Relaid again after the storm of controversy that accompanied the semi-finals last month when players struggled to stay on their feet, at least the surface did not create that problem.

But, coloured brown in parts, neither side found it easy to play on, with Chelsea skipper John Terry particularly critical after the game.

Terry found allies in Portsmouth boss Avram Grant and Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti, neither of whom was impressed by the surface provided for such a prestigious occasion.

"The pitch is not so good," said Grant.

"It was better than the semi-final but Wembley is supposed to be the temple of football. That is not the temple of pitches."

Ancelotti was broadly supportive after the semi-final win over Aston Villa.

However, having booked a Community Shield date with Manchester United on August 8 after completing the first domestic double in their history, Chelsea are condemning themselves to play on what Ancelotti believes is a less-than-perfect surface.

"In the semi-final players were slipping over all the time," he said.

"This time it was different. Players stayed on their feet and didn't slip but the pitch was not so good."