Coming off a 2-0 triumph over Bayer Leverkusen at midweek in their Champions League opener, Chelsea arrive at Old Trafford looking to make an early statement in the title race. A win today will certainly go a long way toward making it a three-team race rather than just a Manchester derby.
Of course, Wayne Rooney and company fear no team at the moment as they've compiled a stunning plus-15 goal differential after just four matches.
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Sir Alex Ferguson's side has five wins in five tries in the Premier League. They soundly defeated Chelsea today to keep that alive. Despite missing a few chances, Rooney scored yet again. Heck, even De Gea looked like the player who has always been reputed to be.
Early on, they withstood some fine play by Chelsea, not panicking in defense or getting nervous when they had the ball. Despite having far fewer chances on goal early, on the Reds scored with their first two shots on frame. Smalling headed home a free kick from Young. Yeah, he looked to have broken a bit early and been offside but it was a wel-struck cross and powerful header.
Then Nani conjured a wonder goal from distance after cutting inside of Matta with ease. Two goals in two chances. Up next, Rooney calmly turned a silver platter service into the net after another United run cut the Chelsea defense to ribbons.
All that's left to lament for United are the chances that Rooney squandered. He slipped on a penalty and fired well wide and then pushed a sitter off the far post as he tried to pass the ball into the net rather than throttle it.
In other words, the worst thing about this match (barring bad injury news about Hernandez) is that Rooney didn't get another hat trick.
|@ richarddeitsch : Sorry Fox NFL Sunday, but promoting the Chelsea-ManUtd game as if it didn't just conclude is disengenous nonsense.|
Coming into Old Trafford is no easy trip, especially this season. The Blues fancy themselves a title contender along with both Manchester clubs but were given a dressing down today. Despite coming out and playing with spirit and aggression in attack they could not translate their early advantage in style to the scoreboard. Yes, they can make claims that at least one of the goals were surrendered came from offside positions. And they will make such claims. But Smalling was horrendously marked on the first goal. And both Nani and jones were allowed to waltz through the defense as they created the subsequent two. Heading into the final 10 minutes, it looked like the silver lining was going to be the reemergence of Fernando Torres. He scored the lone goal and provided a beautiful ball that should have been converted for another. However, a shocking miss on an open goal surely overshadows whatever strides he made. Just minutes after the match, the miss is already being touted as the laugher of the year.
|@ SoccerByIves : FINAL- Manchester United 3, Chelsea 1. Exciting match, some comical finishing, good back and forth action, and an atrocious miss by Torres.|
And, that's a wrap.
Manchester United have won five on the trot to start and look the best side without doubt.
Is playing in center of park but doesn't seem in much of a hurry on the ball.
Rooney onside and on the race from midfield. Bearing down on goal, he passes across to Berbatov but the ball is a bit heavy and Berba is pushed a bit wide. He tries to redirect home but manages only a meek strike. Cole slides back in and clears off line. That's nearly as many point blank misses as actual goals
Chelsea likely the less excited side about that fact.
|@ Fernando_Duarte : At £50m, Torres' Chelsea career is one of the most expensive comedy movies ever made|
That Torres laugher seems to have sucked the wind from the sails of the Blues. Manchester United pushing forward and looking the more likely team to tally another one before the final whistle arrives.
|@ churchofsoccer : If karma really exists, Ashley Cole will choke on peas at dinner tonight. #CFC #MUFC|
Torres miss was so terrible that the FSC announcers have taken pity on him, lamenting how badly he's going to get it for that one.
|@ runofplay : And with the sound of a third-grader going "derp!", the day somehow becomes a net negative for Torres.|
A terrific run and a nice first touch sends him on an empty net. De Gea is defeated. But TORRES SHOOTS WIDE FROM POINT BLANK RANGE. That left-footed disaster of a shot will certainly become Exhibit A in his fall from grace.
Perhaps that dangerous tackle by Cole has reignited the pilot light. Now, Chelsea can't even make the case that at least they're still creating more chances. United on top in score and in play at the moment.
The Berba replaces Hernandez.
|@ OllieHoltMirror : Sorry but that was terrible tackle by Cole. Should have been straight red|
As Hernandez goes for rebound at far post, Ashley Cole comes across with late challenge. Dangerous challenge and Hernandez is hurt. Cole receives a yellow caution. Now, how does this not result in a penalty? It was a yellow at the goal post?
Facing a sitter on a ball from Evra, Rooney tries to direct it into net rather than fire home. He puts it off far post. Described "almost Torres like" by announcer.
Might be the first time he's stopped anyone today. Nani and Young measure a set pick from right flank.
|@ Daniel_LUFC : Chelsea have played way better than United, should still only be 1-1|
A splendid skinning of MUFC defenders forces a save same De Gea and then his shot off the rebound goes high. He looks spirited and dangerous all of a sudden.