Chelsea 8-0 Aston Villa: What Just Happened?

Sam TigheWorld Football Tactics Lead WriterDecember 23, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 23:  Ramires of Chelsea (R) celebrates with Oscar and Victor Moses as he scores their eighth goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Aston Villa at Stamford Bridge on December 23, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Julian Finney/Getty Images

Days such as this are rare in occurrence.

An out-of-form Chelsea side welcomed an Aston Villa side riding the crest of a wave to Stamford Bridge in a pre-Christmas Sunday encounter.

With Villa fans making their way to London in a positive frame of mind, they had no clue they were about to become the witnesses of one of football's greatest ever slaughterings.

It started in the third minute. A miscommunication at the back saw Fernando Torres rise unchallenged to head home from a César Azpilicueta cross and at that point, many will have been revisiting their memories of a 7-1 thrashing locked firmly away in the vaults of their minds.

From there, only Brad Guzan—who was in fine form in the Villa goal—kept it from becoming a 20-25 goal deficit. No exaggerations.

It's easy to say Aston Villa played badly and Chelsea performed superbly, but sometimes it really is as simple as that.

The Blues found fluent form under Rafa Benitez for the first time since the interim manager's inception, while Lambert's lions fell rather heavily from cloud nine.

David Luiz ran the show for Chelsea, and it wasn't just his free kick that caught the eye. He single-handedly dominated Villa's midfield three, while he also provided the link from defence to midfield they've been crying out for.

It's no coincidence that one of Chelsea's biggest ever wins comes on the day that Luiz plays instead of the suspended John Obi Mikel.

After winning the midfield battle against a helpless and wasteful trio of Brett Holman, Ashley Westwood and Barry Bannan, Luiz was able to deliver the ball far more regularly to his creative teammates.

Eden Hazard, Frank Lampard and Juan Mata saw a lot of the ball in the final third and were able to grind Villa down from the first whistle. Eric Lichaj, in particular, struggled immensely on the left with Azpilicueta and Victor Moses double-teaming him.

Ultimately, what beat Villa so harshly was a succession of unstoppable, world-class goals. Can you remember a game in which so many strikes of this quality found the net?

Luiz's free kick, Lampard's half-volley and Torres' header were all incredible. Oscar's penalty was brilliant, Ramires' run and finish was sublime.

What a day to be a Chelsea fan.