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Chelsea romp to title with eight-goal triumph

Chelsea captain John Terry can barely conceal his delight after another goal goes in at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea captain John Terry can barely conceal his delight after another goal goes in at Stamford Bridge.
  • Chelsea thrash Wigan Athletic 8-0 to clinch English Premier League title
  • Chelsea dethrone Manchester United who beat Stoke 4-0 but finish one point behind
  • Didier Drogba with a second half hat-trick clinches award for top league scorer
  • Wayne Rooney limps off before the finish at Old Trafford

(CNN) -- Chelsea routed 10-man Wigan Athletic 8-0 at Stamford Bridge on Sunday to dethrone Manchester United as English Premier League champions.

United, who needed Chelsea to slip up in the final match of the season, beat Stoke 4-0 at Old Trafford, but it proved academic as Chelsea brushed aside Wigan in ruthless fashion.

First half goals from Nicolas Anelka and Frank Lampard from the penalty spot effectively sealed the title for Carlo Ancelotti's high-scoring team, but they turned on the style after the break to delight their fans.

Wigan, a man light after Gary Caldwell was sent off just before halftime in conceding the penalty, were overwhelmed as Didier Drogba hit a second half hat-trick.

His strike partner Nicolas Anelka added a second, with Salomon Kalou and England left back Ashley Cole also on target.

Big-spending Chelsea have had to play second fiddle while United have won three straight titles and it was a sweet moment for their captain John Terry.

"Magnificent, it's been a hard three years to see Manchester United lift it," he told Sky Sports.

Magnificent, it's been a hard three years to see Manchester United lift it
--Chelsea captain John Terry

"It's been up and down all year and we went away to Wigan and got beat, but after we went ahead 1-0 today it was the first time I thought that the title was ours," he added.

Chelsea can complete the domestic double with victory over cash-strapped Portsmouth in the FA Cup final at Wembley next weekend, while for United there was bitter disappointment as they remained a point adrift.

Wayne Rooney also sparked a World Cup scare when he limped out of the easy win at Old Trafford with what appeared to be a recurrence of the groin problem he first picked up at Blackburn last month.

Before that, Darren Fletcher and Ryan Giggs scored before the break.

A Danny Higginbotham own goal and Park Ji-sung's late diving header doubled their advantage but it was all in vain.

Rooney had gone into the match level with Drogba on 26 league goals in the race for the Golden Boot, but could not add to his tally.

Ivory Coast international Drogba had been denied the chance to take Chelsea's first half penalty as regular taker Lampard ushered him away.

He openly showed his disappointment, but after the break all was forgotten as he finally got on the scoresheet, including a penalty, with Lampard this time making way as the victory was assured.

Drogba's first and Chelsea's fifth took them to 100 goals for the season, the first time this has been achieved since the Premier League was created.

But Ancelotti revealed that he had to speak with Drogba at halftime to tell him to calm down.

"It was my decision, if there was a penalty, to give it to Lampard," he told Press Association.

"I told him to stay calm and quiet because he'd have opportunities to score in the second half. I said: 'Quiet. You can score in the second half."'

In other action on the final day of the season, Arsenal clinched third spot with a 4-0 home win over Europa League finalists Fulham while north London rivals Tottenham Hotspur stay fourth after losing 4-2 at relegated Burnley.