Andrew Dempsey reports from Richmond Park
Chelsea concluded the first leg of their pre-season preparations with a fine four goal victory over St Patrick’s Athletic at Richmond Park.
A brace from Olivier Giroud in the second half helped the Blues along their way as Emerson and Mason Mount opened the scoring in the first half for a rejuvenated Europa League champions.
Frank Lampard took his Chelsea side to the famous Emmett Road venue on his first visit to the ground since his debut in 2000 when he captained West Ham United as a fresh faced 22-year-old.
Similarly to their quick start at Dalymount Park, the travelling Blues went close early on as Michy Batshuayi forced a good save from Saints ‘keeper Barry Murphy.
Chelsea unsurprisingly dominated the early stages of the game and really should have taken the lead after ten minutes when the lively Batshuayi saw his rasping effort crash off the top of the bar.
However, Lampard’s charges were not to be denied early on as they took the lead after just 15 minutes of play through Mason Mount.
Mount, who impressed at Derby County last term, was found by a lovely deft ball from Mateo Kovacic as the Blues grabbed the goal their early play merited.
Former Everton midfielder and English international Ross Barkley then hit the post just before the thirty-minute mark as the Athletic failed to deal with the relentless pressure they were subjected by the Europa League champions.
After Harry Kenny saw his side have their first effort on target, Chelsea doubled their lead through Emerson Palmieri’s effort from outside the box.
Murphy was unable to save in what looked a routine save for the ex-Shamrock Rovers shot stopper.
The Blues impressed throughout and had opportunities to extend their lead to three as Batshuayi saw his effort tipped over the bar after a fine through ball from Barkley.
Murphy made amends for his earlier mistake with moments to go in the first half when he saved a one-on-one with Abraham bearing down on goal as Pats went in at the break only two behind.
A separate Chelsea eleven began the second half and continued on from where their fellow teammates started. Olivier Giroud and Pedro linked up well as Murphy saved well.
Highly rated Billy Gilmour made his Richmond Park bow and looked lively from the off, with his pace and technical ability standing out against a leggy St Patrick’s Athletic.
Gilmour was the main instigator of the Blues next clear-cut opening as he fed the ball through to Kasey Palmer who found Pedro free but the Saints ‘keeper was alert to smother the danger.
With the pressure ratcheting up a notch, Chelsea grabbed their third just after the hour mark, with Giroud turning home an excellent Kenedy cross from wide.
The Inchicore outfit to their credit grew into the game late on without troubling the Chelsea rear-guard at all, with much of their positive play coming through the midfield thirds with no real end product.
Sub Darragh Burns was a very bright spark for the Saints during his last thirty-minute cameo, forcing referee Paul McLaughlin to brandish a yellow card to Danish centre-back Andreas Christensen with ten to play.
World Cup winner Giroud added the gloss to the score line at the death with a fine finish as Lampard departed Dublin with a draw and a win to kickstart his reign in charge of Chelsea.
St. Patrick's Athletic: Barry Murphy; Ciaran Kelly (Simon Madden, H/T), Paul Cleary (Lee Desmond, H/T), Ian Bermingham, David Webster (Eric Molloy, 55); Rhys McCabe, Darragh Markey (Glory Nzingo, 71), Chris Forrester (Cian Coleman, 60), James Doona (Darragh Burns, 59), Dean Clarke; Jake Walker (Gary Shaw, H/T).
Subs not used: Louise Khoury, Kevin Kelly, Padraig Finnerty, Brendan Clarke, Kevin Toner.
Chelsea: Willy Caballero; David Luiz, Emerson Palmieri dos Santos, Fikayo Tomori; Jorginho Frello Filho, Ross Barkley, Mateo Kovacic, Mason Mount; Michy Batshuayi, Tammy Abraham.
Chelsea second half: Jamie Cumming, Andreas Christensen, Tiémoué Bakayoko, Cesar Azpilicueta, Marcos Alonso, Billy Gilmore, Olivier Giroud, Kasey Palmer, Pedro Rodriguez, Kurt Zouma.
Booked: Andreas Christensen (81).
Referee: Paul McLaughlin.
ExtraTime.ie Player of the Match: Michy Batshuayi (Chelsea).