Wednesday, May 11, 2005

[World Soccer Club] Digest Number 1480

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1. Chelsea bitchslap the scummers
From: Adrian Bagley <>


Message: 1
Date: Wed, 11 May 2005 13:10:08 +0100 (BST)
From: Adrian Bagley <>
Subject: Chelsea bitchslap the scummers

Manchester United 1 Chelsea 3

CHAMPIONS Chelsea pulled off one of the season's classiest comeback wins - to humiliate Manchester United with a stack of new records.

The Blues dictated the last half-hour to reach 94 points - beating United's Premiership record by two - as well as wrecking the unbeaten home term of Alex Ferguson's full-strength side.

Chelsea's recovery was so comprehensive that it mocked the claims of United boss Alex Ferguson and Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger that the three teams are on a par.

United's initial edge in urgency led to Ruud van Nistelrooy's opener, but the Blues soon defied the absence of key men like John Terry and Arjen Robben.

The busy Tiago, for once outshining Frank Lampard and Claude Makelele in midfield, hit a superb 30-yard leveller to underline United's need for a new keeper.

Then, when Chelsea finished much the stronger, Eidur Gudjohnsen clipped a stylish second goal due as much to United's defensive failings as the Blues' elegant probing.

Joe Cole tucked in a late third from an offside position to add an irrelevant touch of injustice.

It all left the Blues celebrating a ninth away win in a row and a staggering 20-point lead over third-placed United, who they have beaten three times out of four this season.

And Chelsea chief Jose Mourinho has still NEVER lost against United.

Fergie had acknowledged the Blues' first title in 50 years by ordering his players to form a pre-match guard of honour.

Gary Neville, in particular, looked far from comfortable with that - while other serial winners like Roy Keane and Paul Scholes must surely have been equally fired up by the rare reversal of circumstances.

Early on, then, Cristiano Ronaldo and main menace Wayne Rooney regularly tested Chelsea's stand-in keeper Carlo Cudicini.

Then van Nistelrooy prodded in Rooney's seventh-minute cross-shot for his first Premiership goal since November.

But United's long-known keeper problems resurfaced within 10 minutes.

Tiago found plenty of space to whip in a right-footer with little backlift that flew in off the top of the right post - Roy Carroll barely moving, perhaps thinking the shot was going wide.

Blues' duo Cole and Tiago promptly became the major influences in midfield.

And United's limited response was flattered by Darren Fletcher thundering a right-footer off the bar 10 minutes past the break.

After that, though, it was Chelsea's rhythm and confidence that improved - peaking with the type of breakaway strike that United at their best used to serve up regularly.

One second Ronaldo was tumbling under Geremi's challenge on the edge of the area.

Then, almost before you could say "United are going to finish third for the second season running," Tiago was sending Gudjohnsen through the middle to wait for Carroll to move and then dink the ball cleverly in over the keeper's diving body.

Cole completed United's misery as Old Trafford began to empty, tucking home once Lampard had exposed gaps in the home defence to cross from the left.

Many of the United fans still present at the end clapped the Blues off.

But scarcely half the ground was full by the time Fergie's men took their supporters' muted applause following an indifferent Premiership season.

Just imagine being a scummer fan and watching your team lose their last home league game of the season to the champions Best thing about the match? The Chelsea fans chanting "Easy! Easy! Easy!"


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