In a very even first half, the two sides were level at half time with no goals scored, but with Newcastle having the better chances in a closely contested match.
Newcastle had the better chances and captain Owen had two good chances, one after just 7 minutes when he was though on goal, but lofted the ball over the keeper and the cross bar, when he could so easily have put the ball in the net.
Both teams were playing the same system of 4-3-3 with Newcastle looking very solid at the back.
In fact in the first half neither goalkeeper had a shot to save as both teams struggled to get the better of midfield.
After 28 minutes danger man Oba Martins had the ball on the left hand side, and controlled if beautifully with his chest and had a shot blocked and the ball rolled clear to the edge of the area.
Michael Owen came in and it seemed that he must score but Chelsea captain John Terry brilliantly kicked off the line.
It was an escape by Chelsea and Newcastle should really have gone ahead with the opportunity.
That was the best chance of the half, which Newcastle United just shaded. Chelsea seemed a little flat, probably after their last two emotion packed games.
Newcastle were playing compact, good football, and were taking no chances at the back.
Chelsea did have a good chance after 35 minutes when Chelsea opened up the Newcastle defense and Ballack was clear in the inside left channel, but Ballack weakly shot over the bar.
Newcastle have an excellent chance to win this game, and we expect both sides to open up in the second half.
Oba Martins is proving to be a handful for the Chelsea defense, and Newcastle could have the match-winner in Oba.
It appears that Chelsea are struggling to reach their usual heights, and Newcastle have been the better team so far in the game.