As it was the first half was uneventful until a hoof upfield ended that age-old argument about who would win a battle between a Beast and a Cannibal. Baptista drew Boulahrouz into a rash challenge and Gilberto obliged from the penalty spot.
Forty-five minutes against 10 men loomed. Predictably we made and missed chances - Chelsea battled back and the exceptional Essien equalised. You could almost admire Chelsea's fight but their pathetic show at the final whistle was reminder enough of a club lacking in class from top to bottom.
Jens Lehmann - 7 - Was surprisingly underemployed, but made some vital saves to preserve a point.
Emmanuel Eboue - 6 - Energetic as ever and almost won the match in the dying moments.
Kolo Toure - 6 - Surely happy to be facing Kalou rather than their compatriot Drogba, but has played better.
William Gallas - 6 - If only - a great chance to put us 2-0 up but he still showed Chelsea that it was an own goal to let him go.
Gael Clichy - 7 - Superb again and increasingly a threat going forward.
Cesc Fabregas - 6 - A strange move to play him wide and he always looked to move inside to try to get into the game.
Denilson - 7 - Was a growing influence until crudely put out of the game.
Gilberto Silva - 7 - As ever a solid presence in defence and stepped up to the spot yet again when we needed him.
Abou Diaby - 5 - Never comfortable on the left but gave glimpses of the ability that makes our options in central midfield so promising for next season. If he could only add attacking his team-mates in the papers and on the training pitch then those supporters who seem to want us to make a bid for Joey Barton may be appeased.
Julio Baptista - 5 - Kept quiet in the main as he seemed devoid of the ball to miscontrol, have passes intercepted and occasionally score a goal. Good work for the penalty.
Emmanuel Adebayor - 6 - Early miss was matched by another in the second half. A real handful but just doesn't have the cutting edge that Henry and Van Persie provide.
Alexander Hleb - 4 - Rather annoyingly, for all his skills he once again cost us with negligence in defence. May have to get used to a place on the bench.
Justin Hoyte - 6 - !!!!! An Englishman - didn't disgrace himself.