Torres double helps Chelsea cruise past Genk

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Chelsea equals biggest Champions League win

Chelsea's Fernando Torres reacts during their Champions League group E soccer match against KRC Genk at Stamford Bridge in London Oct 19, 2011. [Photo/Agencies]

Chelsea equalled their biggest win in the Champions League when they brushed aside the ineffective challenge of injury-hit Belgian champions Racing Genk for an effortless 5-0 victory at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday.

Two goals from Fernando Torres and one each from Raul Meireles, Branislav Ivanovic and substitute Salomon Kalou put Chelsea in command of Group E and they will almost certainly take their place in the knockout rounds with another win over Genk in the return leg on Nov 1.

Meireles fired Chelsea in front after eight minutes and they doubled their lead when Torres, currently suspended from domestic matches, scored three minutes later.

The Spaniard headed in the third after 27 minutes and Ivanovic headed in a rare goal three minutes before the break to make it 4-0.

Kalou made it 5-0 when he fired in from point-blank range just two minutes after replacing Frank Lampard to give Chelsea their biggest Champions League win at the Bridge and equal their biggest victory in the competition, 5-0 at Galatsaray in 1999.

Genk, missing three injured defenders and their influential captain David Hubert offered no threat to the Chelsea defence and their most memorable contribution to the night was their garish crimson strip.

There was little doubt about the outcome even before the match began with Genk in a poor run of domestic form having lost their last three matches and bottom of Group E with just one point and no goals.

By contrast Chelsea have only lost once, to Manchester United, all season and although they had won only one of their previous five games in the competition, it was always going to be a night of damage limitation for the visitors.

Torres, who had only scored three times for Chelsea since his 50.0 million pounds move from Liverpool in January, almost put them ahead a minute before Meireles scored when he hit the post from four yards with only keeper Laszlo Koteles to beat.

Meireles struck with a hard low shot from outside the box and soon after Torres latched on to a Frank Lampard pass and slotted home.

He made it 3-0 with a textbook header from a Meireles cross after 27 minutes and Ivanovic headed the fourth from a Florent Malouda free kick.

Chelsea took their foot of the gas in the second half but even then Genk offered little to worry them and Kalou wrapped up an easy win after Koteles made a fine reflex save to deny Torres his hat-trick but could not stop Kalou scoring.

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