Monday, February 6, 2012

United fightback to stun Chelsea

Manchester United staged a typically spirited fightback to stun Chelsea and earn a point at Stamford Bridge.

United looked dead and buried when David Luiz made it 3-0, but two Wayne Rooney penalties and a Javier Hernandez header six minutes from time ensured they closed the gap on Manchester City to two points.

Sir Alex Ferguson’s side have a disappointing record at Chelsea over the past decade and were under pressure following City’s comfortable 3-0 victory over Fulham. The Blues meanwhile were under plenty of pressure themselves, with their premier league odds slipping in recent weeks after some damaging defeats. They knew a win against the Red Devils would go a long way to getting them back on track.

Despite their recent struggles at Stamford Bridge, United started brightly and felt the home side should have been reduced to ten men when last man Gary Cahill brought Danny Welbeck down on the edge of the area.

The visitors were enraged but continued to dominate play, which made the opening goal just before half-time all the more surprising. Daniel Sturridge showed enterprise to evade Patrice Evra in the box before seeing his cross diverted home by Jonny Evans.

Things went from bad to worse for United within a minute of the restart. Fernando Torres delivered an inch-perfect cross from the right and Juan Mata volleyed the ball past David de Gea in emphatic fashion.

Chelsea looked to have made the game safe four minutes later when Luiz’s header deflected past De Gea, only for United to storm back.

They needed more than a slice of fortune along the way. Rooney converted from the spot after Sturridge fouled Evra and repeated the feat ten minutes later when Branislav Ivanovic was adjudged to have brought down Welbeck.

Chelsea were on the back foot and Hernandez completed the comeback for United with a firm header.

The home side pressed for a winner but found an inspired De Gea in their way and had to settle for a point from a seemingly unassailable position. They may have left disappointed, but it can’t be denied that the fans who Watch Football Live at Stamford Bridge were treated to a fantastic 90 minutes of football.

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