Manchester United vs Chelsea: Clash of the Titans 2

In a top of the table thriller between first place Chelsea and second place Manchester United, the game delivered all that you could ask for, drama, intensity, goals, saves and even sending offs.

Chicharito scores the winning goal for Manchester United against Chelsea

Chicharito scores the winning goal for Manchester United against Chelsea

Football Deluxe

The first 30 minutes of the game Man United, could do no wrong, their ball movement and possession and passing was clean, crisp and urgent and Chelsea could not get near the ball. Man Utd opened the scoring after only 4 minutes with a well deserved goal. The goal was the climax of a solid build up with a Robin van Persie’s shot striking the post and the resulting rebound hit Chelsea’s David Luiz and ended up in the goal. And unfortunate goal but a well deserved lead.

United continued bossing the game as Chelsea continued chasing shadows. Barely 10 minutes had passed since the 1st goal, when Valencia broke down the right side, firing in a perfect square ball, which was finished by a clinical 1st time shot from van Persie. 2-0 Man Utd.

At this point in the game with United continuing to dominate, the game looked well in hand, but Chelsea didn’t become European Champions by but not being able to face adversity. There response was swift, from the 30 minute mark on, Chelsea took the game by the scruff of the neck and piled on the pressure, forcing Man Utd’s keeper David De Gea into three top class saves. Chelsea getting on the scoreboard was inevitable, a matter of when, not if.

The Chelsea breakthrough came on, the stroke of halftime as Wayne Rooney made a petulant challenge on Eden Hazard on top of his own box, after being out muscled by the Belgium. Rooney’s exuberance was punished severely, as the magical Juan Mata curled the ensuing free kick around the Man United wall and into the top corner. 2-1. Game on.

Chelsea began the 2nd half right from where they left off with constant pressure on united, the tying goal was a just matter of time. And it came after another good Chelsea build up an cross by Oscar, ending up with Ramirez, the little Brazilian, out jumping Man Utd’s Tom Cleverly and scoring with a text book downward header. 2-2.

Man utd, were awakened by Chelsea’s second goal and lodged a fight to get back into the game, culminating with a great through ball from van Persie, to the on running Ashley Young. Bratislav Ivanovic pursued United’s Young as he ran towards the goal, in doing so, there legs got tangled up, down went Young, an obvious denial of a goal scoring opportunity and a straight red for the Chelsea man. No room for argument a straight forward call and Chelsea go down to 10 men.

But, What happened next, merely minutes after the Ivanovic sending off, boggles the mind, leaving everyone in the stands, who was not a united fan, in total disbelief.

Chelsea’s Fernando Torres was surging towards the Man United goal as he was confronted by United’s Johnny Evans, Evans in a desperate challenge appears to catch Torres flush on the shin, Torres goes down. Evans immediately begins pleading his case, apparently begging not to be cautioned, but obviously admitting that he had fouled the Spaniard. To everyone’s shock and dismay, incredibly, the referee steps up and brandishes a yellow card in Torres’ direction; for diving. Torres on his knees, looks up in total shock at the decision, as is everyone else in the stadium. A second Yellow, Torres is sent off and Chelsea now go down to 9 men. Unbelievable.

Before the dust and shock of the Torres decision had settled Man United were again asserting their dominance. Within moments of the Torres sending off, Michael Carrick sliced Chelsea’s now porous defense open with a great pass to van Persie. Van Persie gathered the ball up, turned in one motion and got off a great strike, Petr Cech in the Chelsea goal was equal to it pulling off a great save.

In the resulting scramble, up popped “Johnny on the spot”, Chicharito to bundle the ball home, albeit, appearing to be coming from an offside position. Nevertheless the goal stood. 3-2 Man United. With less than 10 minutes to go, the reds went through the professional job of keeping the ball and not putting themselves in harm’s way and closing out the game. A contentious result at the game of a great game.

For united, it’s their first win at Stamford Bridge in over a decade. For Chelsea, it’s their first loss of the season. The result pulls the top three teams together, with Man City & United tied for second place, with Chelsea on top by a point. It’s looking like it is going to be a 3 horse race.