Jose Mourinho and his men came into the West London derby, without a win since August 21 and smarting from two successive losses to Everton and Basel. They were almost behind again in the first half, but Fulham striker Darren Bent shot tamely at Petr Cech.
Oscar – once again preferred to Juan Mata, who was completely left out of the squad – scored the Blues first goal in four hours, capitalising on Stockdale’s error to tap in. With five minutes to go, Nigerian midfielder Mikel Obi made the points safe, bundling home from inside the box – his first goal in 258 games.
Earlier in the day, Liverpool lost their game of the season, after Southampton ran away with a 1-0 victory at Anfield. Brendan Rodgers started with four centre-backs, but Lovren scored from a needlessly conceded set-piece, to give the Saints all three points.
In other games, Aston Villa beat Norwich 1-0 at Carrow Road. Everton, inspired by a Leighton Baines double, fought back to win West Ham 3-2, while Sessesgnon scored on his West Brom debut agains former club Sunderland, as the Baggies won 3-0 at the Hawthorns. Loic Remy’s brace was not enough, as Newcastle lost 3-2 to Hull City.
Aaron Ramsey continued his hot streak in front of goal with Arsenal’s opener, as the Gunners cruised to a 3-1 victory over Stoke City at the Emirates.
The Welshman scored in the fifth minute, after Asmir Begovic could only parry Mesut Ozil’s free-kick onto his path. The visitors drew level few minutes later, after Geoff Cameron forced home a rebound.
Per Mertesacker grabbed his first goal of this campaign, to put the hosts in front, heading in Ozil’s corner kick. Bacary Sagna made the points safe, after a period of serious pressure from Stoke, with Ozil providing the assist again.
Arsenal are currently top now with 12 points, two ahead of Liverpool and Chelsea.
In the other game played simultaenously, Swansea beat Crystal Palace on their turf 2-0, thanks to goals from Michu and Dyer.
Manchester United, without talismanic striker Robin van Persie, were soundly beaten in their derby with Manchester City 4-1 at the Etihad on Sunday afternoon.
Sergio Aguero began scoring in the 17th minute, connecting with a stunning cross from Kolarov, after good hold-up play from Samir Nasri. Yaya Toure made it 2-0 on the stroke of half time, bundling in a loose ball in the area with his knee.
City began the second half the same way they ended the first, with Aguero finishing expertly past David De Gea again, from Alvaro Negredo’s cross. Nasri made it 4-0, converting Jesus Navas’ pull-out, before Wayne Rooney scored a spectacular free-kick to make it 4-1.
In the other game, Tottenham Hotspur needed a 92nd minute winner from Paulinho, to take all three points against a resilient Cardiff City team.