Today’s big game between Manchester United and Chelsea gripped the attention of the nation who sat down for a thrilling early afternoon kick-off. This was a fight between the top two sides in the league who have been at each others throats all season. Now both teams had the chance to really get one over on their rivals by stealing a win that would push them to the top and surely be enough to keep them there.
This game was also being rolled out in 3D across over 1.000 pubs in England on Europe’s first 3D channel, provided by Sky Sports.
The big news for United was that their top hitman, and the Premiership’s current top goal scorer, Wane Rooney, was out with an ankle injury. Drogba was expected to start for Chelsea but failed to appear, meaning both sides were missing their star strikers.
The odds had been fairly even over on the exchanges but this morning they began to swing in favor of Manchester United and at the kickoff Manchester United were the favorites to win this game at 9/5.
As expected for such a big game things got off to a very nervy start with little mistakes and miss-kicks slipping into the play early on. Chelsea started the better team though and after a decent spell of possession they opened the scoring with just under twenty minutes played. Malouda broke away down the left and drove a tight pass across the box to Joe Cole who neatly flicked the ball into the back of the net.
United managed to creep back into the game and both sides asked a few questions of the referee with Park and Anelka tumbling in the box, but nothing was given and few real chances were created.
At halftime, with Chelsea leading 1-0, both the bookies and the exchanges unsurprisingly pushed in favor of an away win; with a Manchester United win out to 7/1, and the Draw at 14/5.
Three minutes into the second half Chelsea’s full back Ferreira missed a great chance to make it 2-0 when breaking clear and sliding his shot just past the post. Man United looked sloppy but finally found their feet with half an hour to play; with Berbatov creating some havoc in the Chelsea defense.
Chelsea looked to have the last laugh though when substitute Drogba smashed a shot past Van der Sar with ten minutes to play. Drogba was a couple of yards offside and the goal shouldn’t have stood, but the linesman didn’t flag and he gifted Chelsea some comfort; but that didn’t last for long. Manchester United came straight back at Chelsea and Macheda (also a substitute) bundled the ball over the line to make it 2-1. Macheda did knock the ball over using his arm but after watching Drogba score despite being offside the Manchester United fans were probably arguing that justice had been done.
As Old Trafford braced for a thrilling finish a fantastic chance fell the way of Berbatov in the penalty area, but he failed to connect properly with a volley and made it easy for Cech. Chelsea saw this game out and claimed the three points in the end, moving to the top of the table; two points ahead of Manchester United.