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Late goal helps Chelsea clinch friendly win over Suwon Bluewings

18 July 2007 11:14

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Didier Drogba's 80th-minute strike lifted Chelsea to a 1-0 victory over South Korean side Suwon Bluewings here Tuesday in a friendly football match.

Chelsea, tuning up for the English Premier League season, claimed their second victory in as many matches of their US tour, following a 2-1 win over Mexican side Club America at the weekend.

Drogba, who scored 33 goals for Chelsea last season, including the winner in the FA Cup final, notched his first pre-season goal after Shawn Wright-Phillips, on the right side of the penalty area, collected a pass from Mikel found Drogba at the left post.

On Saturday, Chelsea they will take on the Los Angeles Galaxy of Major League Soccer, who are slated to debut their new star David Beckham for the occasion if his sore left ankle allows.

Tuesday's game was at the Galaxy's Home Depot Center ground, where Beckham watched the Galaxy fall 3-0 to Mexican side Tigres in the first match of the night.

Chelsea's match against Suwon was a livelier affair, and as he did against Club America, manager Jose Mourinho elected to make wholesale changes at the interval.

The revamped side started the second half on a positive note, when after just three minutes Drogba attempted a tightly angled shot that was blocked by Bluewings keeper Kim Dae Hwan.

Florent Malouda tried from long range a minute later, Kim punching the shot back.

Brazilian striker Eduardo got a look for the Bluewings, but fired high over the crossbar from the edge of the penalty area.

Mourinho said the South Korean club was just the kind of test his players need.

"They are fast, they are strong physically, and there's no danger of injury because they play fair football," he said.

Now that he has had the chance to watch his players over two matches, Mourinho said he would expect his starting side to go deeper into the match against the Galaxy.

"Against the Galaxy, it will be the first time I don't play two teams," he said. "Now is the time I start having to make my decisions."

He said he hoped Beckham would be able to play for the Galaxy on Saturday.

"It would bring some life to the game to have David playing," he said.

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