Match ends, FC Schalke 04 0, Chelsea 5.
- Chelsea win Group G to reach last 16
- Terry scores Blues' fastest Champions League goal
- Night to forget for Schalke boss Di Matteo
Chelsea qualified for the Champions League knockout phase with a group match to spare as they ruthlessly swept aside Roberto Di Matteo's Schalke.
The Blues, knowing a win would put them in the last 16, led through John Terry's header after 86 seconds.
A slick move ended with Willian driving in the second, before Schalke defender Jan Kirchhoff headed into his own net as Chelsea led 3-0 at half-time.
Didier Drogba tapped in before setting up Ramires to head in the fifth.
Chelsea substitutes Drogba and Ramires netted in the last 15 minutes to cap a flawless performance that merited the emphatic scoreline for the visitors in Gelsenkirchen.
The Blues' superiority in the Premier League, where they are unbeaten in 12 matches and lead by six points, has led some to ask whether they can go through the entire top-flight season without losing.
On this evidence, as the Blues starved Schalke of possession and then regularly sliced them apart in attack, Jose Mourinho's men could also be a difficult team to beat for Europe's elite.
Mourinho is Chelsea's most successful manager after winning six trophies in his first spell at Stamford Bridge between 2004 and 2007, but was unable to land the one prize craved by Blues owner Roman Abramovich - the Champions League.
Instead, it was Di Matteo who lifted the biggest prize in European club football when he masterminded Chelsea's victory in the 2012 tournament.
But if Chelsea continue to produce this quality of performance when the knockout stage resumes in the new year, then Mourinho will believe he can join the Italian in turning the west London side into European champions.
German side Schalke produced an abject performance riddled with defensive errors. But their mistakes were brutally exploited by Chelsea's desire, sharpness and invention.
Before kick-off, Mourinho stressed the importance of sealing their last-16 place with a win - and rendering the final group match against Sporting Lisbon meaningless.
|Teams already through to the last 16|
|Paris St-Germain||Shakhtar Donetsk|
The Blues boss demanded a fast start from his players and allowed himself a wry smile when they achieved exactly that through Terry's header.
After Diego Costa's low shot forced a corner inside the opening minute, ex-England skipper Terry out-jumped two Schalke defenders to power Cesc Fabregas's set-piece into the top corner.
Chelsea keeper Thibaut Courtois barely had a save to make on a quiet night - although the Belgian did almost concede a fortuitous equaliser after 13 minutes. Cameroon forward Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting's deflected shot looped over Courtois, who was grateful to see the ball cannon off his crossbar.
That was a rare Schalke threat as the Blues dominated possession, out-thinking and outmuscling their German opponents.
The intelligence and positioning of Serbia midfielder Nemanja Matic broke down any Schalke moves, allowing his more attack-minded team-mates - Fabregas and Willian particularly - to stretch the home defence.
And, inevitably, Fabregas and Willian - along with Eden Hazard - created the slick move that allowed the Brazilian to drill under the body of Schalke keeper Ralf Fahrmann.
Chelsea all but secured victory before the break when home defender Kirchhoff, surrounded by team-mates and under little pressure from visiting players, headed into his own goal.
But the away side refused to ease off in the second half as Drogba and Ramires made it a night to forget for former boss Di Matteo.
- 12HögerBooked at 18mins
- 3KirchhoffSubstituted forClemensat 45'minutes
- 9BoatengSubstituted forMeyerat 63'minutes
- 4FàbregasSubstituted forSchürrleat 78'minutes
- 8OscarSubstituted forSantos do Nascimentoat 75'minutes
- 10E Hazard
- 19Diego CostaSubstituted forDrogbaat 66'minutes
- 3Filipe Luís
- 7Santos do Nascimento
- Jonas Eriksson
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, FC Schalke 04 0, Chelsea 5.
Attempt saved. Eden Hazard (Chelsea) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Willian.
Foul by John Terry (Chelsea).
Max Meyer (FC Schalke 04) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Corner, FC Schalke 04. Conceded by Nemanja Matic.
Attempt saved. Christian Clemens (FC Schalke 04) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Dennis Aogo.
Offside, Chelsea. Nemanja Matic tries a through ball, but Didier Drogba is caught offside.
Foul by Gary Cahill (Chelsea).
Max Meyer (FC Schalke 04) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Substitution, Chelsea. André Schürrle replaces Cesc Fàbregas.
Goal! FC Schalke 04 0, Chelsea 5. Ramires (Chelsea) header from very close range to the top right corner. Assisted by Didier Drogba with a cross.
Goal! FC Schalke 04 0, Chelsea 4. Didier Drogba (Chelsea) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Willian.
Substitution, Chelsea. Ramires replaces Oscar.
Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Benedikt Höwedes (FC Schalke 04).
Offside, Chelsea. Eden Hazard tries a through ball, but Oscar is caught offside.
Attempt blocked. Marco Höger (FC Schalke 04) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Benedikt Höwedes.
Delay over. They are ready to continue.
Delay in match Marco Höger (FC Schalke 04) because of an injury.