Sometimes it’s sad to write about some things in football, especially writing about a referee and his antics day in day out. Why the F.A has to let Howard Webb officiate most games in the EPL with great implication on the title leaves a lot to be desired. Take nothing away from Manchester United, they had the character, the spirit and they fought a good fight. AvB might face a ban for questioning Webb’s antics and Welbeck’s blatant diving to win a penalty, even if to compensate for an earlier one, but that’s football, that’s the EPL, to a certain extent that’s what makes football juicy. Without all that, probably me and you would have nothing to speak about in the office today.
Amidst all the controversy, you got to applaud Chelsea and the great spirit in that team. Leading Manchester United three nil at any point of the game is no mean feat. On the other hand, you are left wondering of what value De Gea is to the team, why he was bought for all that money and why Lindergaard and Amos have to sit on the bench during big games. With Liverpool knocking next, De Gea has to improve really fast, something I don’t see him doing any soon or trust me, Suarez is back and he’ll get one or two past the Spaniard next weekend.
Midfield issues still haunt the Red Devils despite the return of Scholes, Essien is the man for Chelsea and he ruled the midfield like he owned it. He pulled off a save off De Gea at some point in the game and did all the dirty work for the blues at the middle of the pack really well. Fernando Torres doesn’t score anymore but boy; he can create goals and can hold the ball. His partnership with Mata is excellent and should they continue like this, who knows, Champions League football might not miss at the bridge in a while.
Chelsea in the absence of Drogba, Cole and Terry looked like a team in disarray on paper but on the pitch, the boy Sturridge proved to everybody why he needs to get onto the jet to the Euro’s ahead of the likes of Welbeck and Co. His run, trickery and resilience forced an own goal off Johny Evans. The way he dealt with Evra was admirable, except when he made the tackle that brought the first penalty, one Rooney calmly slotted home. Ashley Young doesn’t deserve a place in this team by any standards, the man is just boring to watch compared to his Villa days, injuries and just lack of class could see him relegated to the bench very soon.
Chicharito came on and showed why he’s still top class, heading home the third and sealing one of the greatest comebacks, but from then, Man U had to work hard to get away with a point. First it was Mata’s free kick then came the Cahill shot that rattled De Gea by all standards. He got to thank the heavens for those two moments of sheer class, since both were headed for the back of the net. And at the end of the match, Ferguson left the pitch feeling they might just be on course to a 20thtitle, AvB probably felt hard done by Webb and thought his team deserved the win.
As written in my article yesterday, a draw would be a boring result and true to my words, it was. A win for Man U would have seen them same on points with Man City and a win for Chelsea would spell doom for Arsenal who are chasing fourth place too. The draw now gives Tottenham a chance to close in on Manchester United as they face Liverpool tonight. Until then, you have to admire the Class, spirit and attitude in the Man U dressing room, Chelsea need to learn to concentrate for the 90 plus minutes and Webb needs a lift home from London.