Chelsea Fall Flat As Utd Take The Title

Watching the build up to this one all seemed a bit surreal – the closest title race ever in the history of the Premier League and somehow we’d got ourselves involved in it. Maybe it should’ve sunk in by today, after all, it’s all anyone’s talked about since we took 3 points off Utd, but then again it really wasn’t all that long ago that even automatic qualification for the Champions League looked out of reach. Anyway, back to the build up and if the inevitable footage of Mourinho’s departure and Utd’s previous successes weren’t exactly inspiring then the news that Vidic and more importantly Rooney would both start in that game today, was more than enough of an excuse to drown my sorrows.

So kick off then and first thoughts for the day had to be ‘oh my lord, who’s been tangoed?’ as Cech, looking very erm, bright in his new kit – a promotion from steward to supervisor maybe? – did his best to dazzle the opposition. Almost as noticeable as the fluorescent keeper was that bloke who used to turn up and throw his money around, what’s his name again? Anyway, back to the game and we’d barely got into our stride when the customary disaster strikes. As is always the way in these big games, it’s inevitable we’ll lose a key player and that brings us back to the man in orange. Cech, leading with his knee, collides with the oncoming Terry and when he stays down, you know its game over for him. Looked like he’d put his shoulder out to me and the effects of that could be devastating. Certainly that’s the way it appeared in a very lacklustre first half where we failed to put anything of any substance together. News of a rejected penalty appeal  for Wigan was texted to me only minutes before confirmation that Ronaldo was now making his way towards the spot, so Utd going a goal up was a foregone conclusion. I won’t go into any great detail about our own first half – mainly because there wasn’t any. Let’s just say I hoped for better things from the second half.

Of all people, it was Florent Malouda who brought the first bit of excitement in the second half, almost looping over the keeper from distance. Even better though was the news that Terry’s dislocated elbow should be sorted in time for Moscow, so all is not lost – apart from the title obviously. Drogba seemed to be doing everything in his power to frustrate – and not just the opposition. Then just to keep the rollercoaster of emotions in full swing, our constant pressure sees us find the back of the net, courtesy of a typical Shevchenko goal as he quietens his critics yet again. People can say what they like about him, but there aren’t many players who could spend that length of time in the wilderness then come back into games like Utd and this one, and make such a valuable contribution. Only came for the cash? I hardly think so.  Anyway, I digress as Cech throws his orange form to the floor to deny El Hadji Diouf a departing goal for Bolton, then Grant’s introduction of Obi Mikel for Joe Cole (strangely defensive seeing as we needed another 19 goals) sees us put under more pressure as Ashley Cole with another one of his goal line clearances reminds us why we risked our reputation to sign him. Then Utd stamp their name firmly on the trophy with a second goal and it all goes a bit flat at the Bridge as we concede in time added on. C’est la vie! At least our apparently indestructible captain made it back at the end with his elbow firmly back in its rightful place – let’s hope it holds out to lift that trophy in ten days time eh?

Fair play to the lads and credit to them for even having a say in the title this year, nevermind  making Utd work right up until the final whistle of the season for it. But ultimately, this game summed up our season, too many draws at ‘Fortress Bridge’ have cost us and the manager’s tactics remain questionable when it matters.

Well done Utd – we’ll see you in Moscow.

 

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