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Pedro and Eden Hazard made light of Diego Costa’s absence as they helped Chelsea create a new club record with a 3-0 win over Bournemouth on Boxing Day.
The Blues are on 11 matches winning streak going into the game at Stamford Bridge and they were without their talisman Costa who after he picked up his fifth yellow card of the season in their last match was unavailable through suspension.
But goals from his strike partners opened up seven points gap at the top of the league table, which may reduce back to six points if Liverpool win their match on Tuesday.
Antonio Conte’s side have now won 12 games on the trot as they maintained their firm grip at the summit of the table. Without both Costa and N’Golo Kante, who have both been relentless in their winning run, Conte will be pleased with his side performance.
The Italian boss refused to feature Michy Batshuayi which had raised some eyebrows but his decision was vindicated by the impressive performances of the three.
Batshuayi has not started a league game for Chelsea since his £33 million move from Marseille this summer and was introduced to the match only in the 93rd minute but the referee signalled the end of the match before he even kick a ball.
Pedro opened the scoring in the 24th minutes before Hazard added the second four minutes after restart from the penalty spot after he was fouled by Simon Francis in the area.
Pedro scored his second and third goal of the match in injury time which took a defection off Steve Cook.
Conte now become the first manager to win 12 league games consecutively in the club’s entire 111-year history.