Chelsea grabbed a vital away goal to take a potentially decisive 1-0 advantage back to Stamford Bridge for the second-leg of their Champions League quarter-final tie with Benfica.

Both sides had chances before Salomon Kalou, a surprise starter for Chelsea, got the game's only goal after 75 minutes.

After much talk beforehand about Frank Lampard's comments about Chelsea no longer being the force they once were, it was ironically the England midfielder who was left out of the starting lineup.

Instead Mikel John Obi was given a start in central midfield alongside Raul Meireles, while Kalou began in place of Daniel Sturrdige.

Benfica created the first real chance of the contest through Oscar Cardozo in the 19th minute. Bruno Cesar lofted a perfect long pass with his left foot to find the Paraguayan striker past the last Chelsea defender, but after chesting the ball down, Cardozo was just unable to turn his body and get his left-footed volley on target.

In the second half Cardozo came even closer to breaking the deadlock with a powerful effort. A long-throw from Benfica was only half-cleared to Cardozo who blasted the ball goalward, but, with Cech beaten, the ball struck David Luiz just in front of the line to save the day for Chelsea.

The match looked to be heading Chelsea's way after a long punt down field was horribly misjudged by Luisao and Juan Mata found himself clean through on goal. The inventive Spaniard took the bouncing ball around the goalkeeper just inside the area, but from a tight angle he could only strike his left-footed shot against the outside of the post.

Back at the other end it took a good save from Petr Cech to prevent midfielder Axel Witsel from grabbing the opener. From Nicolas Gaitan's perfect left-wing cross, Witsel met the ball with a powerful header at the far post, but Cech got down well to turn the ball away.

But it would be Chelsea who grabbed an all-important away goal, through Kalou. Fernando Torres, selected in preference to Didier Drogba, sprinted down the right before chipping a low ball into the middle for Kalou to tap home.

The result vindicates Di Matteo's surprise lineup and gives Chelsea a fantastic chance of reaching the semi-finals and likely a revenge meeting with Barcelona.

Benfica 0-1 Chelsea footyroom.com by footyroom