Chelsea gain first leg advantage

Fernando Torres inspired Chelsea to a 3-1 victory over Rubin Kazan in the first leg of their Europa League Quarter Final tie.

The Spanish striker opened the scoring on sixteen minutes with a close range finish, before Victor Moses doubled the host’s advantage shortly after the half hour mark.

Bibras Natkho converted a penalty shortly before half time after John Terry handled in the area, but Torres restored the Blues’ two goal advantage with twenty minutes left to play.

The return leg in Russia will be played next Thursday, with Rafael Benitez’s men odds on to progress to the semi-finals.

However, the club will first turn their attention to Sunday’s visit of struggling Sunderland, where they will recommence their challenge for a top four spot.

The Blues currently sit in fourth place, just two points ahead of Arsenal, and two behind Tottenham Hotspur in third.

Sunderland are bottom of the division’s form table having gone eight games without  a win, a run which saw the club part company with manager Martin O’Neil.

Former West Ham United striker Paolo Di Canio has taken the reigns at the Stadium of Light; a stadium where Chelsea have emerged victorious in each of their last eight visits.