’s close-range strike.
Chelsea looked set to finally break the deadlock when Abraham latched onto substitute Ross Barkley’s deflected pass, but he failed to keep his composure after rounding Dubravka.
Newcastle’s goalkeeper almost gifted Chelsea an opener with 10 minutes remaining with a bizarre save, though he just got enough on it to deny Abraham and set the stage for Hayden to nod home Allan Saint-Maximin’s cross in the 94th minute.
Newcastle XI: Dubravka 6.5; Fernandez 7.5, Lascelles 7, Clark 7; Krafth 5.5 (S Longstaff 71, 6), Hayden 7, Shelvey 5.5 (M Longstaff 84), Willems 5 (Ritchie 12, 6); Almiron 7, Joelinton 6.5, Saint-Maximin 6.5
Subs not used: Darlow, Schar, Lejeune, Atsu
Scorers: Hayden 90
Chelsea XI (4-2-3-1): Kepa 6; James 7 (Emerson 75, 6), Rudiger 6.5, Christensen 6.5, Azpilicueta 6.5; Kante 7, Jorginho 6; Hudson-Odoi 6, Mount 5.5 (Barkley 67, 6), Willian 6; Abraham 5.5 (Batshuayi 80, 6)
Subs not used: Caballero, Pedro, Zouma, Kovacic,
Referee: C Kavanagh 6