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October 28, 2012
• Stamford Bridge, London
Referee: M. Clattenburg
• Attendance: 41644
David Luiz 4' (own goal)
R. van Persie 12'
J. Hernández 75'
Well, that's it for now folks. Thank you for joining me for what was a hugely thrilling and entertaining match. I'm Tom McKeown and I hope to see you all again soon!
Well. What a breathless encounter that was. A lot of talking points, but Chelsea lose their unbeaten record in the Premier League this season, and United break their winless streak at Stamford Bridge in the league.
FULL TIME at Stamford Bridge and Manchester United have taken all three points with a thrilling 3-2 win. Chelsea will feel aggrieved for the Torres red card and the offside winning goal, but the result stands and United go second in the table, and a point behind the Blues.
90' + 5'
Sturridge wins a free-kick on halfway, and Chelsea have one last chance to launch it in the area, but the visitors easily clear.
90' + 4'
Chelsea can't get near the ball, and United are doing what they need to do to see off the rest of the match. Chicharito forces a throw deep in the Chelsea half and the Red Devils keep it comfortably.
90' + 3'
Valencia has a chance to kill Chelsea off as he drives into the area, but completely scuffs the shot and it rolls a very long way wide of goal. Not the best effort, by any means.
90' + 2'
Yellow Card Antonio Valencia
90' + 1'
Van Persie is back on the field and Chelsea have the ball. Cech wildly mishits a pass and Luiz can't keep it in. Valencia then earns a booking for diving after going down from a Mikel challenge.
There will be five minutes of stoppage time at Stamford Bridge. Can Chelsea grab an unlikely equaliser?
Van Persie is down in the Chelsea half but the Blues play on. Play eventually stops after a Luiz ball goes out for a throw and the striker can receive treatment.
Chance for 4-2! Chicharito nearly seals the win with a left-footed volley from a 45-degree angle, but can't find the target. Sturridge nearly breaks free down the other end after a mix-up at the back for United, but they eventually tidy up and clear.
United lose the ball in midfield and Chelsea try to find a way through. Mikel's cross is cleared and Ramires eventually commits a foul on Chicharito.
Cech hammers the ball into the United half and Sturridge wins the aerial battle with Evans, but has no support and the visitors win possession once more.
United happy to patiently move the ball around; there's a lot of space for them to do so. Chelsea press but can't get near it.
Hazard is the latest to be taken off, with all three of Chelsea's attacking midfielders off the pitch now. Daniel Sturridge comes on as Chelsea hope for an equaliser.
The Blues aren't giving up just yet. Hazard produces an excellent run forward and puts a dangerous ball across goal, but with a two-man deficit there's nobody there to get on the end of it.
Sir Alex's men looking comfortable with the ball but Chelsea are fighting for every ball. They win it back in their own half but United sweep up and stifle the hosts' push forward.
Chelsea do well to clear the ball with United pressing hard. Luiz then drives forward and slides it across to Ramires, who tries a long-range effort which doesn't trouble De Gea.
That was a bitter blow for the hosts after they came back so well. United keeping the ball now and Chelsea will find it very hard to get anything from this match.
Yellow Card John Obi Mikel
Goal Javier Hernández
GOAL!! United back in front! Van Persie is denied superbly by Cech and it comes out to Rafael, who drills towards goal and the Mexican poacher is there to divert towards goal. There's a hint of offside and Chelsea are furious.
United smell blood and are pressing forward. The visitors work it to Van Persie, who fashions himself a bit of space before launching a 20-yard effort high into the stands. Not a pretty one.
Chelsea have to try and hold on for the draw. Di Matteo brings off the superb Mata and throws on Ryan Bertrand as the Blues aim to keep their unbeaten record in tact.
Replays show there may have been contact from Evans. The referee had no doubt but it looks like he may have made the wrong call. Chelsea really up against the wall now.
Yellow/Red Fernando Torres
Another red! And it's the striker who goes after picking up a second yellow. The Spaniard charged past Evans and went down, but the referee sees it as simulation and books Torres for a second time. Chelsea down to nine. Big, big decision, that.
The pace has slowed considerably now. United stroking it around, forcing Chelsea to chase the ball. It could be a long 20 minutes or so for the home fans.
Di Matteo chooses to sacrifice Oscar and bring on Cesar Azpilicueta to fill in at right-back for the Blues. The Brazilian was involved in a lot of Chelsea's play in the first half but was much quieter in the second period.
Chelsea have their work cut out to get something from this game now. Lots of time left for United to take advantage of the extra man.
Rooney bends the resulting free-kick towards the near post, but it doesn't quite dip enough and the ball zips just over the bar.
Red Card Branislav Ivanovic
Oh dear, oh dear. Disaster for Chelsea as Ivanovic trips Young with the winger charging through on goal. Mark Clattenburg sees it as a clear goalscoring opportunity and brandishes the red card without hesitation.
United win a corner and Van Persie swings it in once more. Cech authoritatively comes out to claim the ball, and Chelsea look to move forward once more.
Ramires commits another foul in midfield as Valencia knocks it past. The Brazilian stands his ground and cleans out the United winger. The visitors create a chance for Van Persie, who flicks a header towards goal but doesn't get enough purchase on it and Chelsea clear.
More goals in this one, surely? That 3-3 looks increasingly likely...
United have possession but aren't going anywhere. The visitors deliberately slowing things down after that superb Chelsea spell. Van Persie and Rooney have different ideas as the Dutchman slides a pass through, but the England international checks his run and Cech collects.
Nearly 3-2 to the hosts! Hazard tries to sneak the ball inside the near post with a cheeky effort, but De Gea does well to prod the ball away with his leg. The Belgian has another great chance after a glorious Mata ball into the area, but he can't quite get on the end of it. The Blues have their tails up here.
GOAL!! Chelsea are level! Mata keeps the ball in on the by-line and lifts it across goal. Oscar picks it up at the far post and finds Ramires with an excellent cross, and the midfielder nods low past De Gea. Comeback complete.
United appeal for handball in the box by Luiz after Valencia's cross deflects off the defender's arm, but the officials aren't interested and wave play on.
It's a scrappy start to the half, with both sides giving it away. Mata lofts a pass hoping to find Torres but it skips through to De Gea.
Rafael concedes a free-kick on the wing. Referee Mark Clattenburg warns Luiz and Van Persie after catching the two shoving, and when Hazard crosses the ball in, the official gives the inevitable free-kick the way of the visitors.
The Blues look to push forward early on and force a corner. The ball comes out to Mata on the edge of the box, and the Spaniard drills a first-time effort towards goal but it doesn't go through the mass of bodies and United clear.
Luiz is called into defensive action, clearing behind for a corner after cutting off Valencia's run. Van Persie swings the ball in and Torres manages to clear.
United kick off the second half.
Moments away from kick-off in the second half at Stamford Bridge. If the next 45 are half as entertaining as the first, we're in for a treat.
A little stat action for you: Chelsea have won seven times in the league this season, but only in one of those have they been behind at the break. United, meanwhile, have never lost in the Premier League from a two-goal lead. Can the hosts upset the odds?
I need to get my breath back after that. A truly brilliant half. Chelsea right back in it after being stunned by those two early goals, but the hosts deservedly got a goal with that delightful Mata free-kick. Can Di Matteo's men complete the comeback in the second half?
HALF TIME at Stamford Bridge and Manchester United lead Chelsea 2-1. Phew! What an entertaining 45 minutes!
45' + 2'
Luiz goes on a belting run forward and Chelsea win a throw deep in the right, which the defender takes himself and the hosts win a corner. Mata drives it in but United clear.
45' + 1'
Yellow Card Fernando Torres
Nearly 2-2!! De Gea spoons a kick straight to Oscar and he works it to Torres, who feeds the ball through to Mata, but the goalkeeper stands firm and saves low to keep the visitors in front. What an end to the half!
Goal Juan Mata
GOAL!! And it's an absolute beauty. It's the Spaniard who gets them back into it once more. Chelsea win a free kick on the edge of the D, and Mata curls it sublimely into the far corner. The hosts get the goal they so desperately needed.
Yellow Card Wayne Rooney
WHAT. A. SAVE. That's a worldy from De Gea, right there. Torres gets on the end of Hazard's cross and heads towards the near post, but the goalkeeper somehow tips it around the post. Fantastic stuff.
Ivanovic advances forward and wins a corner off Young. Mata whips it in low and the ball skips through to Torres at the far post, but he can't control it and United clear.
Half time approaching. Chelsea could really do with getting on the scoresheet here.
Chelsea showing urgency and harrying United every time they lose the ball. Ramires is a bit too eager and takes out Rooney in midfield, conceding the foul.
Chelsea have another set-piece on the corner of the area, but Luiz's driven ball is easily cleared and the hosts waste another good chance.
Frustration for the hosts as Mata wastes a free kick in a dangerous area before Chelsea win the ball back. United sitting deep, inviting their opponents on but Di Matteo's side not finding a way through.
Nearly another own goal! Evans sticks his leg out to block a Mikel cross and it slams into the post and behind. Cahill then heads towards goal from the resulting corner but De Gea gets his body in the way and diverts it wide.
Rooney mercilessly boots a clearance into orbit and Chelsea push the visitors back. Torres looks to volley a diagonal ball towards goal but the Spaniard is caught offside.
Chelsea sloppily give the ball away and Ramires cleans out Young, giving the visitors possession once more.
United starting to enjoy more possession, with Rooney dropping deep to collect. Cleverley slides a pass into the path of Van Persie, but the Dutchman is flagged offside.
Chelsea probing around for a gap in the United defence, but nothing is forthcoming. John Obi Mikel resorts to trying an audacious chip towards Torres but it skips away for a goal kick. The visitors burst down the other end and Valencia forces a corner after his initial shot is blocked.
Young and Evra link up superbly on the left flank, and the defender swings a cross in, drawing a fine clearance from Gary Cahill. The visitors looking dangerous when they press forward.
The commentator reveals that United have scored at least twice in each of their last eight league games. An astonishing stat.
Another chance! Hazard picks the ball up outside the area and tries a 20-yard effort which rolls just past De Gea's far post.
Great effort! David Luiz drives the set-piece low towards David De Gea's near post, and the goalkeeper keeps it out with a rather unorthodox save, sticking a leg out to divert the ball away.
Ramires drives forward with a powerful run and Michael Carrick brings down the Brazilian. The midfielder escapes a yellow but Chelsea have a free-kick 30 yards out...
The visitors are holding firm and pressing Chelsea hard, eventually forcing Ivanovic to misplace a pass and United have the throw.
Lucky break for Ivanovic as he tries to knock the ball past Ashley Young and chase it. Tom Cleverley comes across to snuff it out but the ball ricochets back into the Serbian's path. The full-back can't take advantage, however, and blasts a cross straight out the other side of the area for a throw.
United swing in a corner but Chelsea clear comfortably. Rooney completely skews a crossfield ball but it somehow finds Rafael Da Silve on the right.
Good work from Oscar as he wins the ball back in midfield and finds Torres. The striker tries a deft pass to release Mata in the box, but it's far too strong and United have the ball again.
Hazard pushes forward down the right but his low cross is cleared. Ivanovic then tries a long throw but Sir Alex's men clear once more. Chelsea seeing a lot of the ball but it's all in front of the visitors so far.
Torres looks to control an Ivanovic throw but he is quickly closed down. The home side looking bereft of ideas at the moment.
Chelsea are stunned. Two attacks from United, two goals. Can they come back from this?
Assist Antonio Valencia
Goal Robin van Persie
GOAL!! This one is definitely the Dutchman's. The Chelsea defence hoes AWOL as Antonio Valencia finds an unmarked Van Persie in the box, and the striker slots home coolly to bag his sixth goal at Stamford Bridge and put the visitors two in front. A long way back for Chelsea now.
Torres bursts down the right flank and swings a superb cross towards Oscar, who tries to chest down to Hazard on the edge of the box, but it goes horribly wrong and United clear the danger.
A good bit of passing from United sees the visitors move forward. Patrice Evra chases a loose ball and Branislav Ivanovic shows no mercy, clattering into the defender and leaving the Frenchman in a heap.
Rooney is sitting deep in midfield and Chelsea are seeing plenty of the ball. No clear-cut chances for Roberto Di Matteo's side yet, though.
Lovely bit of skill from Oscar, there. Fernando Torres crosses to the Brazilian who deftly controls the ball and swings to shoot, but Jonny Evans is on hand to clear.
Chelsea aren't panicking and are keeping the play slow. Gary Cahill looks for Eden Hazard on the left, but overhits it and it flies into the crowd for a throw.
Own Goal David Luiz
GOAL!! What a start here! Chelsea are a bit unlucky after Van Persie smashes the post from Wayne Rooney's pull back. It cannons off the upright and bounces off David Luiz straight into the net. The visitors are in front.
It doesn't take Robin van Persie long to get involved. He turns David Luiz comfortably and drills a 25-yarder straight into the arms of Petr Cech.
The hosts keeping the ball and moving it around slowly as they settle into the game. Oscar nearly has a sniff at a chance from Juan Mata's through-ball but Rio Ferdinand does well to clear the danger.
Chelsea get us underway at Stamford Bridge.
Wayne Veysey's been spotting some familiar faces: "Alright, Raymundo. What are the odds on Ray Wilkins perching on a seat one row in front of the press box here at the Bridge? Probably quite high, actually. He's wearing his specs today, is Carlo Ancelotti's former No. 2."
The players march out of the tunnel and we're just a few minutes away from kick-off. Excited much? I know I am.
Meanwhile, Robin van Persie has five goals at Stamford Bridge; the most of any visiting player. United have an attacking line-up this afternoon so we could see plenty of goals. A repeat of last season's 3-3 thriller, perhaps?
The hosts are in imperious form in the Premier League form this season, and have won 10 of their last 13 league games at Stamford Bridge, losing just one. They have a fantastic home record against Sir Alex Ferguson's side in the league. Can they keep that going today?
Wayne Veysey is our man in the stands this afternoon. Here's his take on those line-ups: "As expected, Chelsea pick the same starting XI that won so handsomely at Tottenham last weekend. Fernando Torres will be supported by the holy attacking trinity of Oscar, Juan Mata and Eden Hazard, with Mikel and Ramires protecting the John Terry-less back four. Sir Alex Ferguson has plumped for Ashley Young ahead of Danny Welbeck or Nani on the left flank, while Tom Cleverely gets the nod ahead of Paul Scholes, Anderson or Ryan Giggs to partner Michael Carrick in central midfield. Key to the whole encounter could be how close Wayne Rooney plays to spearhead Robin van Persie. Will the Englishman copperbottom the midfield with a deeper role than normal or will he be in the roving No. 10 position that suits him best? Most likely, a combination of the two."
MANCHESTER UNITED: De Gea; Rafael, Ferdinand, Evans, Evra; Carrick, Cleverley; Valencia, Rooney, Young; Van Persie. Subs: Lindegaard, Giggs, Hernandez, Welbeck, Anderson, Nani, Scholes.
CHELSEA: Cech; Ivanovic, Cahill, Luiz, Cole; Ramires, Mikel; Hazard, Oscar, Mata; Torres. Subs: Turnbull, Azpilicueta, Bertrand, Romeu, Marin, Moses, Sturridge
Right, no messing about. Let's get straight to business, shall we? Here are today's teams...
Good afternoon and welcome to our play-by-play coverage of today's mouthwatering clash between Chelsea and Manchester United. I'm Tom McKeown and I'll be here to take you through what promises to be a fascinating - and hopefully goal-filled - Premier League encounter.
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