Scoreless. Shocking. #Rafalution
45 minutes are in the books at Stamford Bridge, and it was more of the same from the boys in blue. Chelsea dominated possession for the first half of this replay, but that dominance of the ball didn't end up leading to too many clear chances. The few they did have were wasted, with both Oscar and Frank Lampard missing relatively decent chances to put the home side ahead.
Chelsea are also very, very lucky not to be behind in this one, as a ridiculous refereeing decision waved off a Brentford goal. There was absolutely no reason not to play the advantage there, with a Brentford player having possession of the ball inside of Chelsea's box.
Full credit to Brentford for a fairly well played first half. They don't seem too concerned with getting forward on the attack, content to sit back and pack their own 18-yard box with the occasional counter attack. They aren't allowing Chelsea much space to attack close to goal, and they've done a pretty decent job of blocking any shots from distance that the home side have attempted.
It will be interesting to see how Rafa Benitez approaches the second half. Chelsea have looked very dangerous on set pieces, so attacking from wide and shooting from distance would seem to be an excellent way to put pressure on the visitors. Demba Ba has also been doing a fairly decent job of pulling the center backs very deep, creating openings inside of the box for oncoming midfielders to attack. I guess just finishing a chance or two wouldn't hurt either, as Chelsea have had a few.