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Salah overlooked as Chelsea draw at Maribor
Salah overlooked as Slovenian side Maribor manage an unexpected point in a 1-1 draw against Chelsea at the Ljudski stadium.
Unlike the previous game at Stamford Bridge that saw Chelsea thrash Maribor 6-0 in what was a new UCL record, the first-half ended goalless with both teams creating few chances.
Chelsea came close to opening the score sheet thanks to chances from Kurt Zouma, Didier Drogba, and Eden Hazard, whereas the home team’s biggest threat came from Ibraimi who found his way through the Chelsea defence but the ball was cleared from the touchline by Zouma.
Mourinho made two half-time changes replacing Willian and Schurrle with Oscar and Diego Costa respectively, in attempts to find the winning goal in the second-half. However, Maribor started the second-half start strongly and scored in the 50th minute thanks to a brilliant shot by Ibraimi, who placed the ball into the back of the net from the edge of the box to give the home side the lead.
The last change for the Blues came just after conceding with Ramires coming on for Filipe Luis, leaving Mohamed Salah on the bench as an unused substitute once again.
The Slovenian side continued to impress as Zahovic missed an empty goal and then placed an easy ball above the crossbar. However, Chelsea responded strongly and equalised shortly after from a corner-kick. John Terry rose high to head the ball that was going towards the goal but Matic managed to get the last touch to put himself on the score sheet.
Chelsea were back in control of the game and had a chance to take all three points when they were awarded a penalty. However, Hazard missed from the penalty spot in the 84th minute thanks to a save from keeper Jasmin Handanovic after a poor spot kick from the Belgian.
NK Maribor secured a precious point to keep their hopes of making it to the round of 16. The other game in the group saw Sporting beat FC Schalke 4-2.
UCL group G as it stands:
- Chelsea FC 8
- FC Schalke 5
- Sporting 4
- NK Maribor 3