15 Aug 2010

Chelsea and Blackpool dominate English Premier League

12:31 pm on 15 August 2010

The English football champions Chelsea have thrashed newly promoted West Bromwich Albion 6-0 at Stamford Bridge.

Didier Drogba grabbed a hat-trick and Florent Malouda scored twice as West Brom, managed by former Chelsea midfielder Roberto di Matteo, were picked apart.

The Premier League's opening day began with a goal-less draw between top four hopefuls Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City, also in London, while the day's big shock came from another promoted side, Blackpool.

Playing their first top-flight match in 39 years, the Tangerines thumped neighbours Wigan Athletic 4-0 away.

Blackpool manager Ian Holloway's delighted, considering he had to introduce some of the players to the team after they only came into the side this week.

Holloway thinks there's a fantastic spirit in his boys and they're going to need it by the end of the season.

All Whites defender Winston Reid made an inauspicious debut for West Ham United as they lost 3-0 at Aston Villa.

Reid, playing right back, was lucky not to give away a penalty for a challenge on English international James Milner in the first half but he did manage to get a late headed shot at goal, pushing it wide.

There were also wins to Blackburn Rovers, 1-0 over Everton, and Wolverhampton Wanderers, 2-1 over Stoke.

Bolton Wanderers and Fulham drew nil-all while Sunderland drew 2-2 with Birmingham City.

Last season's runners-up Manchester United face Championship winners Newcastle at Old Trafford on Monday.