* Chelsea beat Newcastle United 3-1
* Dwight Gayle scored a surprise opener for Newcastle
* Eden Hazard equalised in the 21st minute after Chelsea pressure
* Alvaro Morata made it 2-1 with a header
* Hazard scored second-half penalty to secure victory
* Chelsea away to West Ham next, Newcastle host Leicester City (Adds quotes)
Dec 2 (Reuters) - Two goals from Eden Hazard and one by Alvaro Morata earned Chelsea a workmanlike 3-1 Premier League victory over Newcastle United on Saturday.
Dwight Gayle gave Rafa Benitez’s Newcastle side a surprise lead, rattling his shot home in the 12th minute after Chelsea keeper Thibaut Courtois had dived at the feet of the advancing Jacob Murphy.
But Chelsea, third in the table, quickly fought back, earning two corners and hitting the post before Hazard got on the end of a ball parried by defender Florian Lejeune in the 21st minute.
Spain striker Morata’s simple header from a Victor Moses cross, his 10th in all competitions this season, made it 2-1 for the home side at halftime and Hazard scored his eighth of the campaign from the penalty spot after Matt Ritchie brought down Moses.
“We must be pleased, we started a bit slowly and when we went 1-0 we started to play with intensity and had chances to score,” Chelsea manager Antonio Conte told reporters.
“It was a good performance from all my players. It was very important to take three points and we did this.”
Conte praised the contribution of Belgian Hazard.
“He played a really good game,” the Italian said. “He enjoyed it a lot to play this type of football. Eden is an important player. With him we change our system. He can play as second striker or as number 10.”
Reporting by Clare Lovell, editing by Ed Osmond